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15 Ways 3D Printing Is Saving The World

From feeding hungry astronauts to mending broken bones, 3D printing is changing the world in a big way. Get your mind blown below, then get a 3D-printed version of yourself with the Datalandify Yourself app.

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2. Helping adorable animals get back on their feet.

Via Facebook: Buttercup-Gets-a-New-High-Tech-Foot

Buttercup the duck was born with a backward left foot. Thanks to a 3D-printed design by Mike Garey, Buttercup can now walk comfortably again. Read more here. (Warning it's one of the cutest things you'll ever see.)

5. Powering our smallest devices.

Via Flickr: portland_mike

Leave it to Harvard. Researchers there have figured out how to 3D print lithium-ion batteries that are “the size of a grain of sand.” This means more energy for lots of devices, from the newest smartphone to the smallest hearing aid.

6. Making medicine more accessible.

Via Flickr: epsos

Honey, can you pick up some more printing molecules at the store? Chemist Lee Cronin is working on a 3D printer that, instead of objects, is able to print molecules for developing medicine.

8. Printing vital organs.

Via Flickr: jurvetson

Wait lists are notoriously long for organ transplants. Wouldn't it be a lot easier if you could just print a new one? Surgeon Anthony Atala is working on a project with a 3D printer that “uses living cells to output a transplantable kidney.” Mind = blown. Kidney = saved.

13. Saving the environment.

Via kickstarter.com

Some of the printers are helping to save the day just by the nature of how they work. The Filabot for example, "grinds and melts old plastic items to make 3-D printing self-sufficient." So, if you need more "ink" for your 3D printer, you can just look in your recycle bin.

3D printing is also letting you shrink yourself.

Via ge.com

Ok, not actually shrink yourself, but at least a 3D printed miniature version of you. Upload a photo of yourself to the Datalandify Yourself app, and GE will print it out and send it to you for free.

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