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A Guide to the Third Dimension

ICTP scientists publish free downloadable book on low-cost 3D printing
Low-cost 3D Printing for Science, Education and Sustainable DevelopmentLow-cost 3D Printing for Science, Education and Sustainable Development

29/04/2013 - Trieste

ICTP announces the release of a free, downloadable  book on a new technology that has the potential to revolutionize science,  education and sustainable development: three-dimensional (3D) printing.  The book, titled "Low-cost 3D Printing for Science, Education and Sustainable Development", offers a practical guide to this rapidly evolving technology,  giving an overview of current research on the topic and its uses in science  education. It was compiled and edited by ICTP's Science Dissemination Unit  (SDU) and can be downloaded free of cost from the website.

The affordable and easy-to-use technology is good news for developing  countries, where 3D printing could open up exciting opportunities for  research, education and humanitarian projects. As an institute dedicated  to promoting sustainable science in the developing world, ICTP is prepared  to advance the adoption of this technology in these regions. The book's  editors -Enrique Canessa, Carlo Fonda and Marco Zennaro- want readers to  understand and explore the huge potential that 3D technology provides. 

The book is divided into four main sections: 

  • a detailed view on the technology with information on how to create a 3D   printed object, the related open source hardware and software, the kits   available in the market today, and a glimpse at future projects;
  • applications of 3D printing in scientific fields ranging from mathematics,   physics to archaeology, space science, and medicine;
  • innovative ways for the technology to be used in education;
  • a glimpse of the immense potential the low-cost 3D technology can have on   sustainable development including plastic recycling. 

ICTP opened its own 3D printing facility on 27 February 2013, when it  inaugurated its 3D Printing Lab. The Lab will take center stage at an  international workshop organized by the book's editors -with the  participation of book's authors and attendees from developing countries,  to take place in Trieste from 6 to 8 May 2013 and aimed to create awareness  about 3D printing and its applications to science, education and development. 

Media contact: ICTP Science Dissemination Unit: