NASA set to take AMF 3D printer to space
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NASA set to take AMF 3D printer to space



NASA set to take AMF 3D printer to space
NASA is preparing to send its first commercial manufacturing facility to the International Space Station (ISS).
The 3D printing company Made in Space has partnered with NASA to send their Additive Manufacturing Facility (AMF) to the space station on a launch scheduled to take place next Tuesday.
Users on Earth can pay to use AMF, a 3D printer specially designed to operate in a microgravity environment, to print products on the space station.
Once it arrives, Made in Space will be able to command AMF remotely from their headquarters in the NASA Ames Research Park.
Spencer Pitman, head of product strategy at Made in Space, told TechCrunch that the company has already secured 20 paying customers for AMF.
Their customers include high schools that are hosting space-related design challenges, universities that will print medical research components, and companies that will print commercial parts for satellites and other spacecraft.
“We will even be printing a 3D printable exercise device for Autodesk and wrenches for Lowe’s,” Pitman said.
AMF has been a few years in the making. Made in Space first demonstrated the capability to 3D print objects in a weightless environment in 2011 using parabolic flights. The company also sent an earlier version of their 3D printer to the ISS back in 2014. Known as the 3D Printing in Microgravity Experiment, their first printer conducted a series of tests with over a dozen different 3D printing materials
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