8/26/2015 | 2 MINUTE READ

Thingiversity Summer STEAM Winners Announced

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The competition asked participants to create 3D-printable designs that could be used to help students learn about concepts such as buoyancy, energy transfer and designing from a reference.


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MakerBot Thingiverse, a 3D printing design community, has announced the winners of the Thingiversity Summer STEAM Challenges. Over the course of two months, nearly 900 members of the Thingiverse community submitted designs across the five challenge categories of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math (STEAM). The first-place winners in each category were each awarded a MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D Printer. All of the winning designs are available free on Thingiverse. Winners are as follows:

  • Science: Make It Float challenged participants to create a 3D model of a boat or other object able to float in the water and hold the largest amount of coins. The winning entry was GO-GO AirBoat by David Choi, an electronics designer in Brooklyn, NY. David’s design consists of a 3D printed boat that is rigged with a payload sensor and motor.
  • Technology: Light It Up submissions had to incorporate LED lights for wearing, using, or watching. The winning entry was the Solar Hive by Christoph Queck, a mechanical engineering student from Germany. The Solar Hive is an LED lamp that consists of random, 3D printed boxes in the shape of a honeycomb.
  • Engineering: Catch the Wind required participants to design a 3D model that harnesses the power of the wind such as a pinwheel, a bubble-maker, or a kite, to teach the principles of energy transfer and movable assemblies. The winning entry was Wind Energy Stored in Gravity by Mike Blakemore, the CEO of a software development company in Santa Barbara, CA. Mike developed a printable machine that transferred energy generated from a wind turbine into a “gravity battery.”
  • Art: See the World asked participants to create a 3D model of an outdoor landmark. The winning entry was Vienna Giant Wheel (Riesenrad) by Chris L. from Vienna, Austria. The design is a fully functional model of one of Vienna’s most famous landmarks.
  • Math: Build a Castle challenged participants to make 3D printed sand castle molds to showcase innovative use of geometry, mold design, and tessellations. The winning entry was Math at the Beach by Will Webber, a collection of math-based things that can be used to enhance sand castle designs. The collection includes rollers to add texture to the sand, mathematical shape and bucket molds to create 3D shapes, polygon cookie cutters, and more.

Entries in the Thingiversity Summer STEAM Challenge were judged based on their design’s creativity, printability, educational value, and relevance to the challenge topic. First-place winners received a MakerBot Replicator Desktop 3D Printer.

The Thingiversity Summer STEAM Challenges are part of MakerBot’s broader education initiative, which aims to provide teachers, professors, librarians and students with access to the resources and tools they need to embrace 3D printing. Teachers can use the winning designs of the Thingiversity Summer STEAM Challenges in their classrooms as examples for students, or they can invite students to revisit and reimagine the designs. According to Laura Taalman, senior product manager at MakerBot, the larger goal of the STEAM Challenges was to generate “3D-printable designs that inspire people of all ages to think about STEAM topics both in and out of the classroom, and to add to the library of models on Thingiverse that can serve as resources to teachers and students in their future STEAM projects.”