Send a Togolese 3D printer made out of ewaste to Mars

Afate is a Togolese hacker who uses the WoeLab makerspace in Lome, Togo (the first makerspace in west Africa). He's invented a 3D printer made out of the ewaste that is piled high in neighborhood-sized ewaste dumps in Agbogbloshie, near Accra, Ghana. He's raised money on Ulule to standardize the printer, called the W.AFATE, so that anyone can turn ewaste into a 3D printer. The W.AFATE design has already won NASA's Space App challenge with a concept for building trashbot 3D printers on distant planets.


Located in Lome, Capital of Togo, WoeLab is the first hackerpace in west Africa. A young Togolese maker at WoeLab wants to bring 3D printing technology to the land, to create a 3D printer "Made in Africa". He calls it W.AFATE, a composition of "W" WoeLab, and "Afate" the name of the inventor.

W.AFATE 3D printer is inspired by the Prusa Mendel. The Woelab-Lomé imported a Prusa Mendel kit from France and assembled it during the AchiCamp 2012. Afate identified a few issues in the assembly process and initiated this new project aiming to build a 3D printer which is easy to reproduce, using recycled materials.

The suburb of Agbogbloshie in Ghana's capital, Accra, has in recent years become a dumping ground for computers and electronic waste from Europe and the US. Hundreds of tons of e-waste end up there every month where they are broken apart, mostly by children, to salvage the copper, hard drives and other components that can be sold on.

W.Afate: a 3D printer made from recycled e-waste wants to go to Mars [3Ders.org]

(Thanks, Gmoke!)

Discuss

Continue the discussion at bbs.boingboing.net

5 replies