Final details: 3D printing

One little requirement for the launching of the satellite is to actually have a satellite to launch. Luckily, we have had time to address that little issue. The satellite’s body has been made with 3D printing. But waht in the beginning seemed an easy task has turned out to be much more difficult than we expected. Before moving on, it is my turn to express the many thanks of the team to Jaime Pérez, a student of third year of middle school. He has put at our disposal the use of his 3D printer, and has been attending team meetings as one of it. He is actually a team member and will arrive to the CanSat 2017 international competition at Bremen, Germany.

To print in 3D, the printer needs, first of all a file to print. The design of the Can was originally made in AutoCAD, although later on it has to be exported to .STL for the printer to be able to recognise it. We first used the high school’s 3D printer, and the results turned out to be a bit disappointing. The cavities enabled for the entrance of all the componentes had been obstructed by portions of fillaments. When printing the body vertically, the printer had to print these parts on the air. Anyhow, we made use of this misfortune.

We corrected the mistakes we could appreciate on the first desgin and re-did it, to print it later on with Jaime’s printer, being the result the body we have made our tests with. The material used for the operation is called PLA, and as it has proved troughtout the tests, it is sufficiently strong and capable of withstanding hits. Although with some later polishing the body has been able to host all the components, it wasn’t perfect when it finished printing. Due to this, we have decided to print one more model, and just in case anything goes wrong with the one we have now, we have a replacemente. From today to the day of the launch.

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