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Students Win National Design Competition for Future Missions to Mars

Los Angeles — (Business Wire) — The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Foundation is on a mission to propel the future of advanced manufacturing research, while NASA is developing mission critical 3-D printing technologies needed for humans to explore destinations far beyond Earth, including Mars. Together, they invited K-12 students to engineer the future of 3-D printing in space by issuing their fifth student innovation challenge, this time with a focus on medicine and Mars.

Future Engineers, the online host for the innovation challenge series, is proud to announce the two winners of the Mars Medical Challenge: Lewis Greenstein, 18, of Seattle, Wash. and Lauren Lee, 12, of Cupertino, Calif. Students were tasked to create a digital model of a medical or dental object that could be 3-D printed by an astronaut to maintain physical health on a three-year, round trip mission to the Red Planet. Uses could include: diagnostic, preventative, first aid, emergency, surgical and/or dental purposes. This challenge placed K-12 classrooms squarely in the middle of problem solving for this important scientific mission.

Out of 745 submitted designs from 34 states, a panel of experts selected one national winner from each age division. The winner from the Teen Group (ages 13-19) is the Dual IV/Syringe Pump designed by Greenstein and the winner of the Junior Group (ages 5-12) is the Drug Delivery Device designed by Lee. In recognition of their accomplishments, each winner and one parent will be flown to Houston, Texas for a tour of NASA’s Johnson Space Center to learn more about space medicine, human space exploration and Mars. In addition to this grand prize, a MakerBot 3-D printer will be donated to the education organization of their choice, engaging thousands more students with 3-D printing technology as a result of their achievements.

“It is inspiring to see these two students use 3-D printing to innovate something truly unique in space travel,” said Deanne Bell, CEO and founder, Future Engineers.“This ongoing collaboration between the ASME Foundation and NASA catapults our youth into another realm of science and engineering expertise. I am happy that our platform continues to challenge students to dream big and think off-planet.”

Lee’s Drug Delivery Device is a fully-3-D printable spring loaded syringe, while Greenstein leveraged his experience volunteering in medical clinics to invent his Dual IV/Syringe Pump, a system which uses a blood pressure cuff as the driving force to administer intravenous fluids in microgravity.

For Greenstein, this was his first time using 3-D design software. He learned the skill through an Innovations Prototype class he took at his school - Seattle Academy. “I am very honored, especially because it was my first time using CAD software,” he said.

Both students started with sketches to refine their idea and create their designs.

“I was inspired by many different things, such as oral syringes and ballpoint pens,” said Lee. “I started designing by sketching out my thoughts and ideas on paper. Then, I started learning new software programs.”

To learn more about the Future Engineers 3-D Space Challenges, information on how to enter or the judging criteria, visit www.FutureEngineers.org.

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