College Student in Florida Builds “Bionic” Arm with a 3D Printer


An aerospace engineering student gearing for a Ph.D. at the University of Central Florida named Albert Manero has engineered a “bionic” arm for six year old Alex Pring. Little Alex was born without an arm and was in need of a prosthesis to help him to keep up with other kids his age. Prosthetic arms are pretty expensive and can cost upwards of $40,000 each.  They are not usually covered by insurance plans either, so the expense is totally out of pocket for the patient.

Upon hearing about this Manero and his team of friends decided to intervene and make little Alex a “bionic” arm using a 3D printer and only $350 worth of common parts. This cool team of college students also shared their plans online for free for others that are in need of similar objects.

Manero and his team were put into contact with the family of Alex Pring by the online network e-Nable. e-Nable is a group of people that use 3D printers as a hobby and “just want to make a difference”. They have designed other prosthetics for other children at no cost as well. We’d have to say that these students definitely made a difference in this young boys life for sure.

Sources:
"ABOUT US," enablingthefuture.org, http://enablingthefuture.org/about/
"Fulfilling a 6-Year-Old's Dream: UCF Students Design and Build Him an Arm," today.ucf.edu, July 25, 2014, Zenaida Gonzalez Kotala, http://today.ucf.edu/fulfilling-6-year-olds-dream-ucf-students-design-build-arm/
"UCF students make prosthetic arm for 6-year-old boy," sun-sentinel.com, July 28, 2014, Marni Jameson, http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2014-07-28/health/fl-boy-gets-arm-20140728_1_prosthetic-arm-new-arm-ucf-students

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