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Engineering students partner with 3D printing company to produce micro turbines

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Published in The Windsor Star | Aug. 5, 2015
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Two University of Windsor engineering students have been blown away by the big success of their tiny wind turbines. Countless hours put into designing and improving different prototypes have led to a final design that will be used to bring power to small communities in Central America.

RMRD Tech business partners Kyle Bassett and Lucas Semple, both 28, recently joined forces with the California-based business MatterHackers. The 3D printing company produces several of the parts used to construct the clean-energy turbines that stand two-feet tall and can be assembled in minutes.

“We are always looking for ways to use 3D printing for the greater good,” MatterHackers director of business development Mara Hitner said in a press release. “These visionaries are going to answer what was previously just a hypothetical question: What would be possible if you introduced 3D printing to developing nations?”

It all started when Bassett travelled to Nicaragua after completing his master’s degree. He lived in a small fishing village without electricity for about two years, during which time he began developing the portable turbines.

“Back then, I was hoping the idea could maybe one day progress to this stage,” he said. “We have already had sales all over the world.”