NASA's astronauts are installing the first integrated 3D printer and the plastic recycling system on the International Space Station (ISS), a device called the Refabricator, developed by Tethers Unlimited to enable astronauts not only to print 3D in space but also to recycle and reuse materials Plastics.
Refabricator Was developed by Tethers Unlimited, a privately held aerospace company located near Seattle, Washington, in close collaboration with NASA's space production program at the Marshall Space Flight Center, which reached its peak last November, bringing the plastic recycling machine According to reports, the device has arrived safely and is now installed on the ISS.
The device combines a plastic recycling system and a 3D printer in a mini-refrigerator machine, giving astronauts the ability to turn plastic waste into a three-dimensional printing thread that they can use to fabricate new parts, including medical devices, dishes, and other objects That would be necessary. The device marks an important step towards sustainability in space, where resources are minimal (because of the high costs of launching a space charge).
Although the refactor has been tested extensively at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, the hybrid machine will undergo additional tests and tests on the ISS, which will begin in the coming weeks after the machine is fully tested.
On top of the ISS, Tethers Unlimited's Refabricator is expected to offer several benefits, including reduced task costs (because of the ability to repurpose plastic waste), minimize logistics and handling handling challenges and improve task flexibility.
"The Refabricator is the key to demonstrating a sustainable model for the fractionation, recycling and reuse of parts and waste materials in space exploration missions," said Nikki Wurkizer, Space Production Manager at Marshal, NASA's Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama.
The reflector joins Made in spaceThe add – on device on the ISS.