Deanne Bell, TV host and Washington University Engineering alumna, has founded and launched a national program to encourage the next generation of engineers to learn more about engineering through product design challenges.
The program, called Future Engineers, is designed for U.S. students in Kindergarten through 12th grade. This fall, the students are challenged to design and create a digital 3-D model of a tool that they think astronauts need in space. The winning design will become part of space history as one of the first things to be printed on a 3-D printer in space.
The initiative was born from NASA’s launch of the first-ever Zero-G 3-D printer, built by Made in Space, to the International Space Station aboard SpaceX-4. To celebrate the launch, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Foundation and NASA have teamed up to develop 3-D space challenges to solve real-world space exploration problems. The Future Engineers 3-D Space Challenges are a White House Maker Education Initiative and a STEM Education Program.
The program’s sponsors include the ASME Foundation and SpaceX, in collaboration with Made In Space and with technical assistance from NASA.