How 3D Printing Could Help Prevent And Fight Drinking Water Shortages

If there’s one thing Western societies take for granted, it’s access to a safe supply of drinking water and having decent wastewater. However, currently 2.2 billion have no access to exactly that. And the forecasts are bad: it is possible that by 2032 more than half of the world’s population will suffer from a lack of drinking water. Creative and innovative solutions need to be created to address the problem. How can 3D printing help?

Funding Scientists Who Develop Water Purification Processes


Partnerships with global institutions could help by promoting water purification developments that are accessible to all. The Green Chemistry for Life (GCFL) program funds scientists developing water purification processes. Promising, talented people from the field, who are engaged in basic research that is consistent with the twelve principles of green chemistry, will be funded through this program worldwide. One of the scientists funded in the program is Natalia Quici, who is part of the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research of the Argentine Atomic Energy Commission. She is designing low-cost gas nuclear reactors made with 3D printers. Through conversion, these reactors are capable of reducing CO2 emissions into useful chemical substances. One of Quici’s goals is to integrate these reactors into water treatment plants that emit CO2 as a byproduct. This would make water treatment technology more environmentally friendly by reducing emissions. The researcher’s project has the potential to be a solution to drinking water shortages, which are also caused by climate change.


3D Printing: A Promising Technique to Fight The Challenges of Climate Change?


This is not the first time that 3D printing has been linked to a project that aims to combat climate change. Even several years ago, experts from the American Center for Climate and Security (CCS), among others, believed that humanity could combat the consequences of global climate change with the spread of the technology. This not only applies to the process of printing gas nuclear reactors as explained above, but is also due to the fact that raw materials can be used more efficiently with the help of 3D printing. This is because additive manufacturing of a product makes it possible to use exactly as much material as is actually necessary. This is a stark contrast to conventional methods of producing objects.


Do you know of another project where 3D printing is helping to stop climate change? We would love to get your input on this very important topic. Feel free to leave a comment and we will get back to you! 

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