U.S. army deploying mobile FabLabs

Technology has always been a major influence on war

It has taken many forms from building automated weapons to transportation and distribution of supplies. This has further influenced how soldiers are trained, as the technicians behind the inventions rarely entered the battlefield. Thinking further ahead, as previously reported, battles of war might experience a change of nature if soldiers had access to technology that could make fast repairs and fixes, on the spot, using new technologies such as 3D printing.

The latest evolution in this field is the Expeditionary Lab Mobile (ELM), which allows fast problem solving from conception to implementation. The ELM is a 20-foot container, which is equipped with 3D printers, computer-assisted milling machines, laser, plasma, and water cutters, and some common tools such as saws and welding gear. The materials that can be used to construct parts consist of plastic, steel and aluminum. The ELM is designed to be operated by two specially trained engineers. It has a generator, heating and cooling systems, but also satellite communications.

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Source: 3D Printing Industry

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