3D printer makes wrench for astronaut in space

Commander Butch Wilmore shows off a wrench that was made with a 3-D printer in space. (NASA)

A Bay Area-based company had a hand in the first tool that was 3-D-printed in space.

When Commander Butch Wilmore needed a wrench for a fix, NASA didn't let distance stand in the way. Instead, they got creative.

A design for the gadget was created by Mountain View-based Made in Space, and then uplinked to the space station.

Made in Space says the ratchet took four hours to print on its Zero-G Printer, which is the first made to operate in zero gravity.

The whole process took a week. And when Wilmore is done with the wrench, he'll bring it back to earth so researchers can study whether it functions how it should.

For an in-depth look at Made in Space's 3-D printer, click here.

Related Topics:
sciencespaceinternational space stationSpaceXgadgetsrobotsu.s. & worldnasaMountain View
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