Members of the additive manufacturing community are rallying together to provide 3D printers and medical and protective equipment to aid the defense of Ukraine.
3D printing software developer 3YOURMIND is working with Polish 3D printing service provider Sygnis and start-up backer TeenCrunch to support the ‘Tech Against Tanks’ initiative in response to the ongoing Russian military invasion in the country.
The project is aiding the production and distribution of 3D printed medical, tactical, and protective equipment from 3D printing hubs and makers across Poland, Germany, and Ukraine, with Sygnis having already provided more than a dozen machines and 3D printing materials on the ground in the Ukrainian city of Lviv.
Tech Against Tanks
The initiative began when members of TeenCrunch began receiving messages from NGOs in Ukraine and other institutions reporting missing equipment. 3YOURMIND, Sygnis and TeenCrunch came together to form ‘Tech Against Tanks’, a database platform to facilitate the production and distribution of 3D printed supplies to the country.
The goal of the project is to produce high-end parts in Poland and then distribute them to various locations in Ukraine.
Leveraging experience gained during the Covid-19 pandemic, 3YOURMIND rapidly set up a platform to distribute the 3D printing of parts across Poland, Germany, and Ukraine to professional production centers. The firm is responsible for building a digital inventory and distributing parts throughout the maker community and various additive manufacturing hubs.
Sygnis, meanwhile, is tasked with qualifying 3D printed parts, sourcing production equipment, and preparing production instructions in Polish, Ukraine, and English. Selected logistics companies are then responsible for transporting the 3D printed supplies to Ukraine in coordination with the Polish military.
According to the partners, 3D printers on the ground in Ukraine are ready to produce parts on the battlefield for military, police, and civilian use. Those who have 3D file parts that could be useful in aiding Ukraine’s military and humanitarian efforts are encouraged to submit their files to 3YOURMIND’s Stand With Ukraine platform.
Sygnis will then qualify, approve, and publish the parts in order to make them available to the international maker community or to specialized production hubs. The Stand With Ukraine platform can be accessed here.
Delivering 3D printers to Lviv
As part of its role in the ‘Tech Against Tanks’ initiative, Sygnis has been supporting Ukraine’s 3D printing community by providing machines and various 3D printing materials to members of the country’s additive manufacturing community, which are carrying out a range of projects for the Ukraine military.
In particular, Lviv-based 3D Tech ADDtive asked the firm for assistance, prompting Sygnis to send a bus filled with 20 3D printers and over 380kg of 3D printing materials to the firm free of charge. After arriving safely in Lviv, the 3D printers and filaments were immediately distributed to local makers.
The donation has bolstered 3D Tech ADDtive’s available machine base, which is being used to 3D print items such as CAT tourniquets, street periscopes, and other proprietary designs for the Ukrainian military.
Sygnis itself is also working to fulfill projects in demand across Poland’s eastern border, and after consulting with the Territorial Defense Forces, doctors and specialists in humanitarian aid, its machine park is producing designs that will be supplied to Ukraine to aid in the country’s efforts. To this end, the firm has created an online repository of 3D models that are available to download for free for makers to get involved in the project.
Sygnis’ initiative is part of the larger ‘Tech Against Tanks’ campaign, and the firm has launched an open call for designers, 3D printers, and anyone else with ideas of how to help the Ukrainian defense effort.
The 3D printing community rallies around Ukraine
Since Russian forces began their full-scale invasion of Ukraine on 24th February 2022, the Western world has increasingly ramped up pressure on Russia with sanctions designed to cripple its economy, while at the same time supporting Ukraine with military equipment.
Many of the world’s leading 3D printing companies have followed suit by refusing to deal with Russian firms. The likes of EOS, 3D Systems, and HP have ruled out sales to Russian businesses, while Zortrax has broken off share negotiations with a Russian buyer. Many firms, including us here at 3D Printing Industry, have also come together to show support for the security and foreign policy course of the German Federal Government, European Union, and NATO regarding the measures imposed on Russia so far.
Open-source medical device developer Glia, meanwhile, has issued an appeal to get its wound-binding tourniquets, initially used in Palestine, into Ukraine to help with the country’s humanitarian crisis. The bandage’s design files have been made free for medics on the ground to download via GitHub, and the firm has also launched a fundraiser with the goal of securing $25,000 to manufacture and ship its tourniquets to those in need.
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Featured image shows Sygnis has so far delivered 20 3D printers and 380kg materials to 3D Tech ADDtive in Lviv. Photo via Sygnis.