January 18, 2013
Can 3D Printing Boost Gun Safety?
3D-printed gun parts have alarmed U.S. lawmakers who worry about 3D printing making gun control almost impossible. But a Cincinnati startup wants to help change 3D printing's perceived role by making the technology part of the solution for gun safety. LiveScience reports.
The 3DLT startup is looking to fund an "Innovation Challenge" that rewards designers for making 3D-printed versions of gun safety technologies.
Some existing technology examples include a magnetic lock that only unlocks for gun owners wearing a special magnetic ring, and a "safety bullet" that prevents kids from accidentally firing the weapon and still allows gun owners to eject the bullet and have live bullets ready to fire within seconds.
The gun safety project represents an answer of sorts to Defense Distributed's controversial "Wiki Weapon" projectthat aims to build the world's first gun made entirely from plastic 3D-printed parts.
In their own words:
Please note we are not promoting the use of 3D printing to produce guns or gun enhancements.
The concept of 3D printed firearms is getting lots of press coverage and exposure right now. The eventual availability of 3D printed guns creates an ever greater need for improved gun safety. While some see 3D printing as a problem, we think it can also be part of the solution. All entries in our challenge will be vetted and only those with potential to improve safety will be accepted.
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