The student engineering team from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign won the cab design contest for the 3-D printed excavator to be put on display at IFPE and CONEXPO-CON/AGG in Las Vegas next March.
The team was one of many from across the country to submit a futuristic cab and human machine interface design. Design submissions were judged by industry experts. Members of the winning team will receive a $2,000 cash prize from the NFPA and have the opportunity to see their design printed at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). The contest was sponsored by the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, NFPA, ORNL, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP).
The finished excavator will be the first to use 3-D printed steel and is part of the 2017 show theme, “Imagine What’s Next.” Attendees will also be able to see 3-D printing in action at the show.
The NSF awarded the CCEFP a grant to 3-D print a full scale operational excavator to display at the shows and the ORNL Manufacturing Demonstration Facility will print the machine. Teams from Georgia Tech and the University of Minnesota are working on the excavator design for 3-D manufacturing.