A 3-D Printer Saved This Poor Underfed Tortoise

Illustration for article titled A 3-D Printer Saved This Poor Underfed Tortoise

3-D printing is going to put humans out of work and make shopping obsolete, if you believe the evangelists. But before it does all of that, it has poor sickly animals to save, like Cleopatra the tortoise.

Backstory: Cleopatra had a poor diet, and as a result, a shell that was misshapen, full of valleys and ridges. This meant that when she played with her tortoise friends, her shell became worn, and eventually, holes appeared, making her vulnerable to infection.

The solution was to 3-D print her a protective shell out of fetching red plastic, which sits on top of her crappy non-3-D-printed normal shell, and protects her at playtime. She's expected to heal within the next few years, and will eventually grow out of her shell and be like all the rest of the tortoises.

Advertisement

Although the story's only really interesting for the aww points (tortoise with a 3-D printed shell!) it proves that 3-D printing does have a place in the medical world, for custom-sized one-off devices. Although humans don't have shells (thanks, evolution), we do have ears and bones and blood vessels, all of which need replacing on occasion. [Telegraph]

Image credit: RJ Sangosti/Getty Images

Share This Story

Get our `newsletter`

DISCUSSION

capt_weasle
capt_weasle

On a slightly unrelated note, I kept pronouncing "underfed" in my head as "un-durft" instead of "under-fed" and I was so confused about what that could possibly mean. And then my brain started working again and I felt so ashamed.