This one was shared by Mr. S.D., and it's worth mentioning, since we've been talking from time to time on this site about the benefits of 3D printing, or "additive manufacturing" as it is sometimes called, to space exploration:

Nasa just 'emailed' a wrench to space for the first time

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Joseph P. Farrell

Joseph P. Farrell has a doctorate in patristics from the University of Oxford, and pursues research in physics, alternative history and science, and "strange stuff". His book The Giza DeathStar, for which the Giza Community is named, was published in the spring of 2002, and was his first venture into "alternative history and science".


  1. Enlil's a Dog on December 27, 2014 at 8:00 pm

    And perhaps they may have just ‘beamed’ it up – literally! 🙂

  2. kitona on December 27, 2014 at 6:54 pm

    I’m not totally sold on all this 3D printing stuff. Ok, so they were missing a wrench on the space station but you still need to have the raw material available on the space station to make the wrench plus you need to pack the 3D printing machine itself. In an environment of presumably limited resources (like a space station) why not just pack the wrench to begin with?

    But yeah, ok, let’s say we’re not on a space station but maybe a resource rich asteroid with all the raw material available that you could possibly want. Fine, but it still seems silly to me that the people back at NASA hq would have a better idea of the necessary wrench design than the astronauts themselves so what’s the point of “emailing” it? Whole thing just seems like a bit of theatre to me.

    • Enlil's a Dog on December 27, 2014 at 8:17 pm

      When you speak of ‘raw material’ are you assuming that the final product must be of a metal composition like a normal ratchet? If you take a look at the photo in the original article run by the Washington Post, the object the Astronaut is holding appears to be plastic.

      I’m certainly no expert on space station design by any means but I’m pretty sure if they looked hard enough they could probably find enough non-essential plastic bits and bobs on board to make up a small ratchet.


  3. marcos toledo on December 27, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    Though this story comes via a New Zealand website from the Washington Post. This will be the way to go on deep space and under water missions in the future. As well as missions to remote areas here on Earth.

  4. DanaThomas on December 27, 2014 at 7:15 am

    This positively gushing “Post” article naturally neglects to remind readers of the essential role played by Russia in the space station.
    And, by implication, the fact that additive manufacturing is no monopoly of the US oligarchs.

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