Paper No. 65-4
Presentation Time: 10:45 AM
3D PRINTING LARGE DISPLAYS OF EARTHQUAKE FAULTS: CHALLENGES, OPPORTUNITIES AND REWARDS (Invited Presentation)
3D printing can be a valuable tool for preparation of physical displays dedicated to Outreach and Education programs in geosciences. I report on the Challenges, Opportunities and finally Rewards related to 3D printing, particularly generation of large displays that are useful to visualize earthquake related topics. I will use two examples of large 3D printed displays, over 5 feet long, of the California and New Zealand Fault systems. Multiple challenges arise when trying to generate large displays using non-industrial 3D printers that often require developing new solutions and customization of the printing process. Challenges include design of the actual model, partitioning the model to fit the printing bed, planning and scheduling the actual 3D printing operations and finally integrating the parts into a comprehensive display that is portable and easy to use in different settings. The opportunities created by using such displays span a variety of events in both Outreach and Education. Despite the difficulties faced when trying to 3D print complex geologic structures, using such displays provides a rewarding experience to both the presenter and diverse audiences. Most importantly, 3D printed models have the potential to address common misconceptions among non-geoscientists about earthquakes and plate tectonic concepts.