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  1. #1

    3D Printed Bracket Supports ATLAS Instrument in NASA ICESat-2 Mission

    NASA is employing 3D printing yet once again, and this time will be using it to support a new instrument on the Ice, Cloud and Land Elevation Satellite-2, known as ICESat-2. The impending mission for 2018 will send the satellite over Greenland and the Antarctic to measure sheets of ice in terms of elevation, thickness, and vegetation. ATLAS is the photon-counting laser altimeter which will make collecting all this data possible, and is thought of by NASA engineer’s as a ‘technical marvel.’ Rather than the one beam used in the first satellite mission, with ATLAS, they can split the beam into multiple streams and pairs, allowing for higher resolution, faster compilation of data, and better precision all around. Read more at

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Baltimore, MD
    Great article Bridget! I am surprised there haven't been more 3d printed parts used on spacecraft/satellites. Is this really on the 2nd instance?
    ". . . allowing for this central bracket component to be only the second 3D printed part to go into space so far."

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