Jun 5, 2019

University of Glasgow Students 3D Print 800-Parts Steam Engine Model to Honor James Watt

To celebrate the legacy of Scottish inventor James Watt, students from the University of Glasgow, Scotland, used 3D printing to create an 800-part model of his steam engine which was first built 200 years ago.

James Watt was a Scottish inventor and mechanical engineer credited with pioneering the Industrial Revolution. To celebrate the 200 year anniversary of his death, students from the University of Glasgow are undertaking a number of events to honor him.

One such project involved 3D printing a meter-long model of a Boulton-Watt steam engine first designed by Watt. The project was undertaken by the JetX student society which spent five months working on the model.

“The past five months have been very busy but we’re really pleased with the final model. The whole building process utilized a lot of design and prototyping practices we’ve learned throughout the years of developing jet engine models. The University of Glasgow is rightly proud of its association with James Watt, and his legacy helps make it an inspiring place to study,” said Chris Triantafyllou, the JetX president who took the lead in designing and constructing the model engine.

JetX student society with the 3D printed steam engine model. (Source: County Press)

3D Printing the Boulton-Watt Steam Engine

To create the steam engine, the team printed over 800 parts which took a whopping 845 hours of printing time. The resulting steam engine model will be on display at the University Library from June 6th.

It is part of a larger public exhibition which explores Watt’s life. A number of other projects make up the year-long series honoring the inventor who spent time working as an instrument maker at the university when he “kick-started” the industrial revolution.

Professor Colin McInnes, the university’s James Watt Chair and professor of engineering science, said: “The JetX team have achieved something remarkable with the construction of this model, which is a fitting tribute to the vision of James Watt in this bicentenary year. The engine is stunning, and credit to JetX for their imagination, dedication and diligence, not just in this project but also in their self-directed jet engine designs.”

If you’re interested in learning more about Watt, the 13th annual Glasgow Science Festival begins today and is themed in honor of the Scot. Alternatively, read more about Watt’s life on the university website.

Source: County Press

James Watt, the Scottish inventor died 200 years ago Source: (County Press)

License: The text of "University of Glasgow Students 3D Print 800-Parts Steam Engine Model to Honor James Watt" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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