An Extrudingly Good Idea

Fourth-year UBC engineering physics students Dennon Oosterman, Alex Kay and David Joyce developed the ProtoCycler, a desktop machine that chows down on discarded soda-pop bottles, plastic scraps, leftover Lego and similar castoffs. Grind, melt and extrude the plastic as a clean, continuous filament suitable for 3-D printers – and do the world some good too.

“We were concerned about the amount of plastic waste generated in our engineering projects,” said Oosterman, “so we looked for a way to recycle that plastic back into usable filament.”

There are desktop filament extruders and plastic grinders on the market but the ProtoCycler team says their machine not only combines the two processes, it’s easier to use and the fastest on the market: 10 feet or about three meters of filament per minute.

ProtoCycler’s cost per kilogram of filament: $5 when made from commercially produced pellets. Utterly free when made from discarded plastic. To buy the equivalent weight of 3-D quality filament from a supplier: $30.

With the laudable concern and ‘green’ philosophy, comes a real-world competitive edge and potential profits.

Read more about

Research Excellence

Related Content

UBC students launch desktop recycler that turns pop bottles into 3D printer plastic

Campus

Vancouver
ProtoCycler the desktop recycler. Photo Credit: ProtoCycler

Twitter

Let @alumniubc help you travel with the Break Escape Sweepstakes! Enter to win two @WestJet tickets to anywhere jus… https://t.co/bTItgp00pe
about 15 hours ago.
Environment engineering student Elsa Langill learned how to be resourceful, focused and involved during her Coordin… https://t.co/LefoZhNF6Y
1 day ago.
Congratulations Jenny and Navjashan & good luck at Nationals! https://t.co/W434cRzzZ7
1 day ago.
Applications for the McEwen Family Teacher Recognition Award are now open! https://t.co/zSnEaYgBHd https://t.co/u4t4SH5YFd
1 day ago.
RT @ubcappscience: BC Government Invests in More @UBC Biomedical and Manufacturing Engineers https://t.co/VDnLdo3poi @ubcengineering @UBCme…
1 day ago.
RT @GreenCollegeUBC: Tonight! Join Green College Leading Scholars @sarakstevens @UBCSALA and Steven Weijs @ubcengineering @ubcappscience f…
1 day ago.
LAST DAY TO APPLY! Discover your passion at #UBC #Engineering. From earthquake research to AI and robots, there's s… https://t.co/vX8deuxOst
2 days ago.
RT @GeeringUp: Exciting job opportunity from Actua! 🤩 https://t.co/NmjNMb6F4b
2 days ago.
RT @GeeringUp: Looking to inspire the next generation of leaders this summer? Apply to be an instructor at Geering Up in our Van, Surrey, a…
5 days ago.
Teachers are the unsung heroes of our communities. Nominate a teacher who inspired you for the McEwen Family Teache… https://t.co/oxhusKPGSe
5 days ago.