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Made in Togo: A 3D Printer Built from Recycled E-Waste

Categories: Sub-Saharan Africa, Togo, Citizen Media, Development, Economics & Business, Good News, Ideas, Science, Technology

Afaté GNIKOU [1] is an IT engineer in Togo who wanted to tackle two important goals:

  1. create the first 3D printer from Togo, 
  2. reduce the alarming number of E-waste [2] dumped into his country. 

Here is a presentation of the 3D printer project, called W.AFATE :

The W.Afate 3D Printer made in Togo via ulule.com [3]

The W.Afate 3D Printer made in Togo via ulule.com

A. Gnikou is a member of the Woe lab, a maker collaborative space based in Lomé, capital city of Togo. Sénamé Koffi Agbodjinou, founder of Woe Lab, explains Afate's thought process for the project [4] [fr]:

L’imprimante W.AFATE est inspirée de la Prusa Mendel [..] Afate ayant cerné le problème que posait la disponibilité d’un kit dans la concrétisation de ce projet, a initié la démarche de fabrication d’une machine autonomisante, facile à reproduire, 100% à base de recyclage et autres matériaux disponibles.

The W.AFATE printer is inspired by the Prusa Mendel [..] Afate identified a clear problem : the absence of a basic toolkit to achieve his project so he opted to create a machine that is 100% based on recycled materials and easy to replicate.

E-Waste is growing issue in Togo and the nearby countries. The following infography illustrates the increased proportion of E-Waste in the region [5] :

E waste in africa -infography by Woe Lab with their permission [3]

E waste in africa – Infography by Woe Lab with their permission