Denton Plastics has a longstanding commitment to innovations in sustainability and plastic recycling technologies. We’re also excited about the next generation of innovators, opportunities to partner with schools and students who show a passion for plastics recycling.
That’s why we were pleased to connect with two remarkable sophomores, Aaron and Joshua, at Portland’s Oregon Episcopal School. As part of their honors chemistry class, the students had devised a class science project aimed at helping save money and reduce resources by reusing waste from the school’s 3D printer.
Filament raw material for 3D printers is expensive, and the students had a goal of recycling the printer’s waste material back into filament that could be reused by the printer. Not only were Aaron and Joshua thinking outside of the box, they shared Denton Plastics’ passion for helping the larger community. If successful, their efforts could ultimately help other schools save money on 3D printing, while promoting sustainability.
As part of their project, Aaron and Joshua built a small extruder – no small accomplishment by itself. However, they needed processed material in order to test their machine. Through their research, they found Denton Plastics, reached out and immediately made a strong impression. They were very inquisitive, determined and clearly dedicated to solving this challenge and learning as much as possible along the way.
After meeting with the students and hearing about their project, we recognized an opportunity to help them by providing ABS reprocessed plastic pellets from our facility so Joshua and Aaron could test the functionality of the extruder with recycled material. We also met with them in person for a Q&A session in which we shared expertise and technical information to help advance their project.
We could not be more impressed with Aaron and Josh’s vision for creating a solution that can make the 3D printing process more sustainable. With ideas like this and their determination to get the job done, clearly these two students have a bright future.
In the next 8-10 years, Aaron plans to build and refine a captured recycling system to help schools manage 3D printing waste. Joshua plans to pursue an engineering career, focused on design and R&D. These two students represent exactly the kind of hometown entrepreneurship that Denton Plastics appreciates. Kudos to these young innovators!