Vote for Olaf and the CDAM Lab team!

Three nominations in the 2021 3D Printing Industry Awards confirm global recognition for research by Professor Olaf Diegel and the CDAM Lab team – and you can help them win.

CDAM Lab team members (from left to right): Dr Juan Schutte, Innovative Manufacturing and Materials Programme Co-ordinator Claire Barnsley, Professor Olaf Diegel and Simon Chan

Use this link to go online and cast your votes before 20 October – and in doing so, you will be  supporting the team’s extraordinary research into revolutionary and cost-effective solutions for health and medical needs in New Zealand. (See below for voting details).

“This is a first for us and a real honour,” says Olaf, who is based in the Faculty of Engineering’s Department of Mechanical Engineering.

“These nominations reinforce the global impact of the work we are doing and how New Zealand punches above its weight with innovations in 3D printing.”

Some of the medical solutions developed by the team are already in use. These include prosthetics for people who have lost limbs, from the custom-made arm for a pre-schooler which can be re-printed overnight as she grows, to a leg prosthetic printed with tattoos for a man so it matches his other leg.

This work, in close collaboration with Peke Waihanga, New Zealand Artificial Limbs Services, is recognised in the category for academic research team or project.

The team is also working on using 3D printing (also known as additive manufacturing) to create food items which can be tailored to suit people with specific nutritional needs, such as the elderly or high-performance athletes.

“We can actually print a meal,” explains Olaf. “By using natural products such as pea protein, and printing on nutrients and flavours as the glue, we can create edible layers that build up into recognisable food items custom-made for an individual.”

This research is recognised in the category for medical, dental or healthcare applications.

An important part of Olaf’s work is educating people about 3D printing and he uses social media to get his message across to individuals and businesses across the world.

“Companies have got to learn to use 3D printing for the right reasons,” he says. “It needs to add value to a product to make it worthwhile – for example, does it make the product lighter or more comfortable or more cost-effective?”

Olaf’s work in this area is recognised with his nomination in the category for community advocate of the year.

To cast your vote:

  • open the link
  • scroll down to the indented section 1 that asks for your email address
  • enter your address
  • click on the “OK” box
  • Use the small up and down arrows in the teal-coloured boxes to scroll to the following categories and vote for Olaf and his team:

Category 2: Community advocate of the year
Olaf Diegel, Professor of Additive Manufacturing, Creative Design and Additive Manufacturing Lab, University of Auckland (Olaf is at F on the list)

Category 13: Academic Research Team or Project
Creative Design and Additive Manufacturing Lab, University of Auckland (CDAM Lab is at D on the list)

Category 14: Medical Dental or Healthcare Application
Binder jet-based food printing, Creative Design and Additive Manufacturing Lab, University of Auckland (CDAM Lab is at A on the list).

Media queries

Alison Sims | Media adviser
09 923 4953
Mob 021 249 0089