3D Printing Chemical Structures

Design, edit and 3D print chemical structures - available to subscribers of The PrintLab Classroom

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Lesson Overview

In this 3 lesson project, students will learn how to design, edit and 3D print chemical structures using free software. The project involves an introduction to atoms and molecules before students split up into teams. Each team will be allocated a different molecule to research before 3D modelling and 3D printing the chemical structure. By 3D printing and having a tangible object, students can better visualise and understand the molecular world. In the final lesson of the project, each group will present their 3D printed model along with their research.

Subject Areas

The lesson can be incorporated into the study of science and can be adapted for ages 8-16. The curriculum is aligned to NGSS, CCSS and UK National Curriculum standards. A comprehensive list of standards met is included in the lesson platform.

In this project students will:

  • understand basic principles of chemical structure

  • analyse a variety of molecules and their structure

  • research a specific chemical molecule and present their findings

        • use chemical drawing techniques to draw molecules

        • use CAD software to create chemical models

        • manufacture 3D chemistry models through 3D printing

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