Oct.10, 2013

33-year old Kodjo Afate Gnikou has imagination, talent and ambition.

Using rails and belts from old scanners, the case of a discarded desktop computer and even bits of a diskette drive, Gnikou has created what is believed to be the first 3D printer made from e-waste.

Afate has been working on this experimental device for several months. He calls it W.AFATE, a composition of "W" WoeLab, and "Afate".

Afate launched his project on ulule, an European crowdfunding site earlier this year, and raised more than 4,000 euro from supporters. The fund helped Afate support the cost of the original investment in time and equipment. W.AFATE 3D printer is now a working prototype. Some elements had to be bought new but, in all, his printer cost him 100 US dollars to build.

Afate says his printer can be useful on a daily basis as it can print various utensils needed in any household, that are not always easy to get hold of in west Africa.

But he believes this model is only the prototype for something much larger. His aim is to one day transport e-waste to Mars to create homes for mankind.

"My dream is to give young people hope and to show that Africa, too, has its place on the global market when it comes to technology. We are able to create things. Why is Africa always lagging behind when it comes to technology?", he asks.

Though some have called him a dreamer, his hard work has paid off as the young inventor has been rewarded with the NASA International Space Apps Challenge in Paris.


Posted in 3D Printers



Maybe you also like:


not impressed wrote at 12/21/2014 1:30:14 AM:

Inventor? Aren't most homemade 3d printers made from scrap? This is obviously not the first. When thousands of white kids do it it's not news. Let one full grown spook do it and its news. It's so fascinating. Like a monkey smoking a cigar. Send him to mars.

asef wrote at 10/10/2014 9:01:08 PM:

we can product ndfabric for houses and mills and life of persones

Edem wrote at 10/17/2013 3:15:02 AM:

#3D #Wafate can never cost 100$ if Arduino only cost more than 100$ how can you sell a product at a price of one of the materials that have contributed to it! Besides, it is not yet finalized in order to be budgeted. the price is not fixed yet and also there are still repairs for good functionality

Boris Djemaah wrote at 10/17/2013 1:55:22 AM:

Why worry so much about the cost while forgetting the genius creative side of this beautiful digital revolution that is the #wafate #3D printer? And speaking a little about the cost for those interested , how can you sell a product at a price of one of the materials that have contributed to it! Besides, it is not yet finalized in order to be budgeted .. So please calm! Everybody will be informed about the price at the right time! Thanks

AKE Amazan wrote at 10/16/2013 1:42:15 PM:

le prix autour de la Wafate est une speculation, elle ne peut pas couter 100$ puisque la carte qui pilote cette imprimante coute plus de 100$ merci de rectifier

Andre wrote at 10/14/2013 9:28:34 PM:

Interesting, maybe we can help him out by making up parcels of useful salvaged components and sending them in crates. EU rules prohibit shipping e-waste to developing countries but I'm sure that sending just the useful parts is permitted. There are also useful stepper drivers in many old optical drives and the controllers in some printers can also be recycled.

alvaro wrote at 10/13/2013 6:39:57 PM:

The creativity of human being is the same for all referentials frames.

Zumba wrote at 10/13/2013 1:25:27 PM:

Cost $100 to make and raised $4,000? = tidy profit...

Anja wrote at 10/11/2013 2:45:06 PM:

@Fred: He is from Lome, Capital of Togo.

Fred wrote at 10/11/2013 2:42:35 PM:

Where is he from. There is no Country Afrika

Leave a comment:

Your Name:


Subscribe us to

3ders.org Feeds 3ders.org twitter 3ders.org facebook   

About 3Ders.org

3Ders.org provides the latest news about 3D printing technology and 3D printers. We are now seven years old and have around 1.5 million unique visitors per month.

News Archive