April 22, 2014

You know, if you take a not-often-used squirt bottle of either ketchup or mustard, on the first squeeze you often get a dribble of water or messy separated liquid. That's annoying. Thankfully Tyler Richards and Jonathan Thompson (18), two high school seniors from Liberty, Mo. has come up with a solution to watery Ketchup: a new cap created using CAD software and a 3D printer.

As students in the Project Lead the Way program at North Liberty High School, Richards and Thompson have spent a lot of time thinking about ketchup.

Project Lead the Way is a national education project that aims to take a hands-on and project-based approach to STEM education and bring students closer to technology. Richards and Thompson spent a week sketching up their ideas in notebooks, then used what they learned in the program to design it with CAD software before sending the file to a 3D printer. They used the Stratasys Mojo desktop 3D printer from the school to print out the final model. The mushroom-shaped 3D printed cap forced the ketchup away from the cap and into a little basin at its center. Then the water sits there and the ketchup comes out.

Local news station Fox4 in Kansas City reports that their teacher initially didn't approve their idea, but Richards and Thompson collected surveys and research to back up their theory and finally convinced him. Tyler and Jonathan are looking into getting a provisional patent for their invention. They're hoping it goes from a school project to something profitable or business venture, according to Fox4.

Their market research has indicated that this 3D printed mushroom cap could be made for 22.6 cents, and that consumers might be willing to buy it for $3. Check out a video interview below:

Posted in 3D Printing Applications

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Mark Bolinger wrote at 11/11/2015 4:10:56 PM:

^ Good Point

Mark Bolinger wrote at 11/11/2015 4:09:47 PM:

^ Good Point

Mason Cobbler wrote at 11/9/2015 4:34:49 PM:

^ Good Point

James wrote at 4/23/2014 3:15:30 PM:

Print "shake well before use" on cap - $0.0001

Joe Wallace wrote at 4/23/2014 2:04:57 AM:

Don't need power windows, just use the crank Don't need a microwave, just use the stove or oven Ketchup came in a glass bottle with a screw cap. Now you can get it in a squeeze bottle with a flip cap. The students saw a problem, did the research to validate it, used the design cycle to develop a solution, then did market research to determine a price point and financial viability.

Wes wrote at 4/22/2014 11:12:53 PM:

I think it was good exercise to fix a common issue when you don't shake the bottle first. But, now how to get the last couple of ketchup out ;-)

Charlie Accetta wrote at 4/22/2014 9:11:38 PM:

I know a cheaper solution. Shake the bottle before squeezing. The Bureau of Trademarks and Patents already has a pile of solutions to nonexistent problems to sift through.

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