Mar 13, 2015
3DPrintingNews

Robert Downey Jr & Limbitless Solutions team up to deliver a real-life ‘Iron Man’ bionic arm

Iron Man Arm

‘Iron Man’ actor Robert Downey Jr. has teamed up with Limbitless Solutions to deliver an amazing new 3D-printed bionic arm to Alex Pring, a seven year old boy who was born with a partially developed right arm.

In the video below you can watch as Alex is taken to a hotel room in Atlanta where he is greeted by none other than Tony Stark (Downey Jr.), with a very special gift for him. Downey then presents Alex with a new 3D-printed bionic arm modelled after the armour in the Iron Man movies.

The two sit down together to compare tech, with Downey staying in character and discussing all the design troubles he has with his Iron Man armour, quipping that “yours might be better than mine” as the two share a robo-fist bump.

The arm was developed by Limbitless Solutions, a volunteer group which work to build and donate low cost 3D-printed bionic limbs for children. Ordinarily prosthetic limbs like this cost upwards of $40,000 and are not covered by most health insurance policies, as due to the speed at which children grow the arm frequently needs replaced with a larger model. Using 3D-printers has cut the cost to around $300 an arm, a massive cost reduction which finally makes these much needed prosthetics readily available.

Exciting as it is to have a Hollywood superstar show up, what is even more exciting is the potential that this technology has to revolutionise the way prosthetic limbs are made.  Making the process faster, more efficient and extremely cost effective will change the lives of thousands of people all around the world.

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