A team of engineering students and graduates at the University of Central Florida is making a difference in the lives of children — one bionic arm at a time. Using a 3D printer and lots of ingenuity and problem-solving expertise, the students found a way to create an electronic arm complete with a muscle sensor, enabling children without elbows, arms, or hands to use their biceps to make the prosthetic move. Each electronic limb takes 30-50 hours to create and costs around $350 to make, with cost of the limbs being covered through donations. Just as a reference, traditional prosthetics for children can cost up to $40,000 and are often not covered by insurance. So far, the UCF team has made electronic arms for five kids and is currently working with three more, although their services are in much higher demand. Each arm is personalized to reflect the child’s personality and interests, such as an obsession with Transformers or Frozen. One of our favorite parts of this all-around feel good story: through their nonprofit Limbitless Solutions and the 3D volunteer network E-Nable, the students uploaded their design for others to use for free.

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