Consumption is an integral part of mankind existence. Therefore, it might not be wrong to think about how we want feed our hunger for material things in the long-term. Today 5% of the earth`s 7 billion people consume about 25% of all available resources. With an average western standard of living, the earth provides enough resources for only about 1.4 billion people; all 7 billion would need at least 3 earth. In short, we need to gain more value from less resources. In the long term we need to change our behavior and learn to deal responsibly with our resources. Perhaps classical paths to raise awareness are not enough adequate for this challenge and it requires new forms of teaching and learning.

The CubeFactory serves two purposes: It is a learning-conducive instrument (Learnstrument) with an experience-based approach for the mediation of a closed loop material cycle but also a self-sustaining mini-factory for the production of 3D printed objects. To operate, the CubeFactory requires only sunlight and thermoplastic waste. This paper provides a concept to teach and equip people for sustainable value creation using locally-available materials while taking into account minimal prior knowledge, skills and qualifications. An improved understanding regarding basic sustainable manufacturing competencies and recycling capabilities shall enhance the awareness regarding sustainability-related aspects of value creation, with particular focus on the efficiency and effectiveness of resources.

– Under a Creative Commons license –

Bernd Muschard, Günther Seliger

Bernd Muschard, Günther Seliger