Student Uses 3d Printing to Create the World’s First Underwater Jetpack


to build an affordable alternative to expensive underwater jetskis, british student archie o’brien has developed ‘cuda’, a 3D-printed jetpack. the propulsion device, which has been developed from a university project into a mass production, is worn as a backpack giving the user a hands-free experience as they glide through the water.

after researching on the subject, o’brien has developed his own propulsion system, which would let him fit the jet into a backpack configuration. once the design was ready and all necessary prototypes were created, the designer built his first-ever 3D-printed underwater propulsion backpack with the help of local manufacturer 3D hubs.

‘the impressive part of the project is that most of the components used FDM [fused deposition modeling] technology and PLA [polylactic acid],’ explains 3D hubs team. ‘both FDM and PLA are the most commonly and easily accessible materials and technologies respectively due to their low cost.’

to make cuda run underwater safely, o’brien uses some extra materials: all the 3D-printed elements are covered with epoxy resin, while silicone parts are added to protect the batteries from the water. the creators claim that, after testing the jet by leaving it in water for months and close to freezing conditions, it doesn’t show any issues with leakage or deterioration.

video by 3D hubs