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3D Printing

The library's 3D printer provides an opportunity for current AU faculty, staff, and students to further their learning experience as the technology grows. In order to best serve the American University community, the library has established a 3D printing policy that all users must adhere to.

The 3D printer may be used only for lawful purposes. No one will be permitted to use the library's 3D printer to create material that is:

  • Prohibited by local, state or federal law.
  • Unsafe, harmful, dangerous or poses an immediate threat to the well-being of others. (Such use may violate the terms of use of the manufacturer.)
  • Obscene or otherwise inappropriate for the Library environment.
  • In violation of another's intellectual property rights. For example, the printer will not be used to reproduce material subject to copyright, patent or trademark protection.

Submitting a File for 3D Printing

All files must be submitted online using our 3D printing request form. Prints can take anywhere from a few hours to multiple days, and a printing queue may form. Please plan ahead. Once a submitted file is approved, we ask for at least 14 days to print your object.

Only one job request may be submitted at a time. Your object must be picked up and paid for before you can submit another print job. If you submit multiple job requests, they will be deleted from our queue.

Please be aware that our printers are hobbyist machines. If you need you object to be exact, please consider using a commercial printing company.

Print requests will be reviewed to ensure that they comply with our 3D printing policy and are suitable for production. Within seven days of submission, staff will email patrons regarding their print requests. If your print is approved, it will then be added to our print queue.

3D printing is a new resource and an emerging technology, and prints may fail for a variety of reasons. Our staff will work to make your print successful, but we cannot guarantee your file will print. Failed prints happen for a variety of reasons and we reserve the right to stop a print job if, in our judgment, the print is not going to be successful.

If there is a problem with the design or we cannot print your object, you will be contacted and asked to schedule a 3D printing consultation. All consultations are held in person and scheduled in thirty minute blocks.

Pricing and Picking Up Your Object

All 3D prints are charged a base printing fee of $4 plus $0.05 per gram of material, which includes any raft or support structures. Upon completion of a print, the printed objects will be weighed and your library account will be billed. We accept EagleBucks only. Money can be added to your AUID on the EagleBucks Portal. American University Print/Copy funds are not accepted. Prints are delivered as is. You are responsible for removing rafts and supports from object. Objects must be paid for at time of pick up. You will be notified when your object is ready for pick up. Any objects not picked up within 14 days of notification will become property of the AU Library.

Contact Us

(202) 885-3229
Bender Library, Lower Level