At STEM Minds, we are always encouraging our students to find new ways to share their ideas! 

3D design is an amazing way to do this. 3D design refers to the process of using software to form a mathematical representation of a three-dimensional object. This technique is used in so many industries in order to communicate, analyze, and share ideas! 

We are very excited to be in the midst of hosting our 3D Design Summer Contest. We are challenging students to design the future they want to see, in connection with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The contest deadline is on August 13th, so head on over and register to show us your Future City




In the meantime, to get you excited about 3D design, we’ll be highlighting some of its amazing applications. Be sure to let us know which of these you find most interesting, and if there’s any neat uses you know of that we haven’t mentioned here!  



1. Architecture 

3D design has revolutionized the world of architecture. Gone are the days of blueprints and complicated 2D drawings. Today, architects can pour their vision into a single 3D model that can provide a detailed, realistic representation of a building or other project. The ability to model such ideas using 3D design is amazing for visualization – it allows architects and others involved in the project to determine what aspects work and which don’t, and changes can easily be made. Beyond that, this improved visualization means that architect


2. Health Care 


Yes, you read that right! 3D design is also helping advance health care and medicine in a variety of ways. One of the many amazing uses of 3D design in this industry is 3D-printed prosthetics. The use of 3D printing allows people who have lost a limb to access high-quality prostheses, at a fraction of the retail price. In fact, there is a global network called e-NABLE, comprised of passionate designers, engineers, physicians, 3D-print enthusiasts, and amputees who volunteer to create, re-design and share 3D-printable prosthetics. This is an inspiring example of how we can come together to use our “making” skills for good! 

At STEM Minds, we recently gained some insights into the transformative power of 3D printing in health care ourselves. At the beginning of the pandemic, hospitals and clinics across Canada were facing a devastating personal protective equipment (PPE) shortage. In March of 2020, we converted our facilities into a production site for the Ontario PPE Collective, a collective of makers in the GTA that rallied together to 3D-print and donate PPE to health care workers in our community. You can read more about this project here. 


Image Source: https://www.yorkregion.com/news-story/9960722-aurora-newmarket-businesses-3d-printing-ppe-for-ontario-health-care-workers/?fbclid=IwAR18m8eSv2ATtzfsQ6jBMR5Iby6iOYGIqednAV7G34FNZ7vI8DbHX-RzuUc


3. Video Game Design & Filmmaking  

The evolution of video game graphics over the years is largely thanks to the introduction of 3D modelling. The use of 3D design means that video game artists and developers can bring forth the grandest ideas – whether their stories and concepts lie within the realm of fantasy, in the real-world, or somewhere in between, 3D modelling can bring them to life! 3D design is a particularly useful tool for creating incredibly detailed landscapes and characters, which go a long way in enriching your gaming experience.  

The limits of filmmaking have also been pushed significantly by the use of 3D modelling. Now, filmmakers are able to bring their stories to life just as they imagine them, without having to sacrifice any detail or spark of adventure.  


4. Climate Research  

Image Source: https://www.csc.fi/en/web/atcsc/articles/-/asset_publisher/Wv4jnclVrl2F/content/pilvilaskenta-avuksi-saamallien-kehitykseen

The use of 3D modelling has also made its way into the world of scientific research. One particularly interesting area where it is being used is climate research. Climatologists use 3D design software to model different weather zones and climate simulations. This can provide insights into how extreme weather events such as tsunamis and tornados may unfold in and impact different areas. It can also help form regional climate trend predictions, with very high spatial resolution (i.e. predict trends that are specific to very small regions). Some scientists have also used 3D models to provide insights about space, like this team that used a 3D model to predict what the early climate of Mars may have been like! 


It is truly amazing that one technique can have such broad applications. Learning the skill of 3D design means that one day, you can explore a career not only in the industries we’ve mentioned here, but also in several others such as engineering, industrial design, manufacturing, marketing, and many more! Most importantly, learning the skill of 3D design will allow you to share your ideas with the world and help make it a better place. It’s time to get designing! 



[1] “3D Modeling Uses: 9 Industries that Can’t do Without it” cad crowd [Online]. Available: https://www.cadcrowd.com/blog/3d-modeling-uses-9-industries-that-cannot-do-without-it/. [Accessed 30 July 2021].
[2] “5 Innovative Use Cases for 3D Printing in Medicine” formlabs [Online]. Available: “3D Modeling Uses: 9 Industries that Can’t do Without it” cad crowd [Online]. Available: https://formlabs.com/blog/3d-printing-in-medicine-healthcare/ [Accessed 30 July 2021].
[3] “3D-Printable Prosthetic Devices” e-NABLE. [Online]. Available: https://3dprint.nih.gov/collections/prosthetics. [Accessed 30 July 2021].
[4] “3D modelling of the early martian climate under a denser CO2 atmosphere: Temperatures and CO2 ice clouds”  F.Forget, R.Wordsworth, E.Millour, J.-B.Madeleine, L.Kerber, J.Leconte, E.Marcq, R.M.Haberle. Icarus Vol. 222, 1. [Online]. Available: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0019103512004265 [Accessed 30 July 2021].