White House Science Fair

Easton LaChapelle with his robotic arm.

Lending a hand for a fraction of the cost

President Obama welcomed more than 100 students from over 40 states, representing 45 different competitions and organizations for the third White House Science Fair.

Approximately 30 student teams had the honor of showcasing their science projects during the annual event before senior Administration officials and leading science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) communicators, advocates, and educators.

A sampling of the exhibits that Mr. Obama will see, and one that caught our eye at PNO, comes from 17-year-old Easton LaChapelle and his robotic arm.

After years of tinkering with robotic arms made of Legos and controlled by Nintendo gloves,
Easton LaChapelle, 17 of Mancos, Colorado was inspired to take his efforts to the next level when he met a girl with an $80,000 prosthetic arm at a science and engineering festival.

With that encounter, he decided that he could find a cheaper way to build a more functional limb at a fraction of the cost. Generating most of the parts through a 3D printer, Easton was able to assemble a fully operational arm at a price of only $250. He is now working on controlling the hand through a headset to further improve its utility for people with limited limb mobility.

Visit the White House online to see more from this year’s fair.

See Easton's Robotic Arm in Action



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