The Creative Design Lab and Robomania Lab at the National Science Centre are initiatives of the Innovation Department of NIHERST and together they form our Fab Lab facilities. They aim to provide the local, regional and international population with affordable access to digital fabrication equipment and resources for education, creativity, innovation, and professional development. Originally designed for communities as prototyping platforms for local entrepreneurship, Fab Labs are also being utilized by schools as platforms for project-based, hands-on STEM education. Users learn by designing and creating objects of personal interest or importance. Empowered by the experience of making something themselves, users both learn and mentor each other, gaining deep knowledge about the machines, the materials, the design process, and the engineering that goes into invention and innovation.
NIHERST’s Fab Lab is the first of its kind registered in Trinidad and Tobago, and in the region, by the Fab Foundation which emerged from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Center for Bits & Atoms Fab Lab Program. Our lab focuses on design, hands-on projects, robotics, product development and prototyping. We are committed to providing a relaxed environment for tinkering and sharing of ideas, by students, teachers, designers, engineers, inventors, artisans, hobbyists, entrepreneurs and makers of all things.
Visitors to the National Science Centre can receive information sessions at our lab. We offer a variety of workshops, camps and other outreach activities for various age groups. The lab is also available for your own personal projects. Bookings are available for workshops, consultations and time on machines.
Our Fab Lab is outfitted with:
- 3D Printers
- Laser Cutters
- Vinyl Cutter/ Plotter
- 3D Pens
- CAD/CAM Software, CorelDRAW and other specialty software
- Electronic components for circuit prototyping or development
Client Products and Testimonials
Our Fab Lab has been producing artisanal jewelry, among other products and we are proud to allow more artisans to brand their lines as locally made.
Sundara Artisan Jewelry
My name is Natasha Gill and I am the owner and creator or Sundara Artisan Jewelry. I specialize in handmade artisanal jewelry and I pride myself in branding my line as locally made. I was introduced to the Fab Lab when I was invited to participate in a workshop last year. I had never heard of the FabLab prior to this event. I attended the workshop, which aside from being thoroughly enjoyable was very informative, and through this the seed for my next collection was planted. I had been seeking to outsource the manufacturing of more of my work in an effort to increase my production. I had conceived a line of earrings that I had intended to produce in metal, but I was unable to find a local manufacturer. When I saw what the laser at the FabLab could do, I switched gears and decided instead to produce my new line in leather. I worked closely with Christopher during the initial production process to smooth out the details. He worked diligently with me as we found a way to consistently get the results I was seeking. After that it was as simple as dropping off my raw materials and collecting the finished pieces. I was able to produce my entire new line along with the accompanying wooden displays at the lab. The results were fantastic!
- Natasha Gill, Founder & Director, Sundara Artisan Jewelry
- Everything Slight Pepper
NIHERST’s offering has always piqued my interest. As a design entrepreneur, informal educator and advocate for learning outside of the classroom, it has been on my list to visit for quite some time. The Fab Lab workshop series provided the perfect opportunity for me to get a sample of the Centre’s offering. I was really impressed by the technical knowledge of the trainers, the range of equipment, as well as the additional support and subsidized rates that they offer to creators. I believe that access to these types of options for prototyping and to test run ideas before diving into the high cost of development, is imperative on the mission to foster a culture of innovation.
- Jeunanne Alkins, Founder & Design Director, Everything Slight Pepper
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- Everything Slight Pepper