Central York Junior designs tool for astronauts living on International Space Station

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SPRINGETTSBURY TOWNSHIP, YORK COUNTY, Pa. -- A Central York High School junior is competing for the chance to leave his mark on the International Space Station.

It’s called the “Two for the Crew Challenge” hosted by Future Engineers.

Students from all over the United States designed tools they thought could be helpful to astronauts living in space.

There’s only one student from Pennsylvania left in the competition.

Patrick O’Neill has high hopes.

"It’s just incredible to have made it this far and the thought of having the chance to make it further… is just incredible," said O'Neill. He's a junior at Central York High School in York County.

He has quite the knack for 3D printing.

“There definitely was a learning phase in there, but once I got a hold of it, it’s pretty plug and play right now," he explained.

As a freshman, he created a club for students to print 3D hands for kids in under-served countries, founding the school's chapter of E-NABLE.

“He took Drafting and CAD his first semester as a freshman and doubled up and took Engineering Design his second semester. Typically, that second course is one that usually upperclassmen take… not too often do I have a freshman in there," said Sean Blasetti, a teacher of technology and engineering.

For the "Two for the Crew Challenge", Patrick needed to design a multi-functional tool astronauts could use on the International Space Station.

"From there, I said, well, pliers are a great two handled tool cause they’re aren’t many two handled tools. I just basically went down the list and said, 'oh these pliers would be great, and what goes with pliers? Wrenches,'" said O'Neill.

Three months and 19 prototypes later, O'Neill created the 'Crescent Moon'.

Although he’d love to win, Patrick simply hopes to become a finalist.

“One of the prizes is a 3D printer," he said. “It’s really a win win for me."

Patrick's goal is to make sure there is a 3D printer at the school for the club to continue on making the prosthetic hands even after he graduates.

Four finalists will be chosen from each age group and announced February 19th.

The competition winners will be announced in March.

To donate to Patrick's club, click here.

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