Jacques Cousteau’s grandson Fabien Cousteau believes that synthetic, 3D-printed coral might be the thing to save our endangered reefs. According to CNET, “In nature, coral reefs are made up of calcium carbonate skeletons where tiny organisms called polyps take root” and these polyps grow their own reefs too—but only at one centimeter per year. That isn’t fast enough to keep up. Cousteau’s belief (or hope) is that 3D-printed calcium carbonate skeletons will encourage growth just like the real deal. The Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center has already started experimenting with the clever coral.
3D-Printed Coral Could Save Our Endangered Reefs