This project developed by The Leigh Group at Manchester University uses 3D printing to develop and manufacture advanced research apparatus at a fraction of the cost of purchasing commercially available scientific apparatus. PhotoRedox Boxes are very popular apparatus in modern chemistry laboratories investigating photochemistry. They provide reliable and consistent access to unique chemistry involving reactive substrates.

Researchers in The Leigh Group designed and rapidly printed a modular PhotoRedox Box for 1% of the price that maintains a controllable temperature and can accommodate reactions on a large-scale (better than the commercial product). The apparatus facilitates a project in the group to investigate the exciting world of molecular machines and molecular nanotopology.

photochemistry, photobox


  • An enclosed box improves the safety of the working environment as the strong intensity of light is contained.
  • Cost 1% of the price as sold online.
  • Can run on larger scales than the commercial version.
  • Parts can be easily replaced.
  • Easily modified and upgraded to suit the operator’s requirements.
  • Can create more apparatus, quickly as demand increases.
CREATE Education would like to thank Dean Thomas and The Leigh Group who have kindly shared the 3D model files for this project, so that other Chemistry departments can 3D print their own versions of the PhotoRedox Box.
photochemistry, photobox

In The Classroom

Universities, Schools and Colleges can use 3D printing as a low cost way to produce their own apparatus, manipulatives and physical tactile classroom resources.

Other ideas for resources and links to resource download files can be found here.