3D printing of CNT- and graphene-based conductive polymer nanocomposites by fused deposition modeling

Article

Gnanasekaran, K., Heijmans, T., van Bennekom, S., Woldhuis, H., Wijnia, S., de With, G. & Friedrich, H. (2017). 3D printing of CNT- and graphene-based conductive polymer nanocomposites by fused deposition modeling. Applied Materials Today, 9, 21-28. In Scopus Cited 30 times.

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Abstract

 

Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is limited by the availability of application specific functional materials. Here we illustrate printing of non-conventional polymer nanocomposites (CNT- and graphene-based polybutylene terephthalate (PBT)) on a commercially available desktop 3D printer leading toward printing of electrically conductive structures. The printability, electrical conductivity and mechanical stability of the polymer nanocomposites before and after 3D printing was evaluated. The results show that 3D printed PBT/CNT objects have better conductive and mechanical properties and a better performance than 3D printed PBT/graphene structures. In addition to that, printing more than one material (multi-materials) and challenges in using abrasive conductive fillers (i.e., CNT and graphene) are also discussed. Overall this study demonstrates that a commercially available desktop 3D printer can be used to fabricate low-cost functional objects.