Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Rebecca Cortez




3D printing


3D printing technology is a process of synthesizing an object by slicing a three-dimensional object into two-dimensional layers. It is making its mark as it reshapes product development and manufacturing industry in which everyone can participate in the process of 3D printing.The demand for various types of materials is increasing as customers become more innovative with designs. The overarching goal of this project was to create innovative 3D printing materials for a conventional 3D printer. Conductive filaments allow us to 3D print electrically conductive components using almost any commercially available desktop 3D printer. The electrically conductive filament for this research was made with carbon black and clear polylactic acid (PLA) pellets. Two different experimental methods were carried out to produce electrically conductive filaments. The first method involved a heating treatment of PLA pellets whereas the second method included a plasticizer to ease the process. Resistance measurements were taken for samples produced with both methods. The resistance increased as the length of the sample increased while the width was held constant. The resistance measurements were inconsistent which may be due to the non-uniform surface. The surface and cross sections of a 3D sample were studied under scanning electron microscope (SEM) machine. Certain features of the composite as well as the thermoplastic were observed with the SEM images.