Believe It: Carbon Nanotube 3D Printer Filament is Pretty Strong

Bending a 3D print made from carbon nanotubes

Bending a 3D print made from carbon nanotubes

A new video from a supplier of carbon nanotube-infused 3D printer filament demonstrates amazing strength. 

The video, produced by Avante Technology, shows a small test piece printed in FilaOne Gray, their new carbon nanotube 3D printer filament. The filament isn’t actually made exclusively from carbon nanotubes, but instead is a composite of carbon nanotubes and carefully selected plastic. 

I described this particular filament in an earlier post, and if you read that item, you’ll learn that this material is not only strong, but also has a number of other very useful engineering properties such as significant chemical resistance, light weight, odor and particle-free during 3D printing and it’s hydrophobic, too. 

But today I’m very interested in the strength property, which Avante Technology demonstrates in their new video. It shows the small part being drilled, bent at torturous angles and then supporting 1,000 times its own weight. 

I’m fascinated with this and other more advanced 3D printer filaments because they’re showing the way forward in the industry: the days of using plastics designed for other purposes in 3D printers will begin to wane as new materials specifically designed for 3D printing applications will eventually surge take over the market. 

While materials such as ABS and PLA are commonplace in the industry, they’re actually not particularly good for many applications and have caused the incorporation of extra features in machines simply to permit printing them. The better choice is simply to use materials that work. 

It’s taken years but now the 3D printing market has attracted the attention of several major chemical companies who are busily designing a number of new plastic materials specifically for use in 3D printing. 

We’re just beginning to see the appearance of such advanced materials, and one of them is FilaOne from Avante Technology. However, it’s premium priced as you might expect, at USD$199 per 500g spool. If want to try it, the company also offers a smaller sample spool at only USD$25. 

Via Avante Technology

General Fabb

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has been writing Fabbaloo posts since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!