Home Materials New composite material MyCera strengthens 3D printing from clay

New composite material MyCera strengthens 3D printing from clay

Researchers at Graz University of Technology have joined forces with Italian 3D printer manufacturer WASP to develop a new composite material for 3D printing. MyCera consists of a mixture of clay, sawdust and mushroom threads. The latter serve as intelligent fiber reinforcement.

As reported by the Shape Lab at TU Graz, using a WASP Delta 40100 clay 3D printer, the addition of mycelium, the vegetative component of fungi, significantly increased the tensile strength of 3D-printed clay structures. The fungal filaments penetrate the material and form a type of reinforcement.

WASP’s large-format printer enables the printing of paste-like materials such as MyCera in this process. In various studies, the team was able to demonstrate the reinforcing effect of the mycelium.

In addition, the fungal mesh acts as a kind of bio-glue that bonds various 3D-printed clay parts together. According to the researchers, MyCera could thus represent a sustainable building material of the future and replace concrete as a binder.

Through collaboration with WASP, MyCera has been successfully adapted for 3D printing. Further studies will now investigate MyCera’s potential as a biodegradable composite material in more detail. The results give the scientists reason to be optimistic that it will enable more resource-efficient construction methods in the future.

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