Methods of Utilizing Earth-Abundant and Lunar Minerals in Material Extrusion-Based Additive Manufacturing
AuthorHayes, Anna K.
Potter, Barrett G.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction, presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractAdditive manufacturing methods have great potential for rapid production of parts and devices in remote areas with limited access to supply chains. This work examines the use of mineral resources for inexpensive and low-energy additive manufacturing. Silica, basalt, and Lunar regolith simulant (LRS) were processed for use as additive manufacturing feedstock in conjunction with polymeric binders. Mineral powders were chemically functionalized and combined with acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) at filler loadings up to 5 wt.% to create 3D printed structures using the fused deposition modeling (FDM) process. The mechanical properties of the resulting structures were characterized by tensile testing and analysis of fracture surfaces. Alternatively, processed minerals were used to prepare inks for robocasting using Pluronic F127 hydrogels as a carrier. Minerals were added in increasing concentrations to determine the maximum filler loading that could be used to create an ink with suitable viscosity for the robocasting process. Hydrogels containing 52-57 wt.% mineral fillers were used as feedstock. By sintering the 3D printed green bodies, structural ceramics may be produced using this process. This work provides methods for producing structures and devices on demand in hostile environments through efficient in situ resource utilization.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
Materials Science & Engineering