Faculty Advisor

Gatsonis, Nikolaos A.

Project Center

MIT Lincoln Laboratory-Lexington, Massachusetts


This project investigates the effects of build parameters on the properties of a thermoplastic used in fused deposition modeling technology at MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Dogbone and cubed shaped FDM samples were produced with varying raster angle, build orientation, bead width, and number of plies. Tensile strength experiments are presented and show that unlike typical polymers FDM parts fail due to brittle fracture, while parts built with larger bead-width are more ductile. Structural simulations are presented with the samples considered as orthotropic composite laminates. Thermal expansion experiments show that FDM parts expand 15% less than bulk material. Heat transfer simulations are presented for samples with various raster angle orientations and temperatures between -55°C to 85°C.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

October 2013


Mechanical Engineering

Project Type

Major Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Mechanical Engineering

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