Project 11: Embedded Sensing Capabilities in an FDM Printed Object (Prof. Kevin Walsh, ECE & Douglas Jackson, ECE)

The goal of this research project is to demonstrate the possibility of embedding sensors and/or microelectronic devices directly into the features of 3D printed  parts and objects.  If successful, this initiative could potentially lead to a new generation of truly “smart” additive manufactured products and systems which sense their environment and communicate with the outside world.  As a case study we developed a methodology and processing strategy to successfully embed a thin-film strain gauge into the plastic diaphragm of a FDM (fused deposition modelling) 3D printed pressure transducer, as shown in the figures to the right.

Garrett McGrady, Douglas Jackson and Kevin Walsh, University of Louisville.

This work was performed at the KY Multi-scale Core Facilities.