When it comes to choosing a filament for 3D printing, there are tons of options available, each of which offers unique properties. Some 3D printing filaments are made by mixing a fine powder into a base material and others boast all-natural, nontoxic and 100% compostable benefits.
As part of an entrepreneurship class, Lorena James developed an idea called 'Z Spools' for a 3D printer filament made from the shell of the quagga mussel. On top of addressing a potential way to deal with an invasive species, this filament for 3D printing introduces a sustainable material for additive manufacturing.
The concept was entered into the Cleveland Water Alliance Erie Hack competition and won. Now, James is proceeding with a utility patent application and is looking to mass produce the innovative product.