Researchers at the ATLAS Institute and the University of Colorado Boulder, led by Michael Rivera, assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science, have developed a new method for 3D printing using coffee grounds. This innovative approach; It uses old coffee grounds, water and a few sustainable additives to create a paste suitable for 3D printing a wide range of objects, from jewelry to plant pots and even espresso cups.
The process is not only environmentally friendly but also simple. This makes it adaptable to most low-cost consumer-grade 3D printers. The team’s vision is to reduce plastic waste and make 3D printing more sustainable. Discarded coffee grounds can be reused in this process, thus further reducing the environmental impact.
A paste with a peanut butter-like consistency is obtained by combining dried coffee grounds, cellulose gum and xanthan gum with water. Some modifications to the 3D printers are required to accommodate the coffee paste, but the resulting objects are surprisingly durable, similar to unreinforced concrete.
In addition to creating pots and sustainable electronic components, the team’s work could pave the way for exploring other sustainable 3D printing materials as alternatives to plastic. The study could contribute to a more environmentally friendly future for 3D printing technology.
Compiled by: Eliz Canyurt