Z Spools - Filament from Invasive Mussels
We’re always interested in the way our customers use our products. From recycling to the development of new and custom filaments, our customers continually show their creativity and brilliance. It’s one of the best parts of working here at Filabot.
We recently learned of one of those creative and brilliant developments using Filabot equipment. Lorena James of Davidson University has created filament by extruding an invasive species of mussel. Yes, you read that right.
She’s named her product Z Spools and utilizes polylactic acid to break down quagga mussels. She then combines that material with recyclable plastic to create a hybrid filament that will print on a standard 3D printer.
The filament isn't simply a creative use of materials, it's helping to solve a problem in that quagga mussels are an invasive and destructive species. There's a substantial impact on Lake Erie from their invasion.
She is currently exploring taking the product to market and has filed a utility patent. If it goes through, she’s interested to see where this goes. We applaud her and her efforts. We hope she'll keep us up to date of what's going on.
When we consider raw materials in this way, it’s easy to see a lot of potentials. What else can be made into filament? With the right approach and equipment, anything could be extruded. It’s this mission that keeps us developing new products and serving the community of innovators as best we can.
Have you created some bizarre filament you want us to know about? Whether you’ve extruded it with a Filabot or not, we want to hear from you!
We were first alerted to Lorena and her amazing mission from an article on ALL3DP. You can read that article here: https://all3dp.com/4/z-spools-is-an-environmentally-friendly-filament-made-from-invasive-quagga-mussels/