Buchtel College of Arts and Sciences

Date of Last Revision

2024-06-04 07:23:26


Aerospace Systems Engineering

Honors Course

Aerospace Design Project 1 (AESE 491-001)

Number of Credits


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Date of Expected Graduation

Spring 2024


In this design project, the additive manufacturing filament of short strand carbon fiber (SSCF) reinforced polylactic acid (PLA) composite was developed. The micro-size, precision cut SSCFs were mixed with the PLA pellets through a melting homogenization process. Through this process the composite material block is cut and divided into pieces for ease of pelletizing. The material block pieces are then pelletized to be fed through the single screw extruder to develop the SSCF-PLA composite filament. The SSCF-PLA filaments were manufactured with a varying amount of SSCF ranging from 0.5% to 10% of the material block's weight. Development of a 1% by volume material block was achieved however proved to introduce more inaccuracies in the process when compared to the percentage by weight manufacturing method. The SSCF-PLA composite filament was then fed through a 3D printer to produce samples. The developed composite filaments with different SSCF contents were studied by analyzing their physical and mechanical properties. The SSCF-PLA filament composite was analyzed throughout each stage of the manufacturing process to ensure a homogenous blend of the composite. The developed composite filament has shown a reduction in yield strength (when compared to standard PLA) as there was an increase in SSCF percentage by weight. However, the amount of moisture introduced to the composite through the manufacturing process caused the composite to decrease the printability of the developed composite as the SSCF percentage by weight increased in the developed composite samples.

Research Sponsor

Dr. Manigandan Kannan

First Reader

Murali Krishnan

Second Reader

Aaron Trexler

Honors Faculty Advisor

Dr. Scott Sawyer

Proprietary and/or Confidential Information




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