3D Printing of Biomass-fungi Composite Materials

Z. J. Pei.

Dr. Z. J. Pei

Professor and Holder of the Mike
and Sugar Barnes Professorship II, Industrial & Systems Engineering, Texas A&M


Friday, November 4, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

(1-hour seminar, followed by a pizza lunch)


In Person: Room 151, Chrysler Center, 2121 Bonisteel Blvd, Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Virtual: Via Zoom

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3D Printing of Biomass-fungi Composite Materials


Miki Banu | ISD Associate Chair for Doctoral Education and Research

Collegiate Research Professor | Mechanical Engineering

Judy Jin | ISD Manufacturing Program Director | Professor of IOE


This presentation is about a 3D-printing based method to manufacture environment-friendly products using biomass (from agricultural wastes such as wheat straw and switchgrass) and fungi. The biomass serves as a nutrition source for fungi, and the fungi grow through the biomass particles and bind the biomass particles together. Products manufactured using this method can substitute those currently made from petroleum-based plastics. Initial targeted applications of these manufactured products will be in packaging, furniture, and construction. The presentation will cover three experimental studies on feasibility of this new method, the relationship between the composition of the mixture (prepared for 3D printing) and print quality, and the relationship between waiting time (from the time when the mixture is prepared till the time 3D printing is performed) and properties of the prepared mixture. The presentation will conclude by discussing research challenges and future research topics for this new manufacturing method.

Speaker Bio:

Z. J. Pei is a Professor in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Texas A&M University (TAMU). He is the holder of the Rader Professorship II. He is also the Director of Engineering Research Development Services. Prior to joining TAMU, he was a professor and the inaugural holder of Ice Professorship in the Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering at Kansas State University. From November 2016 to November 2017, he was an ASME Foundation Swanson Fellow, serving as the Assistant Director for Research Partnerships at the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office hosted by NIST. From August 2012 to August 2016, he served as the Program Director of the Manufacturing Machines and Equipment program at NSF, and received Director’s Award for Excellence Program Director. He has served as an associate editor for four journals and an editorial board member for seven journals. He has published about 200 journal papers and more than 160 conference papers. He is a fellow of ASME, SME, and IISE. He received his PhD degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His research interests are in both additive and subtractive manufacturing processes.