Project 2.18: Recycling Large-Scale 3 D-Printed Polymer Composite Precast Concrete Forms

Recycling Large-Scale 3 D-Printed Polymer Composite Precast Concrete Forms


Project Summary

Large-scale thermoplastic composite extrusion-based 3D printing has been used in research labs and is moving into industry. One significant use of large-scale 3D printing has been to make forms for manufacturing precast concrete parts. Once the forms have been used for casting concrete parts, there is an opportunity to reuse the material and recycle the thermoplastic composite. Ideally, the 3D printed thermoplastic composite can be recycled into feedstock pellets that can be used again for 3D printing newer parts. However, the process of recycling 3D printed concrete forms is not well-established. Efficient ways of removing debris, cutting the 3D printed parts into smaller pieces, and pelletizing need to be figured out. The degradation in material properties with each recycling needs to be characterized and if necessary, a suitable ratio of a mix between virgin and recycled polymer needs to be determined. The cost of recycling needs to be evaluated and compared to the cost of the 3D-printed material.

Principal Investigator

Dr. Roberto A. Lopez-Anido


Dr. Sunil Bhandari
Dr. Lu Wang


University of Maine

Project Status


Project Cost


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Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology, University Transportation Centers Program, Department of Transportation, University of Maine

Implementation of Research Outcomes:

This project is in its initial research phase. Implementation of research outcomes will be reported upon completion of the research outputs.

Impacts and Benefits of Implementation:

This project is in its research phase. Impacts and benefits of the research will be reported after the implementation phase.

Printable Project Information Sheet

March 2022 Quarterly Progress Report

June 2022 Quarterly Progress Report

September 2022 Quarterly Progress Report