Xpandables: Single-filament Multi-property 3D Printing by Programmable Foaming

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review

51 Downloads (Pure)


We propose a new approach to obtain local property variations in 3D-printed objects using a single-nozzle 3D printer and one filament. We use foaming filaments which expand at different rates due to different temperatures. We present an approach to harness this varying expansion by including parameters of the 3D printing process in the design space. This makes the foaming programmable and allows for achieving a wide variety of properties from a single material. We show how objects with locally varying shade, translucency, gloss, and texture can be fabricated. Our approach turns single-nozzle 3D printers into more versatile systems while eliminating the challenges of multi-material 3D printing. This is in contrast to the drive towards an increasing number of printable materials and more complex 3D printers. We demonstrate the capability of our approach by 3D printing objects with embedded barcodes, QR codes, and varying tactile properties.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI 2023 - Extended Abstracts of the 2023 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery (ACM)
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781450394222
Publication statusPublished - 2023
Event2023 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Congress Center Hamburg (CCH), Hamburg, Germany
Duration: 23 Apr 202328 Apr 2023

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings


Conference2023 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Abbreviated titleCHI'23
Internet address

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project https://www.openaccess.nl/en/you-share-we-take-care Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • 3D printing
  • digital fabrication
  • foaming filaments
  • personal fabrication


Dive into the research topics of 'Xpandables: Single-filament Multi-property 3D Printing by Programmable Foaming'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this