Researchers have developed the technology to weld adjacent 3D printed layers more effectively, increasing the final product’s reliability, according to a new study.

Plastics are a popular 3D printing material, allowing users to create a variety of objects, from simple toys to custom prosthetic parts. But these printed parts are mechanically weak—a flaw caused by the imperfect bonding between the individual printed layers that make up the 3D part.

Now, researchers have developed the technology needed to overcome 3D printing’s “weak spot.” The method integrates plasma science and carbon nanotube technology into standard 3D printing.

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