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Graduate Defense: Kiyo Fujimoto

October 21 @ 8:00 am - 10:00 am MDT

Dissertation Information

Title: Additive Manufacturing of Sensors for Extreme Environments

Program: Doctor of Philosophy in Materials Science and Engineering

Advisor: Dr. David Estrada, Materials Science and Engineering

Committee Members: Dr. Claire Xiong, Materials Science and Engineering, Dr. Emily Heckman, Materials Science and Engineering, and Dr. Brian Jaques, Materials Science and Engineering


Advanced manufacturing based direct-write technologies have emerged as the predominant enabler for the fabrication of active and passive sensors for use in harsh operating environments. The ability to directly write and integrate electronic components onto physical packaging can be achieved with additive manufacturing (AM) methods such as direct write technologies (DWT) which include aerosol jet printing (AJP), Ink Jet Printing (IJP), Plasma Jet Printing (PJP), and Micro-Dispense Printing (MDP). In this work, we investigate the use of these methods to accelerate, modernize, and enhance the functionality of sensors and instrumentation to achieve the goal of improving the safety and efficiency of processes that take place within harsh environments. This dissertation accomplishes with the following activities: (1) The development of synthesis methods to produce exotic feedstock materials compatible with DWTs, (2) an investigation targeting structural health monitoring of space habitats with the development of AJP capacitive strain gauges, (3) an investigation on the melt behavior of AM melt wires by benchmarking the performance of AM melt wires to their classically fabricated counterparts for peak temperature monitoring in nuclear reactors, and (4) the development of AM neutron dosimeters for directional flux monitoring in the TREAT reactor. The results from these activities highlight DWTs as potential solutions for the development of miniature and robust sensors that are difficult to achieve with traditional fabrication methods for nuclear and aerospace instrumentation.