As a new and exciting year in 3D printing technology approaches, we thought it would be appropriate to light the path towards 2017 with the highest trending filaments from the end of this past year. We gathered data from our global user base to create 3D Printing Filament Trends January 2017, an insightful report on the newest innovative filaments on the market, as well as those that are on the way.

The new range of filaments address a number of the issues that the industry has been criticized for in the past, such as lack of mechanical strength and environmental impact. We’ve seen a handful of tougher materials with enhanced functionality, such as Haydale Graphene, Treed P-lene, and rigid.ink TPU. Filaments like the garbage-based 3D-Fuel Landfillament, the bio-organic Extrudr Green-TEC, Voltivo EVO and Algix Dura have arisen as a solution for environmental concerns, ABS replacement and high temperature resistance.

The number of carbon fiber-based composites also continues to grow with 3DS Carbon Fibre Filament and 3DXTech’s new Carbon Fiber NYLON and PEEK filaments. Filament.directory users have also had a keen sense for good looks as well, with Matte Fibre HTPLA and Polymaker PVB.

Other unique materials—such as the Formfutura HD Glass and Metalfil, as well as Proto Pasta’s Aromatic Pine and Aromatic Cinnamon HTPLA— have reflected a place in the market for funky speciality filaments. The Adam Beane Cx5 filament claims to offer the ability promise to be able to sculpt the 3D printed object while Virtual Foundry allows you to print metal parts directly from your desktop printer !

As for new filaments that will come out next year, we’ve already noticed similar trends to December 2016, especially with products aimed to improve the state of our environment. From the plastic waste-based Tridea, to the cellulose fiber composed Sharebot 3DPaper, to Superior Filament, which claims that each spool is equivalent to 120 water bottles on their crowdfunding campaign, it’s clear that the industry is looking to thrive without harming mother nature.

There’s a plethora of other filaments on the Filaments.directory January 2017 Trends report, so be sure to check out the other newly released and announced filaments. In addition to the information on new filaments, we also used our data to showcase the overall state of our community trends in December, allowing us to forecast what is to come in 2017. PLA still the most widely used type of plastic, making up 51.77% followed by ABS at 24.01%. We’ve also compiled data on nozzle diameter, “superpower” filaments, and more.

Perhaps the most impressive statistic is the steady growth from the number of filaments referenced on the directory. Since March 2016, the amount of filaments referenced has more than doubling from 1,250 to over 3,000 in an eight-month period. All in all, what our data tells us is that highly mechanical and environmentally conscious materials are solidifying themselves at forefront the filament market.

You can aid in our effort to provide information and optimize the use of filaments by contributing your own user settings to the directory throughout the new year!