Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science in Applied Physics - (M.S.)



First Advisor

John Francis Federici

Second Advisor

Ian Gatley

Third Advisor

Benjamin P. Thomas


Automatic identification and data capture, or AIDC, plays a substantial role in contemporary business, advertising, and military needs. The purpose of this study is to generate a potential alternative to current AIDC approaches by constructing three-dimensional plastic tags (or ‘3D QR codes’) using additive manufacturing techniques and interrogate them using Terahertz radiation. 3D Quick Response (QR) codes are designed in 3D computer-aided design software. The QR codes are 3D structures embedded in the printed plastic in which an air gap in the plastic (or an air gap filled in with another type of plastic) indicates a bit of information. Information is encoded into the structure via the absence or presence of an air gap as well as its physical distance from the front surface of the plastic. The QR codes are fabricated using a fusion deposition modeling (FDM) 3D printer. The embedded information in the QR code is read out using time-domain Terahertz (THz) electromagnetic pulses.