skip to main content


Title: Large Biaxial Recovered Strains in Self‐Shrinking 3D Shape‐Memory Polymer Parts Programmed via Printing with Application to Improve Cell Seeding
Abstract

Trapping of strain in layers deposited during extrusion‐based (fused filament fabrication) 3D printing has previously been documented. If fiber‐level strain trapping can be understood sufficiently and controlled, 3D shape‐memory polymer parts could be simultaneously fabricated and programmed via printing (programming via printing; PvP), thereby achieving precisely controlled 3D‐to‐3D transformations of complex part geometries. Yet, because previous studies have only examined strain trapping in solid printed parts—such as layers or 3D objects with 100% infill—fundamental aspects of the PvP process and the potential for PvP to be applied to printing of porous 3D parts remain poorly understood. This work examines the extent to which strain can be trapped in individual fibers and in fibers that span negative space and the extent to which infill geometry affects the magnitude and recovery of strain trapped in porous PvP‐fabricated 3D parts. Additionally, multiaxial shape change of porous PvP‐fabricated 3D parts are for the first time studied, modeled, and applied in a proof‐of‐concept application. This work demonstrates the feasibility of strain trapping in individual fibers in 1D, 2D, and 3D PvP‐fabricated parts and illustrates the potential for PvP to provide new strategies to address unmet needs in biomedical and other fields.

 
more » « less
Award ID(s):
2022421
NSF-PAR ID:
10395869
Author(s) / Creator(s):
 ;  ;  ;  ;  
Publisher / Repository:
Wiley Blackwell (John Wiley & Sons)
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Advanced Materials Technologies
Volume:
8
Issue:
9
ISSN:
2365-709X
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. This research investigates the design of structurally performant, lightweight architectural elements produced through concrete 3D printing (C3DP). Traditionally, concrete requires dense and sturdy formwork, whose production adds significantly to the total cost and results in massive and heavy parts after demolding. C3DP offers the unique opportunity to both eliminate the need for formwork and to create lighter parts by introducing internal voids and cavities. The advent of additive manufacturing in a broad range of scales, materials, industries, and applications, led to increased interest and intense research into different types of porous structures, their geometry, and structural performance under various boundary conditions. Precise control over the sparse distribution of material allows not only for parts with similar strength at reduced mass but even for modifications of mechanical properties, like turning brittle materials into elastic or shock-absorbent ones. While with powder-based additive manufacturing processes like metal 3D printing, truss-based lattices have become very popular for the light-weighting of parts or to provide tissue growth scaffolds for medical implants, their geometry – a sparse space frame resulting in numerous individual contour islands and accentuated overhangs – cannot as easily be produced by C3DP, which is based on a continuous material extrusion. Alternative types of micro-structures, so-called triply periodic minimal surfaces (TPMS), are better suited for this process as they are, as their name suggests, consisting of one continuous surface dividing space into two separate but interwoven subspaces. TPMS are therefore very popular for the efficient design of heat exchangers. We develop and present a continuous and integrated workflow, in which the architectural elements and their structural requirements are designed through transitioning back and forth between the force and the form diagram using 3D graphic statics [1]. The members and their topology from the abstract graph of the conceptual form diagram are seamlessly connected to the volumetric modeling (VM) framework, responsible for the definition of the part geometry [2]. VM represents form assigned distance functions (SDF) and can easily handle complex topologies and flawless Boolean operations of not only the outer shell geometry but also the internal micro-structural infill patterns (Fig. 1, a). In an iterative feedback loop, the infill can be further optimized to leave the material only along certain internal stress trajectories (force flows). This functional grading controlling the relative density is done based on the FE analysis results. The stress distribution is thereby defined as a three-dimensional field (Fig. 1, b). Its values can factor into the SDF equation and be used to modify the wavelength (periodicity) of the TPMS, the local thickness of the surface shell, the solid to void fraction by shifting the threshold iso-value or even the alignment and orientation of the unit cells (Fig. 1, c). They can be arranged in an orthogonal, polar- or even spherical coordinate system to optimally adapt to structural necessities. The TPMS pattern can also gradually transition from one type into another type along the gradient of a spatial function. 
    more » « less
  2. Abstract

    Fiber‐filled composite materials offer a unique pathway to enable new functionalities for systems built via extrusion‐based additive manufacturing (or “3D printing”); however, challenges remain in controlling the fiber orientations that govern ultimate performance. In this work, a multi‐material, shape‐changing nozzle—constructed by means of PolyJet 3D printing—is presented that allows for the spatial distribution of short fibers embedded in polymer matrices to be modulated on demand throughout extrusion‐based deposition processes. Specifically, the nozzle comprises flexible bladders that can be inflated pneumatically to alter the geometry of the material extrusion channel from a straight to a converging–diverging configuration, and in turn, the directional orientation of fibers within printed filaments. Experimental results for printing carbon microfiber‐hydrogel composites reveal that increasing the nozzle actuation pressure from 0 to 100 kPa reduced the proportion of aligned fibers, and notably, prompted a transition from anisotropic to isotropic water‐induced swelling properties (i.e., the ratio of transverse to longitudinal swelling strain decreased from 1.73 ± 0.37 to 0.93 ± 0.39, respectively). In addition, dynamically varying the nozzle geometry during the extrusion of continuous composite filaments effects distinct swelling behaviors in adjacent regions, suggesting potential utility of the presented approach for emerging “4D printing” applications.

     
    more » « less
  3. Abstract

    3D printing, formally known as additive manufacturing, creates complex geometries via layer‐by‐layer addition of materials. While 3D printing has been historically perceived as the static addition of build layers, 3D printing is now considered as a dynamic assembly process. In this context, here a new 3D printing process is reported that executes full degree‐of‐freedom (DOF) transformation (translating, rotating, and scaling) of each individual building layer while utilizing continuous fabrication techniques. Transforming individual building layers within the sequential layered manufacturing process enables dynamic transformation of the 3D printed parts on‐the‐fly, eliminating the time‐consuming redesign steps. Preserving the locality of the transformation to each layer further enables the discrete conformal transformation, allowing objects such as vascular scaffolds to be optimally fabricated to properly fit within specific patient anatomy obtained from the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) measurements. Finally, exploiting the freedom to control the orientation of each individual building layer, multimaterials, multiaxis 3D printing capability are further established for integrating functional modules made of dissimilar materials in 3D printed devices. This final capability is demonstrated through 3D printing a soft pneumatic gripper via heterogenous integration of rigid base and soft actuating limbs.

     
    more » « less
  4. Wrinkle topographies have been studied as simple, versatile, and in some cases biomimetic surface functionalization strategies. To fabricate surface wrinkles, one material phenomenon employed is the mechanical-instability-driven wrinkling of thin films, which occurs when a deforming substrate produces sufficient compressive strain to buckle a surface thin film. Although thin-film wrinkling has been studied on shape-changing functional materials, including shape-memory polymers (SMPs), work to date has been primarily limited to simple geometries, such as flat, uniaxially-contracting substrates. Thus, there is a need for a strategy that would allow deformation of complex substrates or 3D parts to generate wrinkles on surfaces throughout that complex substrate or part. Here, 4D printing of SMPs is combined with polymeric and metallic thin films to develop and study an approach for fiber-level topographic functionalization suitable for use in printing of arbitrarily complex shape-changing substrates or parts. The effect of nozzle temperature, substrate architecture, and film thickness on wrinkles has been characterized, as well as wrinkle topography on nuclear alignment using scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, and fluorescent imaging. As nozzle temperature increased, wrinkle wavelength increased while strain trapping and nuclear alignment decreased. Moreover, with increasing film thickness, the wavelength increased as well.

     
    more » « less
  5. Abstract

    Assembling 2D materials such as MXenes into functional 3D aerogels using 3D printing technologies gains attention due to simplicity of fabrication, customized geometry and physical properties, and improved performance. Also, the establishment of straightforward electrode fabrication methods with the aim to hinder the restack and/or aggregation of electrode materials, which limits the performance of the electrode, is of great significant. In this study, unidirectional freeze casting and inkjet‐based 3D printing are combined to fabricate macroscopic porous aerogels with vertically aligned Ti3C2Txsheets. The fabrication method is developed to easily control the aerogel microstructure and alignment of the MXene sheets. The aerogels show excellent electromechanical performance so that they can withstand almost 50% compression before recovering to the original shape and maintain their electrical conductivities during continuous compression cycles. To enhance the electrochemical performance, an inkjet‐printed MXene current collector layer is added with horizontally aligned MXene sheets. This combines the superior electrical conductivity of the current collector layer with the improved ionic diffusion provided by the porous electrode. The cells fabricated with horizontal MXene sheets alignment as current collector with subsequent vertical MXene sheets alignment layers show the best electrochemical performance with thickness‐independent capacitive behavior.

     
    more » « less