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Title: Analytical Study and Experimental Verification of Shear-Thinning Ink Flow in Direct Ink Writing Process

Direct ink writing (DIW) process is a facile additive manufacturing technology to fabricate three-dimensional (3D) objects with various materials. Its versatility has attracted considerable interest in academia and industry in recent years. As such, upsurging endeavors are invested in advancing the ink flow behaviors in order to optimize the process resolution and the printing quality. However, so far, the physical phenomena during the DIW process are not revealed in detail, leaving a research gap between the physical experiments and its underlying theories. Here, we present a comprehensive analytical study of non-Newtonian ink flow behavior during the DIW process. Different syringe-nozzle geometries are modeled for the comparative case studies. By using the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation method, we reveal the shear-thinning property during the ink extrusion process. Besides, we study the viscosity, shear stress, and velocity fields, and analyze the advantages and drawbacks of each syringe-nozzle model. On the basis of these investigations and analyses, we propose an improved syringe-nozzle geometry for stable extrusion and high printing quality. A set of DIW printing experiments and rheological characterizations are carried out to verify the simulation studies. The results developed in this work offer an in-depth understanding of the ink flow behavior in the DIW process, providing valuable guidelines for optimizing the physical DIW configuration toward high-resolution printing and, consequently, improving the performance of DIW-printed objects.

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Award ID(s):
1846863 2134409
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Journal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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