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  1. Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 21, 2025
  2. Microneedles are highly sought after for medicinal and cosmetic applications. However, the current manufacturing process for microneedles remains complicated, hindering its applicability to a broader variety of applications. As diffraction lithography has been recently reported as a simple method for fabricating solid microneedles, this paper presents the experimental validation of the use of ultraviolet light diffraction to control the liquid-to-solid transition of photosensitive resin to define the microneedle shape. The shapes of the resultant microneedles were investigated utilizing the primary experimental parameters including the photopattern size, ultraviolet light intensity, and the exposure time. Our fabrication results indicated that the fabricated microneedles became taller and larger in general when the experimental parameters were increased. Additionally, our investigation revealed four unique crosslinked resin morphologies during the first growth of the microneedle: microlens, first harmonic, first bell-tip, and second harmonic shapes. Additionally, by tilting the light exposure direction, a novel inclined microneedle array was fabricated for the first time. The fabricated microneedles were characterized with skin insertion and force-displacement tests. This experimental study enables the shapes and mechanical properties of the microneedles to be predicted in advance for mass production and wide practical use for biomedical or cosmetic applications. 
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