Novel Procedure for Laboratory Scale Production of Composite Functional Filaments for Additive Manufacturing
|Author/s||Díaz García, Álvaro
Law, Jia Yan
Cota Reguero, Agustín
Ramírez Rico, Joaquín
Franco García, Victorino
|Department||Universidad de Sevilla. Departamento de Física de la Materia Condensada|
|Abstract||Successful 3D printing by material extrusion of functional parts for new devices requires high quality filaments. Uniform homogeneity and good dispersion of particles embedded in filaments typically takes several cycles ...
Successful 3D printing by material extrusion of functional parts for new devices requires high quality filaments. Uniform homogeneity and good dispersion of particles embedded in filaments typically takes several cycles of extrusion or well-prepared feedstock by injection molding, industrial kneaders or twin-screw compounding. These methods need specific production devices that are not available in many laboratories non-specialized in polymer research, such as those working on different material science and technology topics that try to connect with additive manufacturing. Therefore, laboratory studies are usually limited to compositions and filler concentrations provided by commercial companies. Here, we present an original laboratory scale methodology to custom-prepare the feedstock for extruding magnetic composite filaments for fused filament fabrication (FFF), which is attainable by a desktop single-screw extruder. It consists in encapsulating the fillers in custom made capsules that are used as feedstock and reach the melting area of the extruder maintaining the same concentration of fillers. Results have shown that our approach can create smooth and continuous composite filaments with good homogeneity and printability with fine level of dimensional control. We further show the good dispersion of the particles in the composite filament using X-Ray Tomography, which enabled a 3D reconstruction of the spacial distribution of the embedded magnetic particles. The major advantage of this new way of preparing the composite feedstock is that it avoids the hassle of multiple extrusion runs and industrial machinery, yet providing uniform filaments of well controlled filler concentration, which is predictable and reproducible. The proposed methodology is suitable for different polymer matrices and applicable to other functional particle types, not just limited to magnetic ones. This opens an avenue for further laboratory scale development of novel functional composite filaments, useful for any community. This democratization of complex filament preparation, including consumers preparing their own desired uniform novel filaments, will facilitate to unify efforts nearing 3D printing of new functional devices.
|Funding agencies||European Commission (EC). Fondo Europeo de Desarrollo Regional (FEDER)
Junta de Andalucía
|Citation||Díaz García, Á., Law, J.Y., Cota Reguero, A., Bellido-Correa, A., Ramírez Rico, J., Schäfer, R. y Franco García, V. (2020). Novel Procedure for Laboratory Scale Production of Composite Functional Filaments for Additive Manufacturing. Materials Today Communications, 24, 101049. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mtcomm.2020.101049.|
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