AMS Spring 2023

Improving Mechanical Properties of 3D Printing with Continuous Carbon Fiber Shape Memory Composites

6K SmarTech

Share this Article

Researchers Yongsan An and Woon-Ryeol Yu explore improved 3D printing through the study of alternative materials. In the recently published ‘Three-dimensional printing of continuous carbon fiber-reinforced shape memory polymer composites,’ the authors discuss challenges with mechanical properties that plague many industrial users.

In this study, they experiment with continuous carbon fiber reinforced shape memory polymer composites (SMPC), in FDM 3D printing—using both thermoplastics and thermosets.

Mechanical properties of continuous fiber-reinforced polymer composites, short fiber reinforced polymer composites, and polymer matrix fabricated by FDM.

Parameters were tested, and samples were printed, as the researchers learned more about the benefits and limits of smart materials like SMPs—able to change with their environment and then morph back to their normal shape. This type of material borders on the 4D and allows users much greater flexibility in use—across a wide variety of applications. With the addition of carbon composites, the research team hoped to improve fabrication processes.

The team created a customized FDM 3D printer for the study, to fabricate continuous fiber-reinforced SMPC parts. For materials, two different types were chosen for evaluation: PLA and a polyurethane-type of SMP filaments (as the thermoplastic matrices) and an SMP epoxy as the thermoset matrix. The team then added the continuous carbon fibers for reinforcement to the filament.

Schematic diagram of the 3D printing system of continuous carbon fiber-reinforced polymer composites for (a) thermoplastics and (b) thermosets.

They experimented with differences in temperature and print speed in printing out samples to be tested. Mechanical and shape memory properties were then assessed by the team.

3D printing of CF and PLA composites. (a) only PLA, (b) 1.5 mm-diameter nozzle, and (c) 2 mm- diameter nozzle.

“The storage modulus (G’), loss modulus (G’’), and the viscosity of the PLA were decreased around its melting point. The storage modulus was decreased at a larger rate than the loss modulus, resulting in more liquid-like properties of PLA. Therefore, the PLA could be easily extruded from the nozzle of which temperature was 180℃,” the researchers wrote.

“The PLA filament without CF was smoothly extruded from a nozzle whether its diameter was larger than the fusion area or not. However, for a nozzle with 1.5 mm diameter, the PLA matrix was extruded like wrapping the CF helically. It was due to a fact that the PLA was extruded more than the CF because the CF was not stretched during extrusion. In addition, harsh temperature and different extrusion speed caused CF to fail during 3D printing. On the other hand, for a nozzle with 2 mm diameter, the PLA and CF were extruded straightly because their extrusion speeds were synchronized.”

There were numerous challenges—such as the CF not coated completely with PLA. The researchers created an improved printhead for better optimization in terms of supplying speed of PLA and CF and the structure and fusion time of the materials. They also added calendar rolls and a proper tension device.

“The printed SMPC showed good mechanical properties compared to those of conventionally 3D printed polymer in the fiber direction,” stated the researchers.

Strength and stability in mechanical properties are a constant challenge in 3D printing—but there are constant improvements as researchers are determined to perfect the materials and processes of progressive fabrication techniques from testing carbon lattices, to titanium, to examining issues in biocompatibility.

What do you think of this news? Let us know your thoughts! Join the discussion of this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com.

[Source / Images: Three-dimensional printing of continuous carbon fiber-reinforced shape memory polymer composites]

Share this Article


Recent News

ColdMetalFusion Alliance Announces First Two End-to-End Platforms for Metal 3D Printing

3D Printing News Unpeeled: India and 3D Printing, Table top games and Lithoz



Categories

3D Design

3D Printed Art

3D Printed Food

3D Printed Guns


You May Also Like

3D Printing News Unpeeled: 3D Printing MEMS, Desktop Metal gets a $9 Million Order

Props for the movie Black Panther Wakanda Forever have been 3D printed, Desktop Metal reports that it has received a $9 million order from an unnamed European automaker. Research looks...

3D Printing News Unpeeled: Warhammer, AVIC and Pearson Lloyd

Today we look deeper in to Warhammer 40K and other table top games. Why is 3D printing being used for these games and why has it not spread? How come...

3D Printing Webinar and Event Roundup: November 27, 2022

Coming off of Thanksgiving in the U.S., we’re still at low mass when it comes to 3D printing webinars and events, but there are still a few offerings this week,...

3D Printing News Unpeeled: Zimmer Biomet, Recyclable 3D Printed Homes and Minifactory

Minifactory just unveiled a double as fast high temperature Material Extrusion system for PEEK and other high temperature polymers. It has better control over the heated chamber, improved air flow...