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Process-driven microstructure control in melt-extrusion-based 3D printing for tailorable mechanical properties in a polycaprolactone filament

DOI: 10.1002/mame.201800173 DOI Help

Authors: Fengyuan Liu (University of Manchester) , Cian Vyas (University of Manchester) , Gowsihan Poologasundarampillai (University of Birmingham) , Ian Pape (Diamond Light Source) , Srichand Hinduja (University of Manchester) , Wajira Mirihanage (University of Manchester) , Paulo Bartolo (University of Manchester)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Macromolecular Materials And Engineering , VOL 34

State: Published (Approved)
Published: May 2018
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 14877

Abstract: 3D printing techniques are utilized to produce biomaterial scaffolds with porous architectures that enable cell attachment, biological factors, and appropriate mechanical strength. As the basic building block of a scaffold, the individual filaments should have sufficient mechanical properties, comprising high compressive loading, and fracture resistance to mimic the natural tissue organisation. In this contribution, process–structure–property relationships in melt extruded polycaprolactone filaments are investigated by considering crystalline features, tensile properties, and an array of processing parameters. The tensile properties of the filaments are improved significantly with relatively higher screw rotational speed and relatively lower processing temperature resulting in considerable increase in Young's modulus. The favorable properties are attributed to the increased crystal volume fraction and anisotropy. Thus, this study provides initial pathways for the potential control of mechanical properties of bioscaffolds via engineering crystalline structural features in printed filaments.

Journal Keywords: additive manufacturing; crystallization; screw‐assisted melt extrusion; synchrotron mechanical properties; X‐ray diffraction

Subject Areas: Biology and Bio-materials


Instruments: B16-Test Beamline

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