Direct 3D printing of a two-part silicone resin to fabricate highly stretchable structures


Robotics and Mechatronics Engineering

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The direct ink writing (DIW) method of 3D-printing liquid resins has shown promising results in various applications such as flexible electronics, medical devices, and soft robots. A cost-effective extrusion system for a two-part high-viscous resin is developed in this article to fabricate soft and immensely stretchable structures. A static mixer capable of evenly mixing two viscous resins in an extremely low flow regime is designed based on the required mixing performance through a series of biphasic computational fluid dynamics analyses. The printing parameters of the extrusion system are determined empirically, and the mechanical properties of the printed samples are compared to their molded counterparts. Furthermore, some potential applications of the system in soft robotics and medical training are demonstrated. This research provides a clear guide for utilizing DIW to 3D print highly stretchable structures.

Journal Title

Progress in Additive Manufacturing

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