Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

3D inks that can be erased selectively

16.08.2018

KIT scientists develop method for the specific degradation of laser-written microstructures -- Paper in Nature Communications

3D printing by direct laser writing enables production of micro-meter-sized structures for many applications, from biomedicine to microelectronics to optical metamaterials. Researchers of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) have now developed 3D inks that can be erased selectively.


These are three-dimensional microstructures made of various cleavable photoresists. The scanning electron microscopies show the selective degradation of the structures (scaling 20 μm).

Credit: Nature Communications

This allows specific degradation and reassembly of highly precise structures on the micrometer and nanometer scales. The new photoresists are presented in the journal Nature Communications (DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-05234-0).

3D printing is gaining importance, as it allows for the efficient manufacture of complex geometries. A very promising method is direct laser writing: a computer-controlled focused laser beam acts as a pen and produces the desired structure in a photoresist. In this way, three-dimensional structures with details in the sub-micrometer range can be produced.

"The high resolution is very attractive for applications requiring very precise filigree structures, such as in biomedicine, microfluidics, microelectronics or for optical metamaterials," say Professor Christopher Barner-Kowollik, Head of the Macromolecular Architectures Group of KIT's Institute for Chemical Technology and Polymer Chemistry (ITCP) and of the Soft Matter Materials Group of Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane, Australia, and Dr. Eva Blasco of the ITCP of KIT.

Over a year ago, KIT researchers already succeeded in expanding the possibilities of direct laser writing: the working groups of Professor Martin Wegener at the Institute of Applied Physics (APH) and the Institute of Nanotechnology (INT) of KIT and of Professor Christopher Barner-Kowollik developed an erasable ink for 3D printing. Thanks to reversible binding, the building blocks of the ink can be separated again.

Now, the scientists from Karlsruhe and Brisbane have largely refined their development. As reported in the journal Nature Communications, they have developed several inks, in different colors so to speak, that can be erased independently of each other. This enables selective and sequential degradation and reassembly of the laser-written microstructures.

In case of highly complex constructions, for instance, temporary supports can be produced and removed again later on. It may also be possible to add or remove parts to or from three-dimensional scaffolds for cell growth, the objective being to observe how the cells react to such changes. Moreover, the specifically erasable 3D inks allow for the exchange of damaged or worn parts in complex structures.

When producing the cleavable photoresists, the researchers were inspired by degradable biomaterials. The photoresists are based on silane compounds that can be cleaved easily. Silanes are silicon-hydrogen compounds. The scientists used specific atom substitution for preparing the photoresists. In this way, microstructures can be degraded specifically under mild conditions without structures with other material properties being damaged. This is the major advantage over formerly used erasable 3D inks. New photoresists also contain the monomer pentaerythritol triacrylate that significantly enhances writing without affecting cleavability.

###

Original publication (Open Access):

David Gräfe, Andreas Wickberg, Markus Michael Zieger, Martin Wegener, Eva Blasco, & Christopher Barner-Kowollik: Adding chemically selective subtraction to multi-material 3D additive manufacturing. Nature Communications. 2018. DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-05234-0

Press contact: Regina Link, Press Officer, Phone: +49 721 608-21158, Email: regina.link@kit.edu

Being "The Research University in the Helmholtz Association," KIT creates and imparts knowledge for the society and the environment. It is the objective to make significant contributions to the global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility and information. For this, about 9,300 employees cooperate in a broad range of disciplines in natural sciences, engineering sciences, economics, and the humanities and social sciences. KIT prepares its 25,500 students for responsible tasks in society, industry, and science by offering research-based study programs. Innovation efforts at KIT build a bridge between important scientific findings and their application for the benefit of society, economic prosperity, and the preservation of our natural basis of life.

This press release is available on the internet at http://www.sek.kit.edu/english/press_office.php.

Media Contact

Monika Landgraf
presse@kit.edu
49-721-608-47414

 @KITKarlsruhe

http://www.kit.edu/index.php 

Monika Landgraf | EurekAlert!
Further information:
https://www.kit.edu/kit/english/pi_2018_094_3d-inks-that-can-be-erased-selectively.php
http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-05234-0

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht New method inverts the self-assembly of liquid crystals
15.04.2019 | University of Luxembourg

nachricht 'Deep learning' casts wide net for novel 2D materials
11.04.2019 | Rice University

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

A stellar flare 10 times more powerful than anything seen on our sun has burst from an ultracool star almost the same size as Jupiter

  • Coolest and smallest star to produce a superflare found
  • Star is a tenth of the radius of our Sun
  • Researchers led by University of Warwick could only see...

Im Focus: Quantum simulation more stable than expected

A localization phenomenon boosts the accuracy of solving quantum many-body problems with quantum computers which are otherwise challenging for conventional computers. This brings such digital quantum simulation within reach on quantum devices available today.

Quantum computers promise to solve certain computational problems exponentially faster than any classical machine. “A particularly promising application is the...

Im Focus: Largest, fastest array of microscopic 'traffic cops' for optical communications

The technology could revolutionize how information travels through data centers and artificial intelligence networks

Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers...

Im Focus: A long-distance relationship in femtoseconds

Physicists observe how electron-hole pairs drift apart at ultrafast speed, but still remain strongly bound.

Modern electronics relies on ultrafast charge motion on ever shorter length scales. Physicists from Regensburg and Gothenburg have now succeeded in resolving a...

Im Focus: Researchers 3D print metamaterials with novel optical properties

Engineers create novel optical devices, including a moth eye-inspired omnidirectional microwave antenna

A team of engineers at Tufts University has developed a series of 3D printed metamaterials with unique microwave or optical properties that go beyond what is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

Fraunhofer FHR at the IEEE Radar Conference 2019 in Boston, USA

09.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

New automated biological-sample analysis systems to accelerate disease detection

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

Explosion on Jupiter-sized star 10 times more powerful than ever seen on our sun

18.04.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

New eDNA technology used to quickly assess coral reefs

18.04.2019 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>