The incremental trend in the practical applications of Additive Manufacturing (AM) brings up the challenge of developing novel methods for the fabrication of new materials. Thermoset polymers such as silicone are considered challenging materials in terms of the AM adoption. Printing silicone at a high speed may revolutionize multiple industries, specifically the medical sector. In this paper, a hybrid system that combines material jetting and material extrusion AM processes will be introduced. This method is not only capable of printing the non-Newtonian viscous silicone, but also increases the fabrication velocity between 10 to 20 times compared to the regular extrusion methods. Statistical optimization methods are employed to explore the optimum range of input parameters with the goal to maximize the 3D printing resolution, and improve the surface quality of 3D printed features. Finally, the working principle of the hybrid manufacturing method will be explained based on the surface characterization results.
Materials & design – Elsevier
Published: Jan 15, 2018
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