Article  Open Access  Published: 27 December 2019

Revealing interactions of layered polymeric materials at solid-liquid interface for building solvent compatibility charts for 3D printing applications
Kirill S. Erokhin, Evgeniy G. Gordeev & Valentine P. Ananikov

Scientific Reports volume 9, Article number: 20177 (2019) Cite this article

Poor stability of 3D printed plastic objects in a number of solvents limits several important applications in engineering, chemistry and biology. Due to layered type of assembling, 3D-printed surfaces possess rather different properties as compared to bulk surfaces made by other methods. Here we study fundamental interactions at the solid-liquid interface and evaluate polymeric materials towards advanced additive manufacturing. A simple and universal stability test was developed for 3D printed parts and applied to a variety of thermoplastics. Specific modes of resistance/destruction were described for different plastics and their compatibility to a representative scope of solvents (aqueous and organic) was evaluated. Classification and characterization of destruction modes for a wide range of conditions (including geometry and 3D printing parameters) were carried out. Key factors of tolerance to solvent media were investigated by electron microscopy. We show that the overall stability and the mode of destruction depend on chemical properties of the polymer and the nature of interactions at the solid-liquid interface. Importantly, stability also depends on the layered microstructure of the sample, which is defined by 3D printing parameters. Developed solvent compatibility charts for a wide range of polymeric materials (ABS, PLA, PLA-Cu, PETG, SBS, Ceramo, HIPS, Primalloy, Photoresin, Nylon, Nylon-C, POM, PE, PP) and solvents represent an important benchmark for practical applications.

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