The electric poling-assisted additive manufacturing (EPAM) method developed by Purdue Polytechnic Institute researchers combines three-dimensional (3D) printing and electric poling into a single process.
The technique aligns the dipoles in polyvinylidene difluoride (PVdf) filament during printing, which can better indicate the stress being applied and confer strong sensitivity and customized shapes onto 3D-printed components.
"During the EPAM process, stretching the molten PVdf rod rearranges the amorphous strands in the film plane, and the applied electric field aligns dipoles toward the same direction," explained Purdue's Robert Nawrocki. "The EPAM process can print free-form PVdf structures and induce the formation of ß-phase, which is primarily responsible for the piezoelectric response."
From Purdue University
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