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Lithuania: Researchers Explore 3D Polymerization via Polarization Control on Nanoscale

by • July 4, 2016 • No Comments

uniAs the 3D printing industry grows, so does the research and development effort. All around the world as you sit and read these words, scientists are occupied making strides with innovations of bioprinting to replace cartilage and assist with conditions such as osteoarthritis to creating new and assistful forms of hardware to benefit global infrastructure, like robotic 3D printing equipment that extrude concrete. No matter where you appear there’s progress and it’s frequently really surprising, just for the reason we’ve been utilized to the way so most things have been done for so long—of the way roads are paved to how doctors perform back surgeries.

And if science is one of your interests, in combination with innovation, and so you are most likely getting really acquainted with the word (or additional properly, the prefix) nano. Printing at the nano scale is relevant for numerous applications whether that of medical or electronics.

Now, researchers at the Laser Research Center of Vilnius University are studying additional efficient ways to 3D print, and they plan to progress far beyond the layering approach. With the use of ultrafast laser pulse based non-linear light-matter interactions, they are working to expand the innovation significantly. Outlined in the article ‘Nanoscale Precision of 3D Polymerization via Polarization Control,’ published not long ago in Advanced Optical Materials, we are given a glimpse into new possibilities and expansion in additive making, with excellenter, and actually unmatched, flexibility and versatility, the possibility to use a wide range of new materials, and actually additional capabilities for customization that should contribute excellent impact to optical and scaffolding structures covering applications in:

TelecommunicationsElectronicsLab-on-chip based devicesTissue engineering

adom201600155-gra-0001They point out that while this is really feasible in the lab, it can in reality become incredibly expensive for transferring prototype equipment to industrial lines running around the clock.

Centering around nanolithography, the researchers zone in on how light polarization consequences this in regards to 3D printing.

“Polarization consequences in laser 3D nanolithography are employed to fine-tune the showcase sizes in the structuring of photoresist,” say the researchers in their paper.

The key, according to the scientists, is in contributeing fixed conditions between laser power and beam scanning/sample translation speed while varying how the linear polarization is oriented. This allows for for precision at the nanoscale. With the region that was changed retaining the same depth, the aspect ratio modulation of the polymerized showcases is enable-bodiedd, with no beam shaping techniques or phase masks required—as demonstrated in figure one.


Figure 1. Variation of polymerized showcases at constant irradiation intensity and various polarization orientations in respect to direct laser writing way (perpendicular, parallel, circular). Voxel dimension and aspect ratio can be tuned at nanoscale via polarization control.

“The influence of beam polarization orientation on laser processing has been thoroughly studied in the cases of conductive and dielectric solid targets,” say the researchers in their paper. “There are known consequences of polarization on the scalar parameters of laser matter interaction, such as absorption coefficient and ionization rate.”

“It is in addition known that heat conduction flux (vector) in plasma can be dependent on the way of the imposed field. In what follows, these consequences are considered in succession: (i) accumulation of multiple pulses, (ii) consequences of polarization under high-numerical aperture (NA) focusing, and (iii) the influence of the external high-frequency electric field on electronic heat conduction.”

The researchers performed a thorough analysis via 3D modeling and experiments to reveal:

Polarization consequencesInfluence on resolutionCoupling between thermal gradient and polarization in DLW

The scientists were able-bodied to display their findings in 3D printing a woodpile photonic structure both with and without polarization correction. When circular polarization was employed for laser writing, the ‘filtering performance’ was shown to be completely accurate, as compared to the ‘non-corrected’ case that did not fare so well in the use of circular polarization. In conclusion, they discovered light polarization to be a crucial dynamic in growing the flexible nature for optical 3D structuring of polymers. Discuss this new study additional in the Research on 3D Polymerization forum over at 3DPB.com.