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Article

Rheology-Assisted Microstructure Control for Printing Magnetic Composites—Material and Process Development

1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Alberta, 9211-116 St., NW Edmonton, AB T6G 1H9, Canada
2
Department of Chemistry, University of Calgary, 2500 University Dr. NW, Calgary, AB T2N 1N4, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Polymers 2020, 12(9), 2143; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12092143
Received: 11 August 2020 / Revised: 16 September 2020 / Accepted: 18 September 2020 / Published: 20 September 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Process–Structure–Properties in Polymer Additive Manufacturing)
Magnetic composites play a significant role in various electrical and electronic devices. Properties of such magnetic composites depend on the particle microstructural distribution within the polymer matrix. In this study, a methodology to manufacture magnetic composites with isotropic and anisotropic particle distribution was introduced using engineered material formulations and manufacturing methods. An in-house developed material jetting 3D printer with particle alignment capability was utilized to dispense a UV curable resin formulation to the desired computer aided design (CAD) geometry. Formulations engineered using additives enabled controlling the rheological properties and the microstructure at different manufacturing process stages. Incorporating rheological additives rendered the formulation with thixotropic properties suitable for material jetting processes. Particle alignment was accomplished using a magnetic field generated using a pair of permanent magnets. Microstructure control in printed composites was observed to depend on both the developed material formulations and the manufacturing process. The rheological behavior of filler-modified polymers was characterized using rheometry, and the formulation properties were derived using mathematical models. Experimental observations were correlated with the observed mechanical behavior changes in the polymers. It was additionally observed that higher additive content controlled particle aggregation but reduced the degree of particle alignment in polymers. Directionality analysis of optical micrographs was utilized as a tool to quantify the degree of filler orientation in printed composites. Characterization of in-plane and out-of-plane magnetic properties using a superconducting quantum interference device (SQUID) magnetometer exhibited enhanced magnetic characteristics along the direction of field structuring. Results expressed in this fundamental research serve as building blocks to construct magnetic composites through material jetting-based additive manufacturing processes. View Full-Text
Keywords: additive manufacturing; magnetic composites; ferrite composites; field structuring; microstructure control; rheological modifications additive manufacturing; magnetic composites; ferrite composites; field structuring; microstructure control; rheological modifications
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MDPI and ACS Style

Nagarajan, B.; Schoen, M.A.W.; Trudel, S.; Qureshi, A.J.; Mertiny, P. Rheology-Assisted Microstructure Control for Printing Magnetic Composites—Material and Process Development. Polymers 2020, 12, 2143. https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12092143

AMA Style

Nagarajan B, Schoen MAW, Trudel S, Qureshi AJ, Mertiny P. Rheology-Assisted Microstructure Control for Printing Magnetic Composites—Material and Process Development. Polymers. 2020; 12(9):2143. https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12092143

Chicago/Turabian Style

Nagarajan, Balakrishnan, Martin A.W. Schoen, Simon Trudel, Ahmed J. Qureshi, and Pierre Mertiny. 2020. "Rheology-Assisted Microstructure Control for Printing Magnetic Composites—Material and Process Development" Polymers 12, no. 9: 2143. https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12092143

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