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Assessment of Crystallinity Development during Fused Filament Fabrication through Fast Scanning Chip Calorimetry

1
Department of Chemical Engineering, KU Leuven, Celestijnenlaan 200F box 2424, 3000 Leuven, Belgium
2
Department of Chemistry, KU Leuven, Celestijnenlaan 200F box 2404, 3000 Leuven, Belgium
3
DSM Materials Science Center, Urmonderbaan 22, 6167 RD Geleen, The Netherlands
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Appl. Sci. 2019, 9(13), 2676; https://doi.org/10.3390/app9132676
Received: 31 May 2019 / Revised: 17 June 2019 / Accepted: 28 June 2019 / Published: 30 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from POLYMAR 2018)
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Abstract

Although semi-crystalline polymers are associated with considerably better mechanical properties and thermal stability compared to their amorphous counterparts, using them as feedstock for Fused Filament Fabrication still poses some major challenges. Hence, the development of printed part crystallinity during printing should be fully understood in order to control the developed weld strength, as well as part shrinkage and warpage. Infrared thermography was utilized to record the thermal history of deposited layers while printing a single-layer wall geometry, employing two PA 6/66 copolymers with distinct molecular weights as feedstock. Print settings were varied to establish which settings are essential to effectively monitor final part crystallinity. The resulting temperature profiles were simulated in a Fast Scanning Chip Calorimetry device that allows for the rapid heating and cooling rates experienced by the printed polymer. Both liquefier temperature and print speed were found to have very little influence on the total attained crystallinity. It became apparent that the build plate, set at a temperature above the polymer’s glass transition temperature, imposes a considerable annealing effect on the printed part. A reduced molecular weight was observed to enhance crystallinity even more strongly. The presented methodology proves that Fast Scanning Chip Calorimetry is an effective tool to assess the impact of both print parameters and feedstock characteristics on the crystallization behavior of semi-crystalline polymers over the course of printing. View Full-Text
Keywords: additive manufacturing; fused filament fabrication (FFF); 3D printing; polymer crystallization; infrared thermography; fast scanning chip calorimetry additive manufacturing; fused filament fabrication (FFF); 3D printing; polymer crystallization; infrared thermography; fast scanning chip calorimetry
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Vaes, D.; Coppens, M.; Goderis, B.; Zoetelief, W.; Van Puyvelde, P. Assessment of Crystallinity Development during Fused Filament Fabrication through Fast Scanning Chip Calorimetry. Appl. Sci. 2019, 9, 2676.

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