The new process to achieve high resolution, 3D printing, the complicated structure of graphene
Graphene is a very high strength material having high thermal conductivity and electrical conductivity. Graphene technical attention in the field of cell manufacturing, aerospace, separation, thermal management, sensors and the like. But the manufacture of complex structures with graphene material has been difficult to achieve, if the problem is not resolved, will affect the graphene material of potential applications. To overcome this limitation, Virginia Tech University (Viginia Tech) College of Engineering and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) researchers two years has been focused on the study of graphene aerogels using 3D printing, they developed a new process of graphene 3D printing, manufacture of complex three-dimensional structure of the graphene by the projected micro-stereolithography 3D printing. Dimensional graphene structure manufactured by this process, the resolution of an order of magnitude higher than previous methods, and can retain the mechanical properties of two-dimensional graphene material. High-resolution three-dimensional structure of the complex graphene Graphene is a single layer of carbon atoms of the hexagonal lattice organizations, when the graphene sheets are stacked neatly on top of each other and form a three-dimensional shape, it becomes become graphite. Since the graphite material is a simple stacking of graphene together, the mechanical properties of this material is very poor. However, if the graphene sheet separated holes filled with air, can maintain the properties of the three-dimensional structure of graphene, such a porous structure called graphene graphene airgel. Xiaoyu Zheng Advanced Manufacturing and Materials Laboratory ultra-Virginia Tech, said School of Engineering and LLNL researchers to design three-dimensional topological structure of graphene sheets of interconnected, this new way of designing and manufacturing of freedom additive manufacturing degree, optimization graphene airgel strength, electrical conductivity, mass transport, strength and weight density. Previously, researchers based material extrusion process technology for producing a three-dimensional 3D printing graphene, but this technique is limited resolution, which limits the freedom of molding material graphene. The new method can print these 3D monolayer graphene materials designed in any desired three-dimensional structure, and having a high resolution. In order to create these complex structures, researchers used graphene oxide precursor graphene sheet is crosslinked to form a porous hydrogel. Then sonicated graphene oxide hydrogels, and add photosensitive acrylate polymer. The researchers used a micro perspective projection photocurable printing technology 3DSurgery needed to create a solid 3D structure of graphene, the graphene oxide is captured in the long and acrylate having a rigid polymer chain. After printing, the researchers 3D structure is placed in a furnace to burn the polymer, so that objects together, leaving pure graphene lightweight airgel. Thesis research results \”Additive manufacturing of complex micro-architected graphene aerogels\” published in Materials Horizons magazine. Researchers said the study created graphene structure than the conventional 3D high resolution print resolution graphene one order of magnitude, other processes can print to 100 microns, but the technology can be as low as 10 microns graphene resolution 3D printing material, which is close to the actual size of the graphene sheet. This technology is still three-dimensional graphene structure capable of retaining the two-dimensional monolayer graphene mechanical properties.