Chapter 12 - Polymerization in nature yields clues to innovation in additive manufacturing
(From: Biomimicry for Materials, Design and Habitats: Innovations and Applications)
This chapter details an account of an interdisciplinary investigation of safer stereolithography resins based on chemical reaction processes found in intertidal organisms like the oyster and the mussel. Many current resin formulations contain chemicals of concern and the investigators reviewed process, material, and system alternatives to avoid these chemicals. Three phases of a six-year project are described, during which several bio-inspired polymerization techniques were explored and adapted for innovative applications in the additive manufacturing sector. These included biomineralization, metal-catechol formation, and a combination of ultraviolet light and pH change activation and control of polymerization.
Keywords: Acrylates; additive manufacturing; bio-inspired composites; catechols; chitosan; mussel; oyster; polymerization; stereolithography; UV activation