Adaptive materials : utilising additive manufactured scaffolds to control self-organising material aggregation

Blaney, Adam and Alexander, Jason Mark and Dunn, Nicholas Simon and Richards, Daniel Courtney and Rennie, Allan Edward Watson and Anwar, Jamshed (2016) Adaptive materials : utilising additive manufactured scaffolds to control self-organising material aggregation. International Journal of Rapid Manufacturing. ISSN 1757-8817 (In Press)

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Additive manufacturing technologies offer exciting opportunities to re- think the process of designing and fabricating physical structures. This paper outlines initial work that seeks to extend existing AM capabilities, creating adaptive structures that can tune their physical properties by exploiting processes of self-assembly and material aggregation. The paper details an investigation of self-organising / self-assembling structures that can respond to different conditions by adapting their physical properties over time, suggesting how this opens up new possibilities for various design and engineering applications (including but not limited to medical implants, prosthetics, product design, aerospace and next-generation architectural designs). The process uses electrolysis of seawater to demonstrate a proof-of-concept of tuneable material structures, via crystal growth. Results gained so far demonstrate an aggregation-based multi-material system that is sensitive to changing environmental conditions. Material properties of grown structures have been analysed and illustrate that different materials can be created from an abundant base material (natural seawater) by manipulating environmental conditions (i.e. electrical current). It is found that turbulence is a useful property within these kinds of systems and that the physical properties of scaffold structures have significant impact in controlling material properties and resolution.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
International Journal of Rapid Manufacturing
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Self-Assembly ; Adaptive Materials ; Additive Manufacturing
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
08 Nov 2016 14:24
In Press
Last Modified:
11 Jun 2019 03:58