UV laser direct writing of 2D/3D structures using photo-curable polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS)
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Additive manufacturing with UV curable polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) was achieved using UV laser direct writing. In these experiments, UV curable PDMS was locally polymerized to fabricate 1D and 2D single layer structures, as well as 3D multilayer structures. Line arrays with line widths between 18 and 47 µm were produced, and it was observed that good stability and repeatability of the photo-polymerization in the UV curable PDMS was possible. The 3D structures demonstrated the absorption depth of the UV curable PDMS, which was deeper than 3 mm, and enabled the fabrication of 3.1 mm tall structures with an aspect ratio of 2 in only a single layer. The 3D structures were sufficiently strong to show elastic properties. All surfaces were smooth and transparent. In addition, UV laser direct writing of UV curable PDMS realized patterning with uniform resolutions at each layer.
Authors would like to thank Shin-Etsu Silicones Europe B.V. for providing the PDMS sample and Katie Xu for supporting the technical discussion. This research was supported in a part of joint research projects by “Projektbezogener Personenaustausch mit Japan” (DAAD-JSPS) Joint Research Program (Project 57245147). The authors acknowledge financial support in the frame of the 3D-PolySPRINT Project (BMBF FKZ 13N13567).
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