Journal of Materials Science

, Volume 54, Issue 12, pp 9235–9246 | Cite as

Shape memory effect of three-dimensional printed products based on polypropylene/nylon 6 alloy

  • Xiaodong Peng
  • Hui HeEmail author
  • Yunchao Jia
  • Hao Liu
  • Yi Geng
  • Bai Huang
  • Chao Luo


Based on the rapid development of three-dimensional (3D) printing, the fabrication of the 3D printed products which can change their shapes over time has been termed as four-dimensional (4D) printing. Since the functionality is generally limited by available materials, especially for fused deposition modeling (FDM, a trendy technology of 3D printing), it has aroused widespread requirements to develop a novel filament with excellent properties and functionalities. In this study, polypropylene/nylon 6 (PP/PA6) alloy was fabricated as a candidate for FDM and maleic anhydride-grafted poly(ethylene–octene) (POE-g-MAH) was used as a modifying agent as well as a compatibilizer. The results showed that the PP/PA6 alloy with 30 wt% of PA6 on the basis of the certain mass ratio of PP and POE-g-MAH (1.5:1) exhibited a high dimensional stability and appropriate mechanical properties in FDM. In addition, the possibility of PP/PA6 alloy as a shape memory polymer blend and the mechanism of shape memory effect (SME) were investigated. The 3D printed product with 30 wt% of PA6 fabricated by the infill orientation of 45°/− 45° and 100% infill density exhibited a great SME with the deformation temperature (Td) of 175 °C. This simple method for preparation of a novel filament with shape memory performance based on PP/PA6 alloy has a vast potential for the development of 4D printing technology.



This work was financially supported by the Science and Technology Project of Guangdong Province (2015B010122002), the Science and Technology Project of Guangzhou (201604016119) and the Science and Technology Project of Foshan (2016AG101581).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Supplementary material

10853_2019_3366_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (1.3 mb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 1332 kb)
10853_2019_3366_MOESM2_ESM.mp4 (3.4 mb)
Supplementary material 2 (MP4 3481 kb)


  1. 1.
    Wang X, Jiang M, Zhou Z, Gou J, Hui D (2017) 3D printing of polymer matrix composites: a review and prospective. Compos Part B Eng 110:442–458CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Mohamed OA, Masood SH, Bhowmik JL (2015) Optimization of fused deposition modeling process parameters: a review of current research and future prospects. Adv Manuf 3(1):42–53CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Boparai KS, Singh R, Singh H (2016) Development of rapid tooling using fused deposition modeling: a review. Rapid Prototyp J 22:281–299CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Chacón JM, Caminero MA, García-Plaza E, Núñez PJ (2017) Additive manufacturing of PLA structures using fused deposition modelling: effect of process parameters on mechanical properties and their optimal selection. Mater Des 124:143–157CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Spoerk M, Sapkota J, Weingrill G, Fischinger T, Arbeiter F, Holzer C (2017) Shrinkage and warpage optimization of expanded-perlite-filled polypropylene composites in extrusion-based additive manufacturing. Macromol Mater Eng. Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Yu Z, Li W, Li X, Zhou X, Fan Y (2017) Investigation on the preparation and properties of acetylated wood flour polyolefin based wood plastic composite FDM filaments. Accessed 12 Oct 2017
  7. 7.
    Carneiro OS, Silva AF, Gomes R (2015) Fused deposition modeling with polypropylene. Mater Des 83:768–776CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Chen Y, Zhang Y, Zhang X, Zhou W (2014) Preparation of a filament based on polypropylene composites for 3D printing, CN 103739954 AGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Jia Y, He H, Peng X, Meng S, Chen J, Geng Y (2017) Preparation of a new filament based on polyamide-6 for three-dimensional printing. Polym Eng Sci. Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Momeni F, Hassani SMM, Liu X, Ni J (2017) A review of 4D printing. Mater Des 122:42–79CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Wu J, Huang L, Zhao Q, Xie T (2017) 4D Printing: history and recent progress. Chin J Polym Sci 36(5):563–575CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Yang Y, Chen Y, Wei Y, Li Y (2015) 3D printing of shape memory polymer for functional part fabrication. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 84(9–12):2079–2095Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Senatov FS, Niaza KV, Zadorozhnyy MY, Maksimkin AV, Kaloshkin SD, Estrin YZ (2016) Mechanical properties and shape memory effect of 3D-printed PLA-based porous scaffolds. J Mech Behav Biomed 57:139–148CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Chen S, Zhang Q, Feng J (2017) 3D printing of tunable shape memory polymer blends. J Mater Chem C 5(33):8361–8365CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Zarek M, Layani M, Cooperstein I, Sachyani E, Cohn D, Magdassi S (2016) 3D printing of shape memory polymers for flexible electronic devices. Adv Mater 28(22):4449–4454CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Yang H, Leow WR, Wang T, Wang J, Yu J, He K, Qi D, Wan C, Chen X (2017) 3D printed photoresponsive devices based on shape memory composites. Adv Mater. Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Lin Q, Li L, Tang M, Hou X, Ke C (2018) Rapid macroscale shape morphing of 3D-printed polyrotaxane monoliths amplified from pH-controlled nanoscale ring motions. J Mater Chem C. Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Caputo MP, Berkowitz AE, Armstrong A, Müllner P, Solomon CV (2018) 4D printing of net shape parts made from Ni–Mn–Ga magnetic shape-memory alloys. Addit Manuf 21:579–588CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Pandini S, Baldi F, Paderni K, Messori M, Toselli M, Pilati F, Gianoncelli A, Brisotto M, Bontempi E, Riccò T (2013) One-way and two-way shape memory behaviour of semi-crystalline networks based on sol–gel cross-linked poly(ε-caprolactone). Polymer 54(16):4253–4265CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Raidt T, Schmidt M, Tiller JC, Katzenberg F (2018) Crosslinking of semiaromatic polyesters toward high-temperature shape memory polymers with full recovery. Macromol Rapid Commun. Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Ge Q, Qi HJ, Dunn ML (2013) Active materials by four-dimension printing. Appl Phys Lett. Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Wang Q (2016) 4D printing and its military application prospects. Natl Def Sci Technol 37(04):36–39Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Su Y, Wang X, Wu B, Wang F, Wang J, Xing B (2018) Application potential of 4D printing technology in development of aircraft. J Aeron Mater 38(02):59–69Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Bodaghi M, Damanpack AR, Liao WH (2016) Self-expanding/shrinking structures by 4D printing. Smart Mater Struct. Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Kim H, Akundi A, Tseng B (2018) 4D printing of pressure sensor devices for engineering education. In: ASEE conference & exposition. Accessed 26 Aug 2018
  26. 26.
    Liu C, Qin H, Mather PT (2007) Review of progress in shape-memory polymers. J Mater Chem. Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Ratna D, Karger-Kocsis J (2007) Recent advances in shape memory polymers and composites: a review. J Mater Sci 43(1):254–269. CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Wu Y, Zhang H, Shentu B, Weng Z (2017) In situ formation of the core-shell particles and their function in toughening PA6/SEBS-g-MA/PP blends. Ind Eng Chem Res 56(41):11657–11663CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Shelesh-Nezhad K, Orang H, Motallebi M (2012) Crystallization, shrinkage and mechanical characteristics of polypropylene/CaCO3 nanocomposites. J Thermoplast Compos Mater 26(4):544–554CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Bourbigot S, Garnier L, Revel B, Duquesne S (2013) Characterization of the morphology of iPP/sPP blends with various compositions. Express Polym Lett 7(3):224–237CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Zhao J, Chen M, Wang X, Zhao X, Wang Z, Dang ZM, Ma L, Hu GH, Chen F (2013) Triple shape memory effects of cross-linked polyethylene/polypropylene blends with cocontinuous architecture. ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 5(12):5550–5556CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Zhang J (2002) Studies on the application of inorganic nanoparticles on high performational modification of plastics. Ph.D. Dissertation, Nanjing University of Science and TechnologyGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Jiang Z (2007) Study on the compatibility of PA6/PP Blend. MS Dissertation, Sichuan UniversityGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Zhao Z, Peng F, Cavicchi KA, Cakmak M, Weiss RA, Vogt BD (2017) Three-dimensional printed shape memory objects based on an olefin ionomer of zinc-neutralized poly (ethylene-co-methacrylic acid). ACS Appl Mater Interfaces 9(32):27239–27249CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Zhao Q, Zou W, Luo Y, Xie T (2016) Shape memory polymer network with thermally distinct elasticity and plasticity. Sci Adv. Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    Li F, Chen Y, Zhu W, Xu M (1998) Shape memory effect of polyethylene/nylon 6 graft copolymers. Polymer 39:6929–6934CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Li S-C, Tao L (2010) Melt Rheological and thermoresponsive shape memory properties of HDPE/PA6/POE-g-MAH blends. Polym Plast Technol Eng 49(2):218–222CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Li S-C, Lu L-N, Zeng W (2009) Thermostimulative shape-memory effect of reactive compatibilized high-density polyethylene/poly(ethylene terephthalate) blends by an ethylene-butyl acrylate-glycidyl methacrylate terpolymer. J Appl Polym Sci 112(6):3341–3346CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. 39.
    Zhang Q, Song S, Feng J, Wu P (2012) A new strategy to prepare polymer composites with versatile shape memory properties. J Mater Chem. Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Chung T, Romo-Uribe A, Mather PT (2008) Two-way reversible shape memory in a semicrystalline network. Macromolecules 41:184–192CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Materials Science and EngineeringSouth China University of TechnologyGuangzhouChina

Personalised recommendations