Chemists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have developed a new additive manufacturing technique that allows the addition of new polymers to a 3D-printed object, which can change the chemical composition and mechanical properties of the original polymer. Using ultraviolet light, the researchers stimulated the polymers to break in specific places so that new chains could be created with monomers introduced from a solution.
“The advantage there is you can turn the light on and the chains grow, and you turn the light off and they stop,” said Jeremiah Johnson, associate professor of chemistry, according to the article. “In principle, you can repeat that indefinitely and they can continue growing and growing.”
The research was published by Mao Chen, former MIT postdoc, and Yuwei Gu, a graduate student, in the Jan. 13 issue of ACS Central Science.
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