Towards more homogeneous character in 3D printed photopolymers by the addition of nanofillers

Mariola Robakowska, Ian Gibson, Remko Akkerman, Frederik R. Wurm, Hubert Gojzewski*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
10 Downloads (Pure)


The performance of 3D printed materials differs from that of fully cured polymer materials because of the presence of interfacial areas between consecutively joined layers. These interfaces result in an inhomogeneous character of the printed objects and is frequently reported as their main cause of failures. We noted that the presence of nanosilica particles strengthens the 3D printed layers of the polymer matrix by inducing its additional crosslinking. A model resin composed of poly (ethylene glycol) diacrylate (PEGDA) and nanosilica (Aerosil R972) is used for vat photopolymer 3D printing. Evolution of the interface properties at different nanosilica loadings is tracked by mapping its surface stiffness (Young's modulus mapping) using quantitative Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM). Our research demonstrates that incorporating 6% w/v nanosilica in the polyPEGDA matrix unifies its mechanical properties within the layer, leading to a substantial reduction of microscopic inhomogeneity in the final 3D printed materials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108243
JournalPolymer testing
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • 3D printing
  • AFM stiffness
  • Layer interface
  • Photopolymer nanocomposite
  • UT-Hybrid-D


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