Advancements in 3D printer technology are one of the more interesting technological innovations to come out as of late.Like all new technological advancements 3D printing is changing and evolving as needs and advantages of the technology become more apparent. i3DP (initiator integrated 3D printing) is one such breakthrough currently in development.
A flaw in the current state of its technology is that it requires a lot of different equipment. Currently, to create something with a 3D printer can require different layers depending on the type of printer. This also results in a need for different ink types, which also require specialized 3D printers. While an interesting advancement, it isn’t exactly the most efficient one. However, in time, advancements allow for a less complex and efficient process. Initiator integrated 3D printing removes a lot of these technological limitations.
An initiator integrated 3D printing only requires one printer that has several easy-to-modify surfaces and only needs one type of highly specialized ink. This specialized ink isn’t an all in one type. It is more core-shaped and can be adjusted or changed for different features. Because the ink is specialized, they can be set to different functions. For example, you want the item you’re printing to be insulated from electrical feedback. All you need to do is set the properties to the right settings and that’s all you have to do, as well as find printing accessories through Ink Technologies.
Here’s where it gets complex. Everything made by a 3D printer is made from a resin. The resin produced by the i3DP method allows for the growth of a polymer called a polymer brush. With these chemicals, chains are introduced to cause chemical bonds, making the process easier and more efficient.
A useful feature this improved method of 3D-printing is that the outcomes are resistant to bacterial growth, a breakthrough in its field. It also means that 3D-printed items, like leg or arm prosthetics, can easily be created and have the proper parts attached without any kind of bacterial threat. Another useful feature is if an external part is damaged, it can be replaced easily. All that is needed is that the 3D printed core section retains intact and able to bond. This makes for an easier repair.
While it sounds very complex and scientific to many, it’s actually very practical sense. The true breakthrough is production. Old methods of 3D printing are slow and cumbersome. They tend to only use one type of ink, which means that they can only create one type of item. Making something in this manner was like working on the world’s oldest assembly line. In addition, progress would be slower as you would have to make each part individually.
These advances not only created a useful and versatile polymer that can be shaped into anything, but it also created a far faster work process. With everything simplified to one printer with one kind of ink, the field of 3D-printing has gone through a major breakthrough. With this ease of production, it can make printing 3D objects and items more common and practical.
To show more of the interesting properties of the i3DP method, a scientist created several test items with very unique properties. One was a ball, the other was a cube. The cube was made to resist and reflect water while the ball was made to contain and take in water. The ball was made of a mesh-like material and was given a mesh-like look. However, while it didn’t look like it could absorb and contain water; it did during its testing. This was due to the unique bonding properties of the polymers from the printing.
The ability to create such unique materials with such unique properties could result in many great things down the line. Items and objects that haven’t even been thought of yet It is only a matter of time before people test this method and bring it to its limits.