A team at the Russian Academy of Sciences has found that printing in high-resolution 3D removes some of the problems associated with technology.
3D printing when using two-photon lithography can print objects on a molecular scale. This is very valuable to the medical field in areas of;
1. Delivery of medicine,
2. Regeneration of tissue,
3. Chemical Synthesis and,
4. Material synthesis.
It can also help in replacing parts of the body’s organs that have been damaged. It can do this with the use of different polymer materials. Researchers are hoping that with this new technology they will be able to create objects with the correct sizes and properties that it can be placed inside living tissue to repair damaged tissue.
Lasers that are needed to cure the resin operate at such high intensities that it can damage the materials. Plus the lasers are expensive. In two-photon lithography, the lasers work at the near-infrared phase of light. The 3D printing operates at a lower intensity that it removes some of the shortcomings of the faster lasers.
Two-photon lithography is also slow with a resolution that is poor. It involves the selective curing of a resin tank by a high-intensity laser. This creates particular structures.
The Russian researcher’s use of nano-particles is created from;
3. Ytterbium and,
These are also known as UCNPs. These particles when exposed to light create an energy that emits a further UV ray. The energy is used to polymerize the surrounding particles.
What makes this process a success is in its high-resolution objects which are made with a low-intensity non-infrared light source. This photopolymerization gives the 3D printer the potential to print inside biological tissues.
This research makes something that seemed impossible a great possibility in the bio-printing, electronic and other fields that need a high-quality resolution.
The conclusion that the Russian team has is that this method of 3D printing has an unprecedented high conversion in the UV range. It is successful in non-infrared polymerization for use in micrometer scaled objects.