When shape memory polymers meet 4D printing: challenges, advances, and perspectives in material modeling and simulation

Giulia Scalet
Department of Civil Engineering and Architecture, University of Pavia
Monday 17th October 2022
Aula Saleri - MOX - Dipartimento di Matematica
In recent years, 4D printing has emerged as an innovative manufacturing approach that combines 3D printing and stimuli-responsive materials to produce objects with complex geometries and capable of transforming themselves over time (the 4th dimension) after being manufactured, under the application of an external stimulus. Particularly, the shape memory effect in polymers is a stimuli-responsive feature that is attracting more and more attention in 4D printing, thanks to its potential in producing innovative structures with customized architectures and programmable behavior. The latter is a highly demanded feature in several fields since it allows the structure to adapt to the application needs or to dynamic environmental variables. To bring this technology closer to application, material modeling, numerical simulations, and optimization approaches are of particular importance. However, they represent a fundamental, but challenging and currently under-developed topic due to the tight connection between process, nonlinear material behavior, and the final design. This talk will present our recent modeling, computational, and experimental efforts to achieve programmability in light- and thermo-responsive shape memory polymers manufactured via 4D printing. A special focus will be given to the macroscopic phenomenological modeling of the SME in polymers, combined with finite element analysis and density-based topology optimization. Recent application examples and future perspectives will be discussed, with a special focus on soft actuators, metamaterials, pharmaceutical devices, and tissue engineering. Contatto: pasquale.ciarletta@polimi.it