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Reference Number MR/V021117/1
Title Smart formulations for manufacturing of functional three-dimensional hierarchical structures
Status Started
Energy Categories NOT ENERGY RELATED 50%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 100%
Science and Technology Fields PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Chemistry) 35%;
PHYSICAL SCIENCES AND MATHEMATICS (Metallurgy and Materials) 35%;
ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Chemical Engineering) 30%;
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr E G T (Esther ) Garcia-Tunon
No email address given
Mech, Materials & Aerospace Engineerin
University of Liverpool
Award Type Fellowship
Funding Source UKRI
Start Date 30 September 2021
End Date 29 September 2025
Duration 48 months
Total Grant Value £1,222,187
Total Project Value £1,222,187
Industrial Sectors
Region North West
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr E G T (Esther ) Garcia-Tunon , Mech, Materials & Aerospace Engineerin, University of Liverpool (100.000%)
Web Site
Objectives Objectives not supplied
Abstract This research program bridges the gap between emerging functional materials and our ability to process these materials using advanced techniques such as additive manufacturing and directed assembly of macroscopic structures. Such bridging is of particular interest to those working in energy focused research as the UK has world-leading activity in materials discovery, but few of these new materials have been integrated into functional structures and devices. In the past few years, we have witnessed an enormous growth in additive manufacturing (AM) and other advanced processing techniques. Ink based 3D printing can pattern a range of materials to create printed batteries, supercapacitors, components of human organs and even shape morphing or 4D printed structures. Due to its relative simplicity, extrusion-based 3D printing (also known as Direct Ink Writing, DIW or Robocasting) is the most viable AM technique for introducing advanced functional materials into complex designs, and creating high resolution multi-material 3D structures combining dissimilar materials. The development of this technique is promising, however there remain fundamental scientific and technological challenges that need to be addressed from a multi and interdisciplinary perspective. We need to develop the ability to design and understand the bulk and local behaviour of yield stress fluids for DIW (those with solid-like behaviour at stresses below the yield point, beyond which they start to flow); and to advance the technology to create truly multi-material structures (those that combine different classes of materials). I will apply a multi and interdisciplinary approach to fundamental research on bespoke additives (responsive surfactants) to design complex (yield stress) fluids. I will develop new bulk and micro rheology methodologies to understand their behaviour and micro-structure to deliver a library of printable formulations to create designs with enhanced performance. This fundamental research will pave the way for the direct application of yield stress fluids in DIW to create complex multi-material structures. This research will be driven by, and evolve further, key applications in both healthcare and energy. For example, where architecture control across multiple scale lengths and interfaces is crucial, this research will enable combinatorial materials science, such as conjugated polymer photocatalysts (a new class of materials that has rapidly become highly researched worldwide) combined with semiconductors in an artificial photocatalytic system (Z-scheme). In healthcare, my research will advance 3D bioprinting through material development and standardisation, whilst at the same time creating complex degradable and non-degradable structures for specific applications within the field. For example, developing strategies for 3D printing polymer constructs with tuned properties to facilitate a range of material induced tissue regeneration. I will establish a newComplex Fluids group working at the boundaries between Materials Science, Materials Chemistry and Chemical Engineering. I will develop my leadership skills through a career development plan with a strong focus on Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (EDI), and I will gradually transition to postdoctoral research supervision as the group grows. My mentors Professors Andy Cooper (AIC) and Steve Rannard (SR) will provide guidance on management of large research groups and establishing long-term relationships with Industry. I will forge new collaborations and partnerships locally (Dr Jude Curran, JC; and the Fluids Engineering Research Group Prof Robert J Poole, RJP and Dr David JC Dennis, DJCD); nationally (Dr Andy Gleadall, AG, Loughborough); and internationally (with collaborator Dr Patrick Spicer, PS, Sydney).
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 28/09/22