519. Itaconic acid-based 3D printed nanocomposites: an in-depth study on the effect of nanoinclusions on the physicochemical properties and the printability of formulations based on polyester itaconates

Lazaros Papadopoulos, Lorenzo Pezzana, Natalia Malitowski, Nikolaos Kladovasilakis, Dimitrios Tzetzis, Marco Sangermano, Dimitrios Bikiaris, Tobias Robert, Giant, (2024), DOI: 10.1016/j.giant.2024.100275

The demand for novel bio-based materials in UV-curing additive manufacturing has surged due to increasing environmental concerns and a growing emphasis on sustainable practices in the manufacturing industry. However, at the moment, their thermomechanical performance is not equal to that of their fossil-based counterparts and this impedes the acceptance of these materials within the industrial community. Therefore, in this study, a series of nanocomposite polyesters based on itaconic acid was synthesized for the first time with in-situ polymerization, in an attempt to leverage the unique properties of nanofillers and improve the overall performance of the material. A variety of reinforcing agents were utilized, namely cellulose nanocrystals (CNC), montmorillonite (MMT), graphene nanoplatelets (GNP) and titanium dioxide (TiO2), to understand the effect of each filler on the physicochemical properties of the polyester. Formulations of these polyesters were then prepared and processed on a digital light processing (DLP) 3D printer to prepare test specimens. Extensive thermomechanical characterization showed that the interference of the fillers with the UV curing process was the main parameter determining the mechanical performance of the 3D printed materials.