Abstract

The types of biomedical devices that can be three-dimensional printed (3DP) is limited by the mechanical properties of the resulting materials. As a result, much research has focused on adding carbon nanotubes (CNT) to these photocurable polymers to make them stronger. The objective of this study was to expand the use of 3DP to prosthetics by testing the hypothesis that adding CNTs to a stereolithographic (SLA) photocurable resin will result in a cured polymer with increased impact and fatigue resistance. For impact testing, twenty-six total specimens: 13 with nanotubes and 13 without nanotubes, were printed on a Form2 SLA printer. Once all the specimens were printed, washed, and cured, the impact resistance was quantified using a pendulum impact tester in a notched Izod configuration. Similarly, twelve R. R. Moore fatigue specimens were printed, washed, and cured. The specimens with SWCNTs (0.312 ± 0.036 ft*lb/in) had a significantly lower impact resistance compared to the non-SWCNT specimens (0.364 ± 0.055 ft*lb/in), U = 34.0, p = 0.004. Adding SWCNTs also reduced the short cycle fatigue life (i.e. 103) from 3.1e5 to 8.8e3 psi and increased the endurance limit from 0.4 to 3.0e3 psi. If used for creating a foot prosthetic, the non-SWCNT polymer would last 2919 cycles while the SWCNT mixture would last <1 cycle. Therefore, SLA polymers do not yet have the impact and fatigue resistance capabilities to be used for prosthetic feet.

This content is only available via PDF.

Article PDF first page preview

Article PDF first page preview
You do not currently have access to this content.