Resins for 3D microprinting from Microlight3D

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Credit: Microlight3D 

Microlight3D, a speciality manufacturer of high-resolution micro-scale 2D & 3D printing systems for industrial and scientific applications, has announced the launch of eight new resins with diverse properties for mechanical meta-materials and life sciences applications. The range of flexible, rigid and biocompatible resins creates opportunities for developers to explore 3D microprinting using different materials and reproduce minuscule objects, 100x smaller than a strand of hair, in complex designs.

Microlight3D developed the eight resins, on top of the two it already markets, for use with its microFAB-3D, an ultra-high-resolution 3D-printing system, based on two-photon polymerisation. This direct laser writing technology is used to create a solid 3D-printed structure from photoactivable materials.

The resins for microFAB-3D are easily used and removed. It takes a single drop onto a substrate (glass coverslip) to run a micron-sized 3Dprint job, and a 10-minute solvent bath to remove the unused resin. To use another material simply requires putting a drop of that resin onto a different glass coverslip to create a new project. Or, using the previously rinsed coverslip, create a multi-material structure, which is possible due the alignment feature in Microlight3D’s machine software.

Mechanical meta-materials

Microlight3D offers two rigid resins: Rigid-A and Rigid-E, as well as a flexible resin called Flex-A for the mechanical metamaterials sector. This includes 4D printing and micromechanics applications, such as micro-grippers, screws and micro-architectured materials to obtain unique combinations of material properties.

Mechanical metamaterials researchers can also opt for OrmoRed, a resin used with an infrared laser. This means that through microFAB-3D, which has the unique ability to combine two lasers with different wavelengths, researchers can use different materials within the same system; enhancing the OrmoRed resin with metallic or magnetic nanoparticles to create, for example, innovative micro-robots.

Cell culture and medical devices

Microlight3D developed OrmoBio and Green-A-Bio as biocompatible resins, while Green-Gel and UV-Gel are two biocompatible and ductile hydrogels. Green-Gel and UV-Gel enable ultra-high-resolution printing and have a rigidity that can be tailored according to users’ needs. This ability to modulate the rigidity of hydrogels is very important for researchers in cell culture, as cell interaction changes depending on the rigidity of the material surrounding them.