Stansbury JW, Idacavage MJ.
3D printing with polymers: Challenges among expanding options and opportunities.
Dental Materials. 2016;32(1):54-64.
Additive manufacturing, which is more colloquially referred to as 3D printing, is quickly approaching mainstream adoption as a highly flexible processing technique that can be applied to plastic, metal, ceramic, concrete and other building materials. However, taking advantage of the tremendous versatility associated with in situ photopolymerization as well as the ability to select from a variety of preformed processible polymers, 3D printing predominantly targets the production of polymeric parts and models. The goal of this review is to connect the various additive manufacturing techniques with the monomeric and polymeric materials they use while highlighting emerging material-based developments.
Modern additive manufacturing technology was introduced approximately three decades ago but this review compiles recent peer-reviewed literature reports to demonstrate the evolution underway with respect to the various building techniques that differ significantly in approach as well as the new variations in polymer-based materials being employed.
Recent growth of 3D printing has been dramatic and the ability of the various platform technologies to expand from rapid production prototypic models to the greater volume of readily customizable production of working parts is critical for continued high growth rates. This transition to working part production is highly dependent on adapting materials that deliver not only the requisite design accuracy but also the physical and mechanical properties necessary for the application.
With the weighty distinction of being called the next industrial revolution, 3D printing technologies is already altering many industrial and academic operations including changing models for future healthcare delivery in medicine and dentistry.