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Deformation behavior of 3D printed auxetic structures of thermoplastic polymers: PLA, PBAT, and blends
Auxetic structures have a negative Poisson's ratio and therefore expand transversely to the direction of loading instead of tapering. This unique behavior is not caused by the materials used, but by the structure, and thus offers completely new functionalities and design possibilities. As a rule, auxetic structures have a very complex geometry, which makes cost-effective production possible only by means of additive manufacturing processes. Due to the high design freedom of the strand deposition method, it makes sense to manufacture auxetic structures using this process. Therefore, in this project, polylactide acid (PLA), polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT), and blends of the two polymers were produced and characterized. Filaments of the two polymers and a blend were extruded, processed into auxetic structures by strand deposition process (SDP), and investigated for their properties, primarily their Poisson's ratio. The Poisson's ratio was determined and the influence of the material on it was identified. A specific number of 5 × 5 unit cells has been found to be ideal for investigation. Dual printed specimens showed a similar auxetic behavior as the specimens made of pure PBAT. Likewise, multiple loading and unloading of the structure is possible. Furthermore, in-situ computed tomography revealed the detailed characterization of the initial state, including the warpage of the structures, damage, and traced auxetic behavior in detail.