Interfacial Mechanics of Direct Write Additive Manufacturing of Particle Suspensions

Interdisciplinary Areas: Future Manufacturing

Project Description

Additive manufacturing (AM) of particle-containing polymeric materials is an emerging technology with a number of potential applications ranging from food science to self-healing materials development. Utilizing a novel direct write AM process invented at Purdue, this project will explore the mechanical properties of the numerous interfaces that play a critical role in the industrialization of this promising future manufacturing strategy. Micromechanical experiments coupling miniature mechanical deformation with advanced optical microscopy methods will enable direct visualization of stress fields as they develop within the polymer matrix of particle-filled AM components. Further, experimental characterization and finite element simulations will be employed to understand the role of the interfacial toughness of the particle/matrix, AM weld, and AM part/print surface on the overall print quality and mechanical properties. The postdoctoral researcher will perform experiments and simulations. Additionally, they will supervise graduate student researchers in lab and work closely with the PIs to develop their technical communication skills and expand their knowledge base.

Start Date

February 2022

Postdoctoral Qualifications

- Ph.D. in engineering (i.e. mechanical, materials, civil, aerospace, chemical), physics, or related discipline
- US citizenship
- The project will involve instrument construction, laboratory experiments, and modeling/simulations. Candidates with experience in collaborative work at the experimental-theory interface are preferred.
- Experience with MATLAB, LabView, and/or FEA software (i.e. Abaqus, Ansys, etc.) is preferred but not required.


Jeffrey Rhoads,, School of Mechanical Engineering,
Chelsea Davis,, School of Materials Engineering,


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2. J.E. Seppala, S.H. Han, K.E. Hillgartner, C.S. Davis, K.B. Migler, "Weld formation during material extrusion additive manufacturing." Soft Matter, (4) 2017, DOI: 10.1039/C7SM00950J.
3. C.S. Davis, K.E. Hillgartner, S.H. Han, J.E. Seppala, “Mechanical strength of welding zones produced by polymer extrusion additive manufacturing.” Additive Manufacturing, (6) 2017, 162. DOI: 10.1016/j.addma.2017.06.006.
4. T.J. Fleck, A.K. Murray, I.E. Gunduz, S.F. Son, G. T-C. Chiu, J.F. Rhoads, "Additive manufacturing of multifunctional reactive materials", Additive Manufacturing, (17) 2017, 176. DOI: 10.1016/j.addma.2017.08.008.
5. T.J. Fleck, T.D. Manship, S.F. Son, J.F. Rhoads, "The Effect of Process Parameters on the Structural Energetic Properties of Additively Manufactured Reactive Structures." J. Engineering Materials and Technology, (4) 2020, 041004. DOI: 10.1115/1.4047037.