Ultraviolet-Assisted Direct Ink Write to Additively Manufacture All-Aromatic Polyimides

Daniel A. Rau, Jana Herzberger, Timothy Edward Long, Christopher B. Williams*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Citations (Scopus)


All-aromatic polyimides have degradation temperatures above 500 °C, excellent mechanical strength, and chemical resistance, and are thus ideal polymers for high-temperature applications. However, their all-aromatic structure impedes additive manufacturing (AM) because of the lack of melt processability and insolubility in organic solvents. Recently, our group demonstrated the design of UV-curable polyamic acids (PAA), the precursor of polyimides, to enable their processing using vat photopolymerization AM. This work leverages our previous synthetic strategy and combines it with the high solution viscosity of nonisolated PAA to yield suitable UV-curable inks for UV-assisted direct ink write (UV-DIW). UV-DIW enabled the design of complex three-dimensional structures comprising of thin features, such as truss structures. Dynamic mechanical analysis of printed and imidized specimens confirmed the thermomechanical properties typical of all-aromatic polyimides, showing a storage modulus above 1 GPa up to 400 °C. Processing polyimide precursors via DIW presents opportunity for multimaterial printing of multifunctional components, such as three-dimensional integrated electronics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34828-34833
Number of pages6
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Issue number41
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Oct 17
Externally publishedYes


  • 3D printing
  • additive manufacturing
  • direct ink write
  • Kapton
  • PMDA-ODA polyimide
  • polyamic acid salts
  • UV-DIW

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)


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