The Israeli researchers have developed a photoinitiator for 3D printing in water.
3D printing structures in water has always been challenging due to a lack of water soluble molecules known as photoinitiators — the molecules that induce chemical reactions necessary to form solid printed material by light.
Professors Uri Banin and Shlomo Magdassi at the Hebrew University’s Institute of Chemistry have developed an efficient means of 3D printing in water using semiconductor-metal hybrid nanoparticles (HNPs) as the photoinitiators.
The technology opens opportunities for tailored fabrication of medical devices and for printing scaffolds for tissue engineering. For example, the researchers envision personalized fabrication of joint replacements, bone plates, heart valves, artificial tendons and ligaments, and other artificial organ replacements.