Lignin-Containing Photoactive Resins for 3D Printing by Stereolithography

Generating compatible and competitive materials that are environmentally sustainable and economically viable is paramount for the success of additive manufacturing using renewable materials. We report the successful application of renewable, modified lignin-containing photopolymer resins in a commercial stereolithography system. Resins were fabricated within operable ranges for viscosity and cure properties, using up to 15% modified lignin by weight with the potential for higher amounts. A four-fold increase in ductility in cured parts with higher lignin concentration is noted as compared to commercial SLA resins. Excellent print quality was seen in modified lignin resins, with good layer fusion, high surface definition, and visual clarity. These materials can be used to generate new products for additive manufacturing applications and help fill vacant material property spaces, where ductility, sustainability, and application costs are critical.