Multimaterial and Multilayer Direct Digital Manufacturing of 3-D Structural Microwave Electronics

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manufacturing, field-flow fractionation, printing, microwave circuits, dielectrics, three-dimensional printing

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Direct digital manufacturing (DDM) is an emerging technology that is finding its place across a wide array of industries and applications as a cost-effective solution for low volume and mass customizable production. This technology encompasses a class of digital manufacturing techniques which can be combined to enable multimaterial fabrication and postprocessing. One of the promising applications for DDM is structural electronics, where lightweight printed plastics provide mechanical support as a fixture, package, or structural member and also host the electrical interconnects and devices, all in a contiguous fashion. Microwave structural electronics is a specific class of such systems for which the printing resolution as well as electrical and surface properties of the materials are especially important. This paper presents the current state of DDM technology, fundamental research into the electrical and mechanical properties of as-printed structures, and novel 3-D printed structures operating from C-band through Ku-band.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

Proceedings of the IEEE, v. 105, issue 4, p. 688-701