3D printing and additive manufacturing approaches for microwave metamaterials

Meta-materials are artificial materials that have properties unavailable from single material classes or composites and have been demonstrated in the lab to enable exciting phenomena as cloaking, invisibility, beam bending and steering that may find use in advanced communications, energy transfer, sensor and security applications. These and other novel properties of meta-materials arises from their unusual interactions with electromagnetic radiation, such as and microwaves. However, theoretical designs with meta-materials are outstripping practical demonstration and testing, and there is a need and exciting opportunity to develop new processing approaches to fabricate practical meta-materials for engineering applications.

This project focuses on new processing approaches to build active meta-materials with graded dielectric and magnetic properties using 3D printing. An active meta-material is one that can be switched or controlled using an external stimulus such as electricity, magnetism, light, etc, and are at the early stages of development. The project will develop a number of active meta-material ideas using our in-house 3D printing facility to produce functioning demonstrators for measurement. The work will involve interaction with designers using simulations and specialists in measurements in the mega to gigahertz range. At all stages, a key aspect will be to characterise the microstructure and performance of the feedstock materials, and the devices, you have developed. The project will also involve developing novel implementations of the additive manufacture process itself in order to allow 3D active devices to be fabricated.

spray processing


The description above outlines a possible new research project being offered to prospective new postgraduate students.

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