electrochemical 3D-printer, electrodeposition of copper, secondary current density distribution, scattering capacity, printing accuracy


Background. New 3D-printing technologies are becoming more and more advanced and widespread in the twenty-first century. One of the types of 3D-printing is electrochemical 3D-printing, in which electrochemical deposition of metals is used to form metal products. Potentially, this method of 3D-printing is the most energy efficient, the least material-intensive, and also the easiest to implement. There- fore, research aimed at creating and improving systems for electrochemical 3D-printing is promising.

Objective. The aim of the paper is to study the influence of geometric parameters of the system and the composition of the elec trolyte on the current distribution on the surface of the working electrode (cathode) in the process of electrochemical 3D-printing, and therefore print accuracy.

Methods. Volt-amperometric measurements and multi-physical computer modelling of the secondary distribution of current density using COMSOL MULTYPHYSICS for different geometric parameters of the working part of the 3D-printer and different composition of electrolytes.

Results. Based on the simulation of the secondary distribution of current density in copper sulphate electrolyte, it was found that the content of sulfuric acid in the solution should be minimal in order to purposefully deposit metal in the area directly under the working electrode. Based on the condition of maximum energy efficiency and accuracy of electrochemical 3D-printing, the optimal ratio between the deposition surface (cathode) and the edge of the non-conductive body of working electrode was found.

Conclusions. It was established that in order to narrow the zone of current scattering (increase the accuracy of electrochemical 3D-printing) it is necessary to ensure the optimal ratio between the diameter of the capillary and the edge of the non-conductive body of the counter electrode. It was shown that this ratio should not be less than 5 [mm / mm]. Further applied research will be aimed at adaptation and practical implementation of the obtained model data, optimization of the electrolyte composition and design of the 3D-printer.


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