Process chain for serial manufacture of polymer components with micro- and nano-scale features: Optimisation Issues

Pierre Vella , Stefan Dimov, Alexander Kolew

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This paper reports a follow-up research to investigate further the component technologies of a cost effective manufacturing route designed to achieve function and length scale integration (FLSI) in products. The route employs a viable master-making process chain that integrates compatible and at the same time complementary, structuring and replication technologies to fabricate Zr-based bulk metallic glass inserts. To validate them they are subsequently integrated in a micro-injection moulding (µIM) machine and polymer structures incorporating both micro- and nano -scale features are replicated. Especially, the masters and/or replicas after each processing step were analysed and the factors affecting its overall performance were identified. The research demonstrated that the master-making process chain can be a viable fabrication route for both fully amorphous and partially crystalline Zr-based BMG inserts that incorporate different length scale features. The results also showed that relatively good fidelity of the different scale features can be achieved with the µIM process and thus it can enable FLSI in thermoplastic components.
Original languageEnglish
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineering Part B Journal of Engineering Manufacture
Early online date5 Feb 2016
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Feb 2016


  • Micro Manufacturing, Process Chains, Micromilling, Hot Embossing, Focused Ion Beam Milling, Micro-Injection Moulding, Bulk Metallic Glasses, Function and Length Scale Integration, Wear, Fatigue

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanical Engineering


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