3D printing of titanium-coated gradient composite lattices for lightweight mandibular prosthesis

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

39 Scopus Citations
View graph of relations


Original languageEnglish
Article number108057
Journal / PublicationComposites Part B: Engineering
Online published9 Apr 2020
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jul 2020


Compared with conventional prosthesis with homogenous structures, functionally graded lattice prosthesis with optimized stress distribution have both mechanical and biological advantages, thus better adapt to the gradient nature of host bones. In this study, we focus on design and fabricating mandibular prosthesis based on polymer stereolithography apparatus (SLA) 3D printing with metallic coating, to explore the graded lattice prosthesis application. Firstly, mandibular stress distribution under the centric occlusal condition was obtained by finite element method (FEM). Titanium (Ti)-coated polymer lattices with gradient porosities were then made by SLA and physical vapor deposition (PVD). Compression test was performed to characterize the fabricated lattices, and Gibson-Ashby crushing strength formula was fitted to obtain gradient porosity distribution of the lattices corresponding to mandibular stress distribution. Our results show that the Ti-coated lattices were able to withstand compressive strains exceeding 20% with 2–3 times increase in compressive strength, while the porosities of the lattices corresponding to the maximum and minimum stress regions of human mandible (68.3% and 86.3%, respectively) shows ~20% gradient difference, suggesting the practical application of functionally graded lattices in potential prosthesis design as well as other biomedical applications.

Research Area(s)

  • 3D printing, Composite lattice, Functionally graded design, Mandibular prosthesis, Mechanical properties