Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Todd Letcher


elastomer, epithelial tissue, LCD 3D printing, photocurable, Polyglicerol sebacate acrylate - PGSA, scaffold


Three-dimensional scaffolding is an emerging research area in biomedical and tissue engineering. Scaffolds provide the possibility of growing tissues in a controlled environment, with desired characteristics and properties towards a specific application. A new method to 3D print biodegradable and biocompatible material called Polyglycerol Sebacate Acrylate (PGSA) is demonstrated. PGSA is essentially an acrylated form of PGS using photoinitiator to become a photocurable resin suitable for liquid crystal display (LCD) 3D printing. PGSA was selected because its rheological and crosslinking behavior (and hence its mechanical properties) can be controlled by changes in curing time, temperature, and pressure. This material has been proven cytocompatible, and capable of replicating tissue shapes according to detailed computer-aided designs. A modified LCD 3D printer consisting of a vat of photocurable resin that is suspended above an LCD screen was used. Using a UV-LED light source, the object is built layer-by-layer until the model is completed. It differs from traditional 3D printing in that the whole layer is cured simultaneously, making this a much faster process. The resin needs to be not only be photocurable, but also have optimal rheological property for control of 3D printing parameters. Here, we developed a modified PGSA suitable for LCD 3D printing. The material viscosity was characterized using a rheometer. Additionally, the material was characterized using Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) Nicolet 380. Tensile tests were conducted on the build sample to determine its mechanical properties. Last, biocompatibility tests were performed on the cell-seeded scaffold to validate its cell adhesion, cell proliferation, and cell viability. LCD 3D printing is simple, fast and can provide excellent resolution due to small pixel sizes of the LCD screen. Therefore, combining LCD 3D printing and PGSA is a very promising tool for biomedical applications by allowing complex biocompatible, elastomeric tissue scaffolds that can be highly customized without modifying the manufacturing process.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Three-dimensional printing.
Tissue engineering.
Biomedical engineering.


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University



Rights Statement

In Copyright