Chemical sprays are commonly used for sterilization in places such as hospitals or medical centers. This chemical spray can kill a harmful microorganism before it causes problems, but it works well, but it is not suitable for all scenarios and requires repeated spraying to maintain surface hygiene. So what if the surface itself can be antibacterial? Thanks to 3D printing technology, scientists from the University of Sheffield have achieved this incredible feat. Their study was published in the journal Scientific Reports.
We all know that silver has a strong antibacterial capability and is even used in certain applications to prevent microbial growth, such as water cooling systems for electronic devices. Inspired by this, the researchers involved in the project developed a “silver-based antibacterial compound” which was then incorporated into 3D-printed materials.
This additive does not make 3D-printed finished products harder or more durable, but it does provide more robust antimicrobial protection. To this end, the team envisions using the manufacturing technology for bacteria-resistant devices and surfaces for use in medical institutions, including hospitals and even nursing homes.
“Controlling the spread of harmful bacteria, infections and growing resistance to antibiotics is a global concern,” said study co-author Dr. Candice Majewski. The introduction of antimicrobial protection to products and equipment at the time of manufacture can be an important tool in this struggle. Most 3D printing products do not have other features. Increasing the antibacterial properties during the manufacturing phase will make a significant difference to our use of this technology. “