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Particle and volatile organic compound emissions from a 3D printer filament extruder
Science of the Total Environment ( IF 5.589 ) Pub Date : 2020-05-22 , DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2020.139604
Peter Byrley; M. Ariel Geer Wallace; William K. Boyes; Kim Rogers

Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM®), also known as Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF), 3D printers have been shown in numerous studies to emit ultrafine particles and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Filament extruders, designed to create feedstocks for 3D printers, have recently come onto the consumer market for at-home hobbyists as an alternative to buying 3D printer filaments. These instruments allow for the creation of 3D printer filaments from raw plastic pellets. Given the similarity in processes and materials used by 3D printers and filament extruders, we hypothesized that filament extruders may also release ultrafine particle emissions and VOCs. An off-the-shelf filament extruder was operated in a 2 m3 chamber using three separate feedstocks: acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) pellets, pulverized poly-lactic acid (PLA), and PLA pellets. Ultrafine particle emissions were measured in real-time using a scanning mobility particle sizer and thermal desorption tubes were used for both non-targeted and targeted analysis of VOCs present in emissions. Ultrafine particle number emission rates were comparable to those found in 3D printer studies with the greatest to least emission rates from ABS pellets, pulverized PLA, and PLA pellets, respectively. In addition, the majority of particles released were found to be ultrafine (1–100 nm), similar to 3D printer studies. A variety of VOCs were identified using the ABS feedstock, including styrene and ethylbenzene, and PLA feedstock. Styrene average mass concentration amounts were found to be near the EPA Integrated Risk Information System Reference Concentration for Inhalation Exposure for 3 min and 5 min samples. Further studies will be needed to determine the impact on emissions of environmental volume, air exchange rate, and extruder settings such as extrusion speed and temperature. The results support the hypothesis that use of a filament extruder may present an additional exposure risk to 3D printer hobbyists.
更新日期:2020-05-22

 

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