Buyer Beware Of 3-D Printer Emissions
Source: Chemical & Engineering News, January 25, 2016
Author: Jyllian Kemsley 

As costs of three-dimensional printers drop and the devices increasingly make their way into offices, schools, and homes, users should consider how to limit exposure to emissions of particles and gases in the space where the printer is located. This caution stems from research by a team led by Brent Stephens of Illinois Institute of Technology and Neil E. Crain of the University of Texas, Austin ... . The researchers tested the emissions of five commercially available desktop 3-D polymer-extrusion printers for ultrafine particles, which have a diameter less than 100 nm, and volatile organic compounds, including caprolactam and styrene. They used the printers to make a standard part from nine different polymer filament starting materials. The emissions varied more by the type of material than they did by the type of printer. Modeling the emissions in a 45 m3 air-conditioned office, the team predicts that caprolactam and styrene would reach concentrations that could be harmful to health.

See original article in Environmental Science & Technology, "Emissions of Ultrafine Particles and Volatile Organic Compounds from Commercially Available Desktop Three-Dimensional Printers with Multiple Filaments".