The use of additive manufacturing/3D printing technologies continues to increase. As we discussed in our white paper, co-authored with AIG, additive manufacturing carries with it new risks not known in traditional manufacturing settings.
Last month, the American Chemical Society published an article (linked below) discussing some of the same issues we covered in the white paper. What’s changed in the last few months, though, is that scientists have started to voice opinions on the sort of appropriate measures that might be effective in reducing exposure to 3D printer emissions. The ACS article summarizes the views of several scientists who’ve participated in research characterizing the emissions from additive manufacturing.
We agree with their assessments.
Proceed with caution When the ANSI/UL printer testing standards debut this fall, they will also include a voluntary threshold for allowable levels of emissions from 3-D printers. “For VOCs there are lots of existing standards for specific compounds such as formaldehyde, styrene, and caprolactam,” UL’s Black says. Because there is much less information about UFPs, UL will set a limit based on what is possible now by redesigning printers and reformulating filaments.