Parameters Influencing the Emission of Ultrafine Particles during 3D Printing

Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 Nov 6;18(21):11670. doi: 10.3390/ijerph182111670.


This paper presents a complex and extensive experimental evaluation of fine particle emissions released by an FDM 3D printer for four of the most common printing materials (ABS, PLA, PET-G, and TPU). These thermoplastic filaments were examined at three printing temperatures within their recommended range. In addition, these measurements were extended using various types of printing nozzles, which influenced the emissions considerably. This research is based on more than a hundred individual measurements for which a standardized printing method was developed. The study presents information about differences between particular printing conditions in terms of the amount of fine particles emitted as well as the particle size distributions during printing periods. This expands existing knowledge about the emission of ultrafine particles during 3D printing, and it can help reduce the emissions of these devices to achieve cleaner and safer 3D printer operations.

Keywords: 3D printing; air quality; emissions; fine particles; size distribution; thermoplastics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Air Pollution, Indoor* / analysis
  • Particle Size
  • Particulate Matter* / analysis
  • Printing, Three-Dimensional
  • Temperature


  • Particulate Matter