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Impact of Chemical Post-Processing in Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) on Polylactic Acid (PLA) Surface Quality and Structure

Department of Mechanical Engineering and Industrial Design, School of Engineering, University of Cadiz, Av. Universidad de Cadiz, 10, E-11519 Puerto Real, Cadiz, Spain
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Polymers 2019, 11(3), 566; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym11030566
Received: 20 February 2019 / Revised: 15 March 2019 / Accepted: 21 March 2019 / Published: 26 March 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Connecting the Fields of Polymer Reaction Engineering and Processing)
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Abstract

The application of techniques to improve the surface finish of pieces obtained by fused deposition modelling, as well as other functional aspects, is of great interest nowadays. Polylactic acid, a biodegradable material, has been considered a possible substitute for petroleum-based polymers. In this work, different chemical post-processing methods are applied to polylactic acid pieces obtained by fused deposition modelling and some characteristics are studied. Structural, thermal, and crystallinity property changes are analyzed according to the treatments applied. This can prevent degradation, eliminate the glass transition phase of the material, and thereby increase the thermal resistance by about 50 °C. An improvement in the roughness of the pieces of up to 97% was also found. View Full-Text
Keywords: additive manufacturing; organic solvent; chemical treatment; roughness; finishing processes; biodegradable polymer; green technology additive manufacturing; organic solvent; chemical treatment; roughness; finishing processes; biodegradable polymer; green technology
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Valerga, A.P.; Batista, M.; Fernandez-Vidal, S.R.; Gamez, A.J. Impact of Chemical Post-Processing in Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) on Polylactic Acid (PLA) Surface Quality and Structure. Polymers 2019, 11, 566.

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