A critical review of fused deposition modeling 3D printing technology in manufacturing polylactic acid parts

Abstract

Different from other 3D printing techniques such as selective laser sintering (SLS), stereolithography (SLA), three-dimensional printing (3DP), and laminated object manufacturing (LOM), the fused deposition modeling (FDM) technology is widely used in aerospace, automobile making, bio-medicals, smart home, stationery and training aids, and creative gifts for its easy use, simple operation, and low cost. The polylactic acid (PLA) is a material most extensively applied in FDM technology for its low melting point, non-poison, non-irritation, and sound biocompatibility. The FDM 3D-printed PLA parts are a research hotspot in the 3D printing field. This paper is intended to sum up the latest research results and achievements made in recent years in the interface bonding property, mechanical properties, and shape precision promotion of FDM 3D-printed PLA parts as well as the functional expansion of the PLA parts based on vast domestic and overseas literature. The literature research collection focuses on the following two aspects: one is the macroscopic technical research on the optimal settings of key technological parameters; the other one is the PLA modification research on improvement of cross-linking state and crystallinity of PLA molecular chains, carbon reinforced phase modification of PLA, and PLA functional compound modification. The researches in the two aspects are of importance in improving whole properties, enhancing functional applications, and expanding and enriching the applications of FDM 3D-printed PLA parts. This paper is expected to give some helps and references to the researchers who are specializing in the 3D printing field.

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Funding

The authors would like to extend their thanks for the support of the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities of China University of Mining and Technology (2017XKQY008).

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Correspondence to Yanqing Wang.

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Liu, Z., Wang, Y., Wu, B. et al. A critical review of fused deposition modeling 3D printing technology in manufacturing polylactic acid parts. Int J Adv Manuf Technol 102, 2877–2889 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00170-019-03332-x

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Keywords

  • Fused deposition modeling (FDM)
  • Polylactic acid (PLA)
  • Mechanical properties
  • Functional expansion