PLA (Poly-Lactic Acid) is a general-use bio-performance thermoplastic for open-environment 3D printing. Derived from renewable sources, such as corn, cassava, sugarcane, cereals, or sugar beet, PLA thermoplastic is biodegradable under the right conditions, giving it a reduced environmental impact.
PLA is an easy-to-use 3D printer filament in comparison to other polymers that can be printed using low-to-moderate temperatures with a higher throughput on FFF 3D printers. Its mechanical properties, as well as other final properties, are widely variable depending on the 3D printing conditions such as extruder temperature, extrusion speed, cooling system, etc. Compared to other polymers used for 3D printing, PLA demonstrates much less warping and shrinkage. For this reason, it’s possible to successfully print in an open environment without a dedicated cooling system. For applications at higher humidity (above 98%) and higher temperatures (above 60°C) other polymers, such as BigRep’s Pro HT and PETG, are recommended.
Filaments should remain sealed when being stored long term in order to prevent absorption of moisture from the air. High moisture content may harm the quality of the extrusion, leading to the clogging of the nozzles, as well as bubbles and spurting.
BigRep PLA is FDA-compliant for food safety and meets all requirements of EU Directives on food contact.