3D printers have been widely used as a tool for prototype manufacturing in industries, schools, and homes. During operation, 3D printing emits ultrafine particles that could be inhaled by the user and induce adverse health effects. Thus, exposure to ultrafine 3D-printing generated particles has drawn the attention of occupational and environmental health researchers.
In this study, a recently developed Mobile Aerosol Lung Deposition Apparatus (MALDA) was applied to investigate the respiratory deposition of ultrafine 3D printing particles. The MALDA consists of a set of representative human airway replicas from mouth, throat, trachea, down to the bronchiolar airways of the 11th bifurcation generation. A series of respiratory deposition experiments were carried out in the laboratory using the MALDA and a desktop 3D printer to estimate the deposition of ultrafine 3D printing particles in individual generations of the lung. Results showed that the cumulative deposition from the 1st to 11th bifurcation generations was found to be 1%–13% depending on the particle size, which was slightly less than the respiratory deposition predicted from the conventional deposition curve.
Source: Science Direct