The advantages of additive manufacturing have come to the fore over the past months. Additive manufacturing has offered a solution for issues ranging from a shortage of ventilator components to protective masks, making it possible to reproduce parts decentrally in order to meet unexpected demands.
3D-printed parts are easily modified using CAD software and adaptable to changing circumstances with no constraints. One of the most commonly used resins in additive manufacturing is PLA.
Italy-based Benvic, which markets an extensive range of PLA compounds for compostable and durable use under the name Plantura, has seen demand for its products rise strongly during the pandemic, the company said – in particular from companies supplying to the medical sector.
Benvic has now developed antibacterial polymer compounds, with the help of a new additive. According to the company, the inbuilt feature of the new Benvic additive prevents bacteria proliferation on any kind of plastic surface, particularly for those who are expected to be in contact with body skin’.
Benvic’s bacteriostatic polymer has been tested for compliance to international quality standards, ISO22196 and ISO 846. Benvic developed the material in collaboration with its filament partner for an end user in Italy who is using it to print protective face shields.
“Such masks are customized in line with the user morphology which is only made possible via the 3D printing process. Our new materials can make these masks reusable simply by changing the filter. In this way we can optimize resources in order to fight the virus,” said Camilla Bortolon, account manager for the Plantura product range.
The bacteriostatic additive - a technology that is exclusive to Benvic – is also available as a masterbatch or compound for thermoplastic polymers.
Benvic is an independent group and a leader in European polymer compounding for various markets. The compounder has production facilities in France, Italy, Spain, Poland and UK.