PPSU Filament: Everything You Need to Know

KIMYA PPSU-S FILAMENT

PPSU filament meets the challenges of your most demanding projects, with the highest standards of thermal resistance, chemical stability.


by Editorial Staff: We are a team of 3D Printing Enthusiasts who have build a lot of knowledge about 3D Printing the last 8 years. Our aim is to create the knowledge hub for 3D Printing covering all minor and major topics. Providing one source of reliable Information for everybody regardless of Beginner or Expert.


Introduction

Polyphenylsulfone (PPSU) filament, often recognized for its trade names like Radel®, presents itself as one of the most advanced engineering thermoplastics available for 3D printing. Esteemed for its exceptional resistance to high temperatures, chemicals, and impacts, PPSU filament is strategically utilized across critical applications in aerospace, medical, and automotive industries where material failure is not an option. Its impressive heat resistance surpasses many plastics, withstanding continuous exposure to temperatures exceeding 180°C, and its inherent flame retardancy and biocompatibility make it a prime candidate for demanding environments.

Navigating the printability of PPSU can be challenging, given its requirements for high extrusion temperatures and a heated build environment to minimize distortion and ensure optimal layer adhesion. For those equipped with high-performance 3D printers and a deep understanding of material science, PPSU offers unparalleled properties that can significantly elevate the capabilities of printed parts.

About PPSU Filament

PPSU excels in applications demanding longevity and reliability under severe thermal, chemical, and mechanical stress. Its superior mechanical properties and stability under steam and radiation sterilization processes make it particularly beneficial for reusable medical devices. Furthermore, PPSU’s low moisture absorption contributes to its dimensional stability and predictable behavior in varied environments.

Achieving successful prints with PPSU filament demands adherence to strict temperature controls and the use of a 3D printer capable of maintaining these conditions throughout the print process. Despite these advanced requirements, PPSU remains an invaluable material choice for engineering applications that demand the highest performance standards.

Possible Applications of PPSU Filament

Aerospace and Automotive Components

PPSU is employed for producing durable, lightweight parts that can endure extreme temperatures and chemicals, including cabin interiors and under-the-hood components.

Medical Instruments and Devices

Its biocompatibility and resistance to sterilization make PPSU ideal for surgical instruments, sterilization trays, and other medical applications where hygiene and durability are paramount.

Fluid Handling Systems

The material’s excellent chemical resistance and thermal stability are advantageous for pumps, valves, and pipes in fluid handling systems exposed to aggressive chemicals or high temperatures.

Industrial Machinery Parts

PPSU’s strength and thermal resistance benefit gears, bearings, and other mechanical components subject to continuous wear and thermal stress.

Pros and Cons of PPSU Filament

Pros:

  • Exceptional Thermal and Chemical Resistance: Ensures performance in the harshest environments.
  • Biocompatibility and Sterilization: Safe for medical applications requiring repeated sterilizations.
  • Impact Resistance: Provides durability against mechanical stresses and impacts.
  • Flame Retardancy: Suitable for applications where fire safety is critical.

Cons:

  • Printing Challenges: Requires specialized 3D printers with high-temperature capabilities.
  • Cost: As a high-performance material, PPSU comes at a premium compared to standard filaments.
  • Demanding Print Conditions: Necessitates a heated environment and precise printing settings to achieve desired results.
  • Moisture Sensitivity: Although low, proper storage and pre-print drying are essential to maintain quality.
#KIMYA PPSU FILAMENT
#KIMYA PPSU FILAMENT

Material Settings of PPSU Filament

SettingValue
Print Temperature [°C]360 – 410
Build Plate Temperature [°C]120 – 220
Print Speed [mm/s]15 – 50
Cooling Fan [%]0 – 10
Enclosed Build ChamberRequired
Air ManagementRequired
Min Active Heated Build Chamber Temperature [°C]Not Required
DryingRequired
AnnealingRecommended

Printing with PPSU requires meticulous attention to high-temperature management and environmental control, ensuring the material’s advanced properties are fully realized in the final print.

Mechanical Properties of PPSU Filament

PropertyValue
Shore HardnessD80 – D90
Specific Gravity [g/cc]1.21 – 1.29
Tensile Strength at Break [Mpa]55 – 70
Elongation at Break [%]3 – 21
Flexural Strength [Mpa]90 – 110
Flexural Modulus [Mpa]2,150 – 2,410
Impact Strength Charpy 23˚C [kJ/m²]14 – 16
HDT B [°C]190 – 218
Tg [°C]220
UV ResistanceHigh

PPSU’s mechanical properties solidify its status as a material capable of withstanding extreme conditions, showcasing unmatched toughness, thermal stability, and reliability.

Material Comparison

MaterialPLAABSPPSU
Print Temperature [°C]180 – 235230 – 270360 – 410
DurabilityModerateHighHighest
Ease of PrintingHighModerateDifficult
UV ResistanceLowModerateHigh
Heat ResistanceLowModerateHighest

PPSU positions itself as the superior choice for durability, heat, and UV resistance among the compared materials, delivering performance that justifies its use in highly specialized applications despite the challenges in printability and higher cost.

FAQ´s about PPSU Filament

How does PPSU compare to PEEK in terms of application?

While PEEK and PPSU share many high-performance attributes, PPSU offers enhanced flame retardancy and greater ease of sterilization, making it ideal for specific medical and aerospace applications.

Can PPSU be utilized in consumer-grade 3D printers?

Typically, PPSU requires industrial-grade 3D printers capable of achieving high extrusion temperatures and maintaining a controlled print environment, making it less suitable for standard consumer-grade printing.

How can warping be mitigated when printing with PPSU?

Utilizing a heated print bed, enclosed chamber, and specific surface adhesives can significantly reduce warping risks; proper drying of the filament before use is also crucial.

Is PPSU safe for creating food-contact items?

PPSU is biocompatible and can be considered for food-contact applications, though it’s important to ensure the specific filament used complies with relevant food safety standards.

How does PPSU handle outdoor exposure?

PPSU exhibits excellent UV resistance, maintaining its properties and performance even after prolonged outdoor exposure, making it suitable for exterior applications in aerospace and automotive industries.

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