Waste and Biomass Valorization

, Volume 10, Issue 10, pp 3115–3124 | Cite as

Development of a Glycerol Based Polymer for Additive Manufacturing

  • L. Z. OlanykEmail author
  • N. Volpato
  • M. R. Rosa
Original Paper


This paper presents a proposal to synthetize a thermoplastic polymer from glycerol designed to be used as feedstock for additive manufacturing (AM) based on the material extrusion (ME) principle. A first round of synthesis was carried out considering different variables to search a thermoplastic solid without stickiness. After the evaluation of some AM–ME basic requirements, two other synthesis groups (the second and third rounds) were prepared to verify a proper catalyst amount and reaction time. These trial samples were characterized by infrared spectrometry and thermogravimetric analysis. The material obtained which was considered the most suitable showed an amorphous structure and a glass transition slightly below room temperature. In the end, this polymer was used as feedstock to print basic geometric specimens and evaluate both filament and layer adhesion. The result suggests the feasibility to synthetize a thermoplastic polymer from glycerol for AM–ME technology. The polymer obtained from the renewable resource has the potential to become an option for this technology. However, further studies considering additives are required to improve the polymer properties, starting by increasing its glass transition temperature. In summary, the polymer obtained from the renewable resource has the potential to become an option for AM–ME technology.


Biodiesel Glycerol Thermoplastic polymer Additive manufacturing Material extrusion technology 


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Mechanical Engineering Department (DAMEC)Federal University of Technology - Paraná (UTFPR)CuritibaBrazil
  2. 2.Chemistry Department (DEQ)State University of the Center-West - Paraná (UNICENTRO)GuarapuavaBrazil

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