Polylactic acid (PLA) is a biodegradable thermoplastic polyester which has become a very popular material in the form of PLA fibres due to its ability to be heated to melting point, cooled, and reheated again without significant degradation.
PLA does not burn, but instead liquefies, which makes it easy to injection mould.
PLA is not like thermosetting plastics such as epoxy or melamine, as thermosetting plastics can only be heated and moulded once. The resulting product can no longer be reheated as it will burn. PLA can be reheated and remoulded, making it a desirable material for recycling.
PLA is used in many applications, including casting and refractory, 3D printing, packaging, upholstery, nappies, and hygiene products.
The material can also degrade into harmless lactic acid, making it useful for medical implants such as anchors, screws, plates, pins, and mesh. This means that damaged areas, for example broken bones, are able to receive support whilst the body heals. PLA medical implants can dissolve in the body within 6 months to 2 years.
Precision cut PLA fibres
Our short cut PLA fibres are the preferred option for many applications. This is because they are a versatile fibre that is ultimately biodegradable. PLA is often considered the ‘most eco-friendly plastic.’
For applications where high strength, stability, and biodegradability are required in high stress environments, we offer precision short cut PLA fibres in the following sizes:
- 7.0 decitex
Milled PLA fibres (flock)
Milled PLA flocks are used in many applications, including the reinforcement of rubber components. The addition of ground PLA adds strength, bending stiffness, and tear resistance to the final product.
We offer milled or ground polyester fibres in the following sizes:
- < 500 microns
- 500 – 1000 microns