Denmark | Mapping and risk assessment of 3D pens



With this mapping and risk assessment, the Danish Environmental Protection Agency wants to gain more knowledge about the content of chemical substances in materials used in 3D pens and to assess whether play with 3D pens can pose a risk to children's health.

3D pens are small, hand-held tools that can extrude plastic material into thin strands and thus be used to create shapes in 3D. Several types of 3D pens are marketed to children. With this mapping and risk assessment, the Danish Environmental Protection Agency wants to gain more knowledge about the content of chemical substances in materials used in 3D pens and to assess whether play with 3D pens can pose a risk to children's health.

The survey shows that in 3D pens for children primarily materials that cure by reducing temperature or by UV lighting are used. Screening analyzes of materials for 3D pens indicated a content of a large number of chemical substances 16 substances were selected for quantitative analysis, of which 4 (styrene, vanillin, acrylic acid and n-butyl methacrylate) were selected for evaluation of the health risk using 3D- pens. It is estimated that the content of styrene and vanillin is not expected to pose a risk, while the risk calculations for content of acrylic acid and n-butyl methacrylate cannot reject that the threshold values for health effects can be exceeded in a worst-case scenario assuming full migration. Both substances were found in materials that cure by UV lighting. This mapping is the first on 3D pens. It focuses on exposure to chemical substances, but it was not possible within the framework of the project to quantify and evaluate all identified chemical substances in the materials studied. Likewise, measurements have not been carried out in real-life situations or examined aspects such as combination effects and particle formation in relation to assessment of the health risk of children's use of 3D pens. 

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