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GRD Journals- Global Research and Development Journal for Engineering | Volume 4 | Issue 9 | August 2019

ISSN: 2455-5703

A Study on the Effect of Infill Percentage and

Infill Pattern on the Compressive Behaviour of
the FDM Printed Polylactic Acid (PLA) Polymer
Anas Mirza Baig
M. Tech student
Department of Mechanical Engineering
Integral University, Lucknow, U. P. (India)

Dr. K. M. Moeed Md. Shakibul Haque

Associate Professor Sr. Lecturer
Department of Mechanical Engineering Department of Mechanical Engineering
Integral University, Lucknow, U. P. (India) Integral University, Lucknow, U. P. (India)


Fused deposition modelling (FDM) is chiefly using polylactic acid (PLA) as material of choice. PLA can be used to print a var iety
of components like medical implants, domestic products & mechanical parts etc. The variation in infill pattern as well as infill
percentage impacts the mechanical behaviour of the printed part. In the present study FDM printed PLA specimens subjected to
compressive tests in order to observe their behaviour under compressive forc es.
Keywords- Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM), Polylactic Acid (PLA), Infill Percentage, Infill Pattern, Compressive

One of the biggest advantage of the 3D printing technology is that the components with different infill geometries and infill patterns
can be printed. This not only saves material but also reduces the overall component cost. 3D printing process has been succes sfully
utilized in comparative study of biostructure [12], scaffold structures [14], micro-fabrication [6] and light weight UAV (unmanned
aerial vehicles) [11] and design of police whistles [13]. This process is also used for studying the compressive and tensile behaviour
of Natural Sand Stone [8]. Many prior study has suggested that this process can be used to print a wide variety of polymers [15]
and composites [7] even multi-nozzle extrusion printing is also possible [16], [4]. This process is also capable of printing density
variables parts [17], with different type of infill generation [18]. Literature survey of prior investigation reveals that there is a
significant effect of printing orientation, density, and filler pattern [19], layer thickness and raster angle [1], [20], [5] , [6] on
mechanical performance of part like compressive performance [19], fatigue performance [21] , surface roughness tensile streng th
[3], [9] and maximum flexure properties [2], [22]. The study has also shown that this process can also be integrated with design
and manufacturing data [12].


A. Test Specimens
Test specimens were printed using FDM technology. The cross section of the specimen used was 12.7 mm × 12.7 mm with a length
of 25.4 mm. The specimens were printed with three different infill patterns i.e. hexagonal, triangular, and linear and three different
infill percentages i.e. 25%, 50%, and 100%. The general values for the material properties are following:
Bulk Density (g/cm3) 1.24 g/cm3
Infill (%) 25% , 50% , 100%
Shell Thickness 0.3 mm
Layer Thickness 0.3 mm
Printing method FDM
Printer Flash Forge Guider II
Infill Pattern Hexagonal, linear and triangular
Colour Red
Extruder temperature 220 o C
Bed Temperature 65 o C

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A Study on the Effect of Infill Percentage and Infill Pattern on the Compressive Behaviour of the FDM Printed Polylactic Acid (PLA) Polymer
(GRDJE/ Volume 4 / Issue 9 / 002)

B. Printer Specifications
Name Guider Ⅱ
Number of Extruder 1
Print Technology Fused Filament Fabrication(FFF)
Build Volume 280*250*300mm
Layer Resolution 0.05 - 0.4mm
Build Accuracy ±0.2mm
Positioning Accuracy Z axis 0.0025mm; XY axis 0.011mm
Filament Diameter 1.75mm (±0.07)
Nozzle Diameter 0.4mm
Print Speed 10~200 mm/s
Software FlashPrint

C. Universal Testing Machine

The Universal Testing Machine used for performing co mpressive test was model UTE 40 manufactured by Fuel Instruments &
Engineers Pvt. Ltd. (Mumbai, India). The specifications of the UTM are:
Max. Capacity - 400 kN
Measuring range - 0 – 400 kN
Loading unit - Hydraulic
Control panel - Electronic
Extensometer – Electronic

D. Compressive Test
3 specimens of each combination was tested and the mean value was taken for the conclusion purpose. The failure of the specimen
was considered when either plastic deformation has reached or printing layer separation was observed. Procedure was as follows:
 Load the specimen on the UTM
 Start the machine
 Record the load and corresponding deflection
 Plot the curve using excel

E. Formula used
 Stress = Load applied / cross section area of the specimen
 Strain = Deformation / original length
 Strength to weight ratio = Strength / Mass of specimen
 Young’s Modulus = Stress/ Strain


A. Results
After conducting several experiments the results obtained are gathered in tabular form below:
Failure compressive load
25% 50% 100%
Hexagonal 5.6 7.03 6.61
Triangular 4.58 5.75 6.61
Linear 5.26 6.56 6.61
All the values presented above are in Kilo-Newtons.
To visualize the distribution of above data following graph is plotted:

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A Study on the Effect of Infill Percentage and Infill Pattern on the Compressive Behaviour of the FDM Printed Polylactic Acid (PLA) Polymer
(GRDJE/ Volume 4 / Issue 9 / 002)

1) Strength to Weight Ratio

Strength to weight ratio is an important consideration when speaking of infill percentages. The following data has been obser ved
in the present experiment:
25% 50% 100%
Hexagonal 2.63 2.13 1.17
Triangular 1.94 1.65 1.17
Linear 2.40 1.96 1.17
To visualize above data following graph has been generated:

2) Young’s Modulus
The test data obtained is used to calculate the young’s modulus. The results have been shown below:
25% 50% 100%
Hexagonal 8.81 11.07 10.41
Triangular 7.21 9.05 10.41
Linear 8.28 10.33 10.41
All the values presented above are in kN/mm2
When the above data is plotted following graph appeared:

B. Conclusions
 Maximum yield load of 7.03 kN was observed for Hexagonal pattern with 50% infill while the minimum 4.58 kN was for
triangular with 25% infill
 Although solid specimen started to yield at lower load than hexagonal with 50% but after yield point due to solid infill the
load required for further deformation kept increasing while in all other cases it kept decreasing
 The stress strain analysis suggested that all the infill percentage and infill patterns combination shows somewhat similar graph
with exception solid infill condition
 Maximum Strength to weight ratio observed was 2.63 in hexagonal pattern with 25% infill while Minimum Strength to weight
observed was 1.17 in case of 100% infill specimen
 The graph of infill vs printing time suggested that the maximum printing time occurred around 90% infill percentage for the
given infill pattern, usually increasing infill percentage more than 50% yields more printing time than 100% infill this is d ue
to complex movements that printer has to make in order to print the patterns inside the specimen

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A Study on the Effect of Infill Percentage and Infill Pattern on the Compressive Behaviour of the FDM Printed Polylactic Acid (PLA) Polymer
(GRDJE/ Volume 4 / Issue 9 / 002)

 The graph of infill percentage vs material used plots almost a straight line as expected logically, the maximum variation was
observed in triangular infill pattern while the minimum variation is observed in linear infill pattern
 The maximum Young’s Modulus observed was 11.07 kN/mm2 in the case of Hexagonal pattern with 50% infill while the
minimum Young’s Modulus observed was 7.21 kN/mm2 in the case of triangular infill pattern with 25% infill pattern

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