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New PVA Alternative Can Dissolve 20% Faster in Water

Published on August 5, 2022 by Madeleine P.

Infinite Materials Solutions LLC (Infinite) has announced the launch of a new water-soluble support material that it has put forth as a direct competitor to PVA. Named AquaSys General Purpose (AquaSys GP), the support material has been designed to be compatible with most polyesters including PLA and PETG. Infinite claims that AquaSys GP addresses drawbacks of using PVA, notably dissolving 20% faster than the other support material when placed in water.

You have almost certainly heard of supports in 3D printing. For complex parts, they are critical to ensure that there will be no print failures, especially when you have overhangs or  bridges. That being said, they can be difficult to work with. Using supports increases material costs and can increase post-processing, especially for those with a single nozzle. For those working with dual extruder printers, however, support removal can be much simpler as you can choose specifically designed support materials which are designed to be easily removed. One of the most popular is PVA since it can be dissolved in water. Now, Infinite has released AquaSys GP which it believes could become a new industry standard as it overcomes certain common disadvantages to working with PVA.

PVA is a popular support material, however Infinite believes AquaSys GP could become a new industry standard (photo credits: Zortrax)

What is Different About AquaSys® General Purpose?

Similar to PVA, AquaSys GP is what is known as a water-soluble material. As the name suggests, this means that when placed in water, it will be dissolved. This is a preferable trait for many using support materials as it eliminates the need for harsh chemicals. What is interesting about AquaSys GP is that the manufacturer claims that it dissolves 20% faster in room-temperature tap water. According to Infinite, this will help users to save both time and costs when making their parts.

Beyond this, the material also distinguishes itself from PVA by its compatibility with not just PLA but also with materials like PET and PETG, which generally cannot be printed with PVA. Moreover, AquaSys GP can be printed under challenging humidity conditions whereas one of the most notable drawbacks of PVA is that it must be kept in very dry environments for optimal printing. Overall, AquaSys has been designed to appeal to a wide range of consumers from hobbyists to seasoned professionals, and could be used even with lower-cost dual extruder printers.

Jeff Feddersen, Senior Sales Manager at Infinite concludes, “We’ve been listening to our customers for years and have heard their frustrations with the drawbacks of PVA materials.We’re happy to finally bring them AquaSys GP. PLA comprises 70% of all build materials used in the fused deposition modeling (FDM) market—we really think this is going to change everything and become the standard by which all other support materials are judged.” You can learn more about the material HERE.

AquaSys GP

A part printed with AquaSys as a support before (right) and after (left) removal (photo credits: Infinite)

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