SPE Industry Update
Aug. 12, 2015

The Ever-Expanding Road Ahead in Wind Energy Applications
By Don Rosato
Wind energy provides significant growth opportunities for composite plastic materials. The global market for composite materials in wind turbine production is projected to reach $4.7 billion by the end of 2015. Carbon fiber and other advanced composites are expected to play an increasing role in wind blade production, owing to the expansion of offshore installations and the adoption of larger-scale turbines that call for stiffer and lighter materials.More

Conformal Cooling Efficiencies in Stretch Blow Molding
SPE Plastics Research Online
In the past decade, a number of key advances in stretch blow molding have improved the productivity and quality of water bottles, hot-fill bottles, carbonated beverage containers, and custom-shaped oval and non-round containers. These advances, such as reheating resins faster, opening and closing molds more quickly, and higher-energy, shorter-wavelength lamps, have almost doubled the blow-molding speed of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) containers. Throughputs topping 2200 bottles per cavity per hour have become common, and the mold contact time has reduced to around 1.2 seconds.More

DuPont Automotive Survey: Aluminum, Multi-Material Solutions Head Lightweighting strategies in auto industry
Plastics Today
Aluminum heads the list of materials that the auto industry is turning to in order to meet 2025 CAFE standards according to the annual Wards Auto survey, sponsored by DuPont Automotive. 33 percent of respondents cited this material compared to 32 percent in the 2014 survey. Meanwhile, multi-material solutions proponents fell slightly for 21 percent to 19 percent of respondents. Engineering plastics and advanced high-strength steel comprise the second tier of material strategies. Further, respondents continued to express "moderate confidence" that today's materials are sufficient to meet the future standards.More

Heat-Resistant, Flexible Dielectric Polymer Could Find Application in Aerospace Power Electronics
AZoM
A team of engineers from Penn State has created a cross-linked polymer nanocomposite comprising of boron nitride nanosheets that is capable of high-voltage capacity for energy storage at high temperatures. This material is flexible and can also be photo patterned. According to the Penn State engineers, these lightweight, economical, easily manufactured, flexible dielectric polymers can withstand high temperatures and could be a viable option to storing energy and power conversion in electric vehicles and several other high temperature applications.More

APR Sharpening its Focus On Film Recycling
Plastics News
A trade group representing post-consumer plastic recyclers is ramping up efforts to improve film reclamation, further expanding its reach in the process. The Association of Postconsumer Plastic Recyclers has been increasingly active in the film recycling arena in recent years, but has taken the added step of bringing on a new, dedicated employee to further those efforts.More

Eco-Friendly 3-D Printed Supercar
Reuters
A California automotive start-up is hoping their prototype supercar will redefine car manufacturing. The sleek race car dubbed “Blade” didn't come off an assembly line - but out of a 3-D printer. Kevin Czinger of Divergent Microfactories has spent most of his career in the automotive industry. One day he realized that no matter how fuel-efficient or how few tailpipe emissions the modern car has, the business of car manufacturing is destroying the environment.More

Natural Fiber-Reinforced Plastics Among Enlighten Award Winners
Plastics News
A natural fiber-reinforced plastic automotive technology was among winners of the third-annual Altair Enlighten Award, created to recognize innovation in automotive weight reduction. Altair Engineering Inc., and the Center for Automotive Research announced the winners on Aug. 3 at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars in Traverse City.More

Radici Strengthens in Mexico
Plastics in Packaging
Radici Plastics Mexico has acquired the polyamide engineering plastics division of Mexican manufacturer Resinas TB, in a bid to strengthen its market position in the Americas. Located near Guadalajara, the facility has an installed capacity of 8,000 tons per year and employs more than 30. The newly acquired premises will allow the Radici Group to operate directly in the Mexican market.More

World's 1st Plastic Rear Axle Transmission Crossbeam
Plastics Technology
Jointly developed by ContiTech Vibration Control and BASF for the S-Class from Mercedes –Benz is reportedly the world’s first plastic transmission crossbeam in the rear axle subframe of the vehicle. This component is made of one of BASF’s new “crash grades,” Ultramid A3WG10 CR (crash-resistant), a 50 percent glass fiber reinforced specialty nylon 66.More

LyondellBasell Set to Purchase Indian Plastics Maker
Plastics Today
Plastics and chemicals maker LyondellBasell is set to buy India-based polypropylene compounds maker SJS Plastiblends. Terms of the financial agreement have not been disclosed. The purchase will expand LyondellBasell's existing footprint in India and expand the Company’s position in India's growing automotive market. The deal is expected to be finalized in late 2015.More

US Approves 1st 3-D Printed Pill
TIME
The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first 3-D printed pill. The medicine, Spritam (levetiracetam), helps to treat epilepsy. Previous levetiracetam tablets did not dissolve easily, but the new version boasts porous layers that make it easily dissolvable, according to a press release from the company, Aprecia Pharmaceuticals. More

Solid PS Prices Up; PP Down
Plastics News
North American prices for polypropylene resin slipped a little in July, while regional prices for solid polystyrene bounded up. The PP drop amounted to 1 cent per pound, although some buyers reported a 1.5 cent decline. Conversely, PS prices were up 6 cents per pound for the month. Regional ABS prices also fell an average of 6 cents per pound in the first half of the year. More