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Medical plastic process developments take center stage
By Don Rosato
Plastics are integral to the entire medical industry's supply chain and their use is projected to surge as the population ages. As demand for smaller medical devices grows, innovative manufacturing technologies are being adopted to allow for production of ultra-precise designs. The medical device universe encompasses a particularly imposing spectrum of constant technological innovation, including hundreds of different technologies and thousands of types of products. Let's start by taking a look at high-definition microextruded medical fibers.
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SPE HIGHLIGHTS

Toughening epoxy thermosetting polymer
SPE Plastics Research Online
Toughening brittle epoxy polymers is critical to broadening their possible uses, especially in structural applications. A common method is to introduce a second phase into the matrix as a toughening modifier, and low-molecular-weight liquid rubbers are widely used for this purpose. This often increases the impact and fracture properties significantly, but reduces the tensile properties and thermal resistance.
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CALENDAR OF EVENTS

Date Event More Information
Jan. 21-22 ANTEC® Dubai 2014 Register
Feb. 23-26 2014 SPE International Polyolefins Conference Register
Feb. 23-26 Plastics News Executive Forum 2014 Information
Feb. 24-26 SPE Thermoset Conference 2014 Register
March 12-14 GPEC ® 2014 Register
March 25-26 Successful Plastic Part Design — The Fundamentals Revealed! Register
April 1-2 Plastics Financial Summit 2014 Information
April 3-4 9th European Thermoforming Conference Information
April 28-30 ANTEC® 2014 Register
May 6 AutoEPCON 2014 Information
May 6-8 Plastics in Medical Devices 2014 Information
May 31 Plastics & Polymers Innovation Awards Information
June 1-4 Rotational Molding Conference 2014 Information



PLASTICS INDUSTRY NEWS

Major milestone for plastics in the shale gas era
Plastics News
Nova Chemicals Corp. recently became the first plastics company to use ethane from the Marcellus Shale Basin to convert to ethylene. Nova senior vice president Chris Bezaire gave the story exclusively to Plastics News correspondent Mike Lauzon, saying that the company was — this is how he put it — "introducing our first molecules from Marcellus" to Nova's Corunna, Ontario, cracker.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Thermoforming Crush Test & Plug Design
How do you ensure that your thermoformed container is going to mechanically withstand the rigors of the end-use application? Why is crush resistance important for thermoforming? Are your parts failing due to thin spots or weak corners? Read how CMT Materials explains the relationship between material distribution and crush resistance.
 



Plastic foam demand mounts a healthy recovery
Plastics Engineering
U.S. demand for plastic foams is forecast to rise 4.1 percent annually to 8.6 billion pounds in 2017, valued at $24.7 billion. The market will mount a healthy recovery from the declines posted during the recession-impacted 2007-2012 period. Freedonia analyst Bridget McMurtrie notes, "The construction sector is anticipated to enjoy particularly robust growth prospects, as renewed strength in construction activity generates significant opportunities for foam insulation products." Packaging will remain the leading outlet for plastic foams through 2017, accounting for nearly one-third of total volume.
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Medical plastic process developments take center stage
By Don Rosato
Plastics are integral to the entire medical industry's supply chain and their use is projected to surge as the population ages. As demand for smaller medical devices grows, innovative manufacturing technologies are being adopted to allow for production of ultra-precise designs.

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European plastics 'set to change'
Recycling International
The odds for plastics recycling in Europe are slowly but surely improving, with an average of 26 percent of plastic waste recycled across the continent. "Also, we know there is already a plan to implement a landfill ban in Poland."

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The renaissance of bioplastics: A not-so-natural process
By Igor Catic
In 2011, the world production of bioplastics was less than 0.5 percent of total plastics production. But when you read news articles, you get a somewhat strange impression that the most important materials now and in the future are eco-friendly bioplastics.

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Plastic made from pollution hits U.S. market
USA Today
A decade ago in his Princeton dorm room, Mark Herrema had an aha moment. He read a newspaper story about the rise in heat-trapping methane emissions from dairy farms and decided to do something about it. He thought — why not pull the carbon from the air and use it to make stuff?
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How are your vendors doing? Tell us in the SPE Plastics Industry Resource.



Plastic-foam ban approved by New York council
Crain's New York Business
Plastic-foam food and drink containers in New York are set to go the way of trans fats and smoking in bars as the City Council voted to ban them in the name of environmental responsibility. The Democratic-led, 51-member body passed the legislation unanimously recently. It prohibits restaurants, food carts and stores in the largest U.S. city from selling or providing single-use cups, clamshells and trays, as well as peanut-shaped packing materials, made from a type of thermoplastic petrochemical called expanded polystyrene.
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  FEATURED COMPANIES
Screen Changers & Melt Pumps: 10% discount
PSI-Polymer Systems is a leading U.S. supplier of technology-driven Screen Changers, Extrusion Gear Pumps and Static Mixers for the Polymer Extrusion, Recycling and Food Industries.
EMI - New Extruded Frame Conveyors
The new EA model is EMI's 3rd generation of aluminum conveyors – the culmination of our 20 years’ experience engineering and building extruded aluminum conveyors. MORE



Boosting solar efficiency with simple, low-cost polymer
Novus Light Technologies Today
Researchers from North Carolina State University and the Chinese Academy of Sciences have developed a polymer made up of readily available and easily synthesized monomers that can boost solar cell efficiency by 30 percent. Polymer-based solar cells have two domains, consisting of an electron acceptor and an electron donor material. Excitons are the energy particles created by solar cells when light is absorbed.
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The 1st-ever 3-D-printed book cover
TIME
Everybody knows what a book looks like. Even as e-books become more popular, the basic idea is the same as it's been for centuries: a rectangular block. And Chang-rae Lee's "On Such a Full Sea" is no exception — on the inside, at least. On the outside, however, the novel is something entirely new.
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  PRODUCT SHOWCASES
Ultrasonic Welding Machine

The ultrasonic welding machine Easy 3000 Series is suitable for welding operations of thermoplastic parts from medium to large size.


Clean Plast® is a ready-to-use purging compound in pellet form that will minimize your purging problems! Clean Plast® has been put through vigorous tests and has been reformulated time and time again, to continuously improve and perfect product performance. We believe we have the best cleaning solution for the plastics industry and that this product is more effective than any other product out in the market. Clean Plast® will help to eliminate future problems with streaking, black specs and hard to clean resin. Contact me today for a FREE PURGE TRIAL at your plant and see the difference a Clean Plast® Purge makes.
DryCleaner Furnaces

PCPC's DryCleaner furnaces are designed to safely and economically remove small amounts (1 to 2% by weight) of varnish, insulation, epoxy, paint, oil, grease, plastics, etc. primarily from electric motor stators, transformers, end bells, engine blocks and other metal parts.



Tupperware still innovating with plastics
Plastics News
When many consumers think of plastic, Tupperware comes to mind. Thanks to the company's direct sales strategy, the famously kitschy Tupperware parties that were popular in the 1950s and still go on today; perhaps no plastic brand occupies a bigger place in American pop culture.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  iQ Series Servo Ultrasonic Press System
Dukane's patented iQ Advanced Servo Welder is the next step in the evolution of ultrasonic welding technology. Combining the efficiency and reliability of a 100% digitally controlled Multi-Core iQ Series power supply with the precision of an advanced servo press, the Dukane Advanced iQ Servo Welder delivers unprecedented repeatability, accuracy and reliability to your ultrasonic bonding process. MORE
 



Technical article by Porvair Filtration Group on how sintered porous plastics are used in industrial applications
AZoM
Porvair Filtration Group has written a technical article that documents the evolution of how sintered porous plastics have been used in industrial applications to their incorporation today in novel Chromatin Immunoprepitation assay kits used by scientists at the forefront of epigenetics research.
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  FEATURED COMPANIES
Hanser Publications

Premier Plastics Technology Books

Visit us online at
hanserpublications.com.
A seal for limited space
MECO’s AH Type-2 split seal space requirements are 2.5” (65mm) around the shaft and 4” (100mm) along the shaft. Much smaller values are possible.



3-D printing investing will be more complex in 2014
Engineering.com
2013 was a big year for 3-D printing. With media outlets hyping the technology and a number of printers reaching consumer-pricing levels, public awareness of the technology has never been better. Given the explosion in awareness, it's no surprise that investors have been eager to support 3-D printing leaders like 3D Systems and Stratasys.
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3-D printing market to expand 10-fold by 2017; consumer/prosumer market to drive growth
Plastics Today
There's no doubt that 3-D printing has become the buzzword of late and its reach is now penetrating outside traditional industrial design and additive manufacturing and into the consumer and "prosumer" field. Low-cost 3-D printing options will allow consumers to materialize their own designs such as toys and key chains, and even sell them online.
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Carbon fibre reinforced plastics market continues growth path (Part 1)
Reinforced Plastics
The association of composite companies and research institutes Carbon Composites e.V. has produced its latest review of the global carbon fibre market. Mark Holmes reports on the findings and outlook for the future, which demonstrate increases in carbon fibre use and influence in key composite markets.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Coatings: The skin of plastic matter (By Adolfo Benedito)
Radar absorbing composites reinforced with barium hexaferrite powder (SPE Plastics Research Online)
Are plastics the new natural gas? (News@Northeastern)
Converting recycled plastics into disease-fighting nanofibers (Phys.Org)
$42-million contract for Axion Recycled Plastics (Canadian Manufacturing)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.





Bioprinting breakthrough: UK researchers print eye cells
Plastics Today
The emerging field of bioprinting in regenerative medicine has achieved a new milestone with the use of an inkjet printer to print two types of cells from the retina of adult rats. It is the first time the technology has been used successfully to print mature central nervous system cells, according to researchers from the John van Geest Centre for Brain Repair at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. The printed ganglion and glial cells remained healthy and were able to survive and grow in culture, said Professor Keith Martin and Dr. Barbara Lorber, who co-authored the study published in the journal Biofabrication.
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  FEATURED COMPANIES
Precision Solutions through Optimized Tubing

A global leader in precision polymer extrusions and material science, Zeus excels at optimized tubing solutions including flaring, flanging, draw downs, drilling, etching and more.
Genarex - The Future of Biopolymers
Bylox – A plant-based biopolymer that enables cost reduction and improved performance.

  • Creates an inexpensive resin replacement
  • Very flexible with various resins
  • Produces good consistent master batch; consistent quality in molding and extrusion
  • Can offset plasticizers in adhesive formulations
  • MORE
     
     

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    Disclaimer: The SPE Industry Update is a digest of the most important news selected for the Society of Plastics Engineers from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs. Neither MultiBriefs nor the Society of Plastics Engineers is responsible for opinions or statements of facts expressed in the articles referenced in SPE Industry Update. Advertising appearing in SPE Industry Update is not to be taken as an endorsement, expressed or implied, of the respective company's processes, products or services represented in the ad.

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