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New applied automotive weight-saving process technologies
By Don Rosato
The average car contains 400 pounds of plastics or approximately 14 percent of its total weight, and these numbers are accelerating in car manufacturing. Weight-saving measures are expected to be applied to every model that launches over the coming years. Innovative materials combined with new process technology methods and reinforcing structures will play an important role in reducing vehicle weight. As the automotive industry gears up to meet new emissions regulations, lightweight plastics will play a critical role. Let's take a look at some emerging automotive weight-saving process technologies.
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SPE HIGHLIGHTS


Simple toughening of epoxy thermosets by preformed thermoplastics
SPE Plastics Research
Reinforcing with microspheres avoids the need for solvent removal and improves impact strength and fracture toughness without compromising tensile properties. Cured epoxy resins are widely used as the matrix material in fiber-reinforced plastics. However, they are inherently brittle in nature, which limits their use to less demanding applications where impact resistance is of secondary importance.
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April 28-30 ANTEC® 2014 Register
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May 6-8 Plastics in Medical Devices 2014 Information
June 1-4 Rotational Molding Conference 2014 Information
June 11-12 Plastics & Polymers Innovation Awards Information
June 19-11 Decorating and Assembly: New Technology Information
September 8-11 SPE Foams® 2014 Information
September 9-10 Bio-Based Global Summit Information
September 11 14th Annual Automotive Composites Conference Information
September 14-16 23rd CAD RETEC 20145 Information
September 15-19 23rd Annual Thermoforming Conference Information
September 16-18 11th Thermoplastic Elastomers Top Con Information
September 17 11th Plastics & Polymers Innovation Awards Information
September 30-October 2 SPE Bioplastic Materials 2014 Information



PLASTICS INDUSTRY NEWS


Plastics injection molders injecting innovations to gain competitive edge
Business Standard
From being a mere mechanical pile of churning out molded plastic products, the injection molding machinery industry today has become a major contributor in the process of converting plastics to complex and complicated parts and assemblies. This move up the value chain has become possible as customers have begun to voice more demands in terms of changes in cost, quality and service.
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  New HYTAC Processing Guidelines
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Study: Plastic packaging offers significantly reduced energy use, fewer greenhouse gases
SPE Plastics Engineering
We've all read it in the newspaper. Seen it on TV news reports. And heard it from our friends and neighbors: Plastic packaging is a big waste of energy because it's made from crude oil and natural gas. And if plastic packaging is a waste of energy, surely it also must be creating egregious amounts of greenhouse gas emissions. Well, not according to two large studies, one done in Europe in 2010 and another completed in North America in early 2014.
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New applied automotive weight-saving process technologies
By Don Rosato
The average car contains 400 pounds of plastics or approximately 14 percent of its total weight, and these numbers are accelerating in car manufacturing. Weight-saving measures are expected to be applied to every model that launches over the coming years. Innovative materials combined with new process technology methods and reinforcing structures will play an important role in reducing vehicle weight. As the automotive industry gears up to meet new emissions regulations, lightweight plastics will play a critical role. Let's take a look at some emerging automotive weight-saving process technologies.

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Automotive lightweighting — Flash-forward material highlights
By Don Rosato
Automotive lightweighting with alternative plastic materials will remain an important technology trend into the foreseeable 2020-2025 time period. The lightweighting potential of every vehicle component is currently under investigation, and advanced plastics and plastic composites offer significant lightweighting potential. Fiber-reinforced plastic composites are typically 25-35 percent lighter than steel parts of equal strength. Low and ultra-low density sheet molding compound advances are also facilitating weight reductions.

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3-D printing and its impact on the medical implant industry
By Hannah Whiteoak
As 3-D printing develops, it is finding an ever-greater range of applications in a variety of fields. One area where 3-D printing could truly change lives is in the manufacturing of medical implants. From artificial bone and joint replacements to prosthetic body parts and life-saving pacemakers, medical implants restore quality of life to people who have been affected by injury or illness. Researchers all over the world are working on developing new implants that are produced using 3-D printing. This highly-flexible manufacturing technique could massively improve the range and quality of implants that are available.

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Negri Bossi's new owners may 'bring significant manufacturing' to US
Plastics News
Italian plastics equipment major Negri Bossi may "bring significant manufacturing of injection molding machines back to the United States" following its acquisition by a U.S.-based equipment firm. "The new owners have expressed their intention to maintain the current [manufacturing] facilities, especially in Cologno and [Imola, Italy], without any personnel cuts," said Sacmi General Manager Pietro Cassani said during that announcement. "In fact, the emphasis is on growth, which is being driven by the two most promising markets, the U.S. and the U.K."
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Electrically controlled polymer changes its optical properties
R&D Magazine
Electrically controlled glasses with continuously adjustable transparency, new polarization filters and even chemosensors capable of detecting single molecules of specific chemicals could be fabricated thanks to a new polymer unprecedentedly combining optical and electrical properties. An international team of chemists from Italy, Germany and Poland have developed a polymer with unique optical and electrical properties.
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Generation next plastic computers closer to reality
The Economic Times
Scientists have developed a new technique that brings inexpensive computers, cell phones and other systems that substitute flexible plastic for silicon chips one step closer to reality. Researchers at the University of Iowa and colleagues at New York University have made a new proposal for overcoming a major obstacle to the development of such plastic devices, the large amount of energy required to read stored information.
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EMI - New Conveyor & Automation Systems Catalog
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PET market to be worth $60 billion by 2019
Environmental Leader
The global PET packaging market will have grown substantially by 2019, but some manufacturers believe opportunities for lightweighting may have been all but exhausted, according to a report by Smithers Pira. The market will amount to 19.9 million tons and be worth $60 billion by 2019, up from just under 16 million tons and $48.1 billion in 2014, according to The Future of PET Packaging to 2019.
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Trends in the failure of synthetic polymers by Myer
SPE Plastics Engineering
Some trends in failure are due to errors of design or bad judgment ... and some people in plastics have practically no background in plastics science and technology. This may lead to failure due to bad choices in design, processing or material. Some recent examples are given here.
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Despite struggles, Europe still key market in global resin picture
Plastics News
Challenges and opportunities facing international plastics and chemicals markets were tackled by a trio of top executives at the IHS World Petrochemical Conference in Houston. Like the United States, Mexico has large shale gas deposits. Development of these assets could give Mexico "the opportunity to replicate the success of unconventional oil and gas in North America," according to Jose de Jesus Valdez Simancas, president of Mexico City-based petrochemicals firm Alpek SA de CV. Alpek’s assets include DAK Americas, which ranks as one of North America’s largest PET resin makers.
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Canadian manufacturing sales rose 2.6 percent in February
Canadian Plastics
Manufacturing sales rose 2.6 percent to $49.6 billion in February 2014, the largest increase since July 2011, according to Statistics Canada. The agency attributed most of the gain to higher sales in the transportation equipment, petroleum and coal product, food and miscellaneous manufacturing industries.
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    Waste sulfur to produce cheap infrared devices
    Business Standard
    In a breakthrough, scientists have found that sulphur left over from refining fossil fuels can be transformed into cheap, lightweight, plastic lenses for infrared devices, including night-vision goggles. The team led by The University of Arizona successfully took thermal images of a person through a piece of the new plastic. "We have for the first time a polymer material that can be used for quality thermal imaging — and that's a big deal," said senior co-author Jeffrey Pyun, whose lab at the UA developed the plastic.
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    Producers urge booming Brazilian housing market to use EPS
    Plastics News
    Leaders in Brazil's plastics industry are asking lawmakers to mandate the use of expandable polystyrene (the raw material for expanded EPS) in new construction, but say it's an uphill battle despite the energy and construction savings that EPS offers. Annual energy savings with EPS insulation in walls can top 30 percent in Brazil's varied tropical climates. EPS is light, shock-absorbent, resistant to compression and water absorption, and offers an ease of use in construction that leads to project cost reductions of 6 to 8 percent, and average savings of 20 percent in total construction time.
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    Danish project to make polymer solar cells more profitable
    The Daily Fusion
    Project Megawatt intends to make polymer solar cells profitable enough to allow power generation from polymer solar cells to compete on market terms with traditional coal-fired power plants. Advanced market models and a 1,000 m2 (10764 ft2) test facility at DTU Risø Campus at Technical University of Denmark's Department of Energy Conversion and Storage might lift the curse of spot prices from renewable energy. Spot pricing is the price of electricity sold on the commercial market via day-ahead and intraday trading, but invented to allow customers to buy the cheapest energy possible, it is a curse on renewable energy.
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    TRENDING ARTICLES
    Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

        Modified magnesium hydroxide for polyethylene nanocomposites (SPE Plastics Research)
    Self-healing plastics that will repair your car (Zee News)
    New PE capacity to drive prices lower, while PP becomes more competitive (Plastics News)
    3-D printing high-strength carbon composites using PEEK, PAEK (Design News)
    Flexible plastics turn vibrations into electrical energy (The Daily Fusion)

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


    Newlight Technologies raises $9.2 million to make plastic from greenhouse gases
    USA News
    With Newlight Technologies, Mark Herrema is creating plastic out of thin air, actually turning the greenhouse gas methane into low-cost plastic. The company has two production facilities operating in California and is aiming to produce 50 million pounds of plastic this year out of methane released from a dairy farm. Herrema says Newlight is in a position to make methane-primarily based plastic extra effectively than oil-primarily based plastic.
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    EC bag plans will 'weaken' Europe's single market
    Plastics & Rubber Weekly
    The European Commission’s plans to cut consumption of lightweight plastic bags are at odds with the principals of free trade, according to an alliance of trade bodies including PlasticsEurope, the American Chamber of Commerce to the European Union and the Toy Industries of Europe.
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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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