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Medical breakthrough: Bioengineered heart tissue
By Karen SC Ashley
For patients with heart damage, the best treatment option right now is an organ transplant. But even then, the patient waiting list for an organ donor is seemingly endless. To confound matters, patients can encounter complications after heart transplantation. With new research, the ideal solution — repairing the heart — may soon be possible. To mimic the heart's powerful mechanical action, scientists needed to engineer an artificial cardiac tissue similar in elasticity and biological properties to the native heart. And the breakthrough scientists have long been waiting for has arrived — 3-D-engineered heart tissue that beats.
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SPE HIGHLIGHTS


Rubber-toughened nylon 6 nanocomposites
SPE Plastics Research
Polyamide 6 (PA6) is an important thermoplastic that is widely used in the automotive industry, medicine, and strings for musical instruments. PA6 has excellent strength and stiffness, low friction, and demonstrates chemical resistance. However, it is highly notch sensitive. It is often ductile in the unnotched state, but fails in a brittle manner when notched.
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CALENDAR OF EVENTS

Date Event More Information
June 1-4 Rotational Molding Conference 2014 Information
June 10-11 Decorating and Assembly: New Technology Information
September 8-11 SPE Foams® 2014 Information
September 9-11 14th Annual Automotive Composites Conference Information
September 10-12 Plastics Caps & Closures 2014 Conference Information
September 14-16 23rd CAD RETEC 2014 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
October 1-2 NANOTEC Information
October 5-7 Blow Molding Conference Information
October 5-8 Automotive TPO Conference Information
October 19-22 Flexible Packaging Conference Information
October 20-22 VINYLTEC Information
December 6 Medical Plastics MiniTec Information



PLASTICS INDUSTRY NEWS


Trends favor growth for plastics in medical market
Plastics News
It's no secret that the medical device market is exploding right along with the rest of the global healthcare industry. It's up to a $56 billion-a-year industry in the United States, more than $140 billion worldwide, and aging populations and government initiatives mean the spending will only go up. But with its regulations to navigate and constantly evolving customer demands, medical molding can be a difficult or even intimidating market to break into.
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Engineering polymers play key role in drug-delivery devices
Design News
Manufacturers of drug-delivery devices are developing complex new products utilizing high-performance materials to meet specified design criteria. These criteria are physical and mechanical attributes, functionality, reliability, esthetics and ergonomics, compliance with applicable regulatory standards, and, of course, meeting cost objectives.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  New HYTAC Quick Start Machining Guide
Are you struggling with poor clarity parts or material sticking to your plugs? Is your plug surface rough or fuzzy? Sharp, solid carbide tools and accurate speeds are the secret. Click for a free download of the new HYTAC Quick Start Guide from CMT Materials and let us know what you think.
 



Nanosphere-laced polymer changes color under stress
Photonics
A plastic film that changes color under stress could provide more detailed information in product safety testing and other areas where pressure and strain are measured. A lab at the University of California, Riverside, used a self-assembly method to string together gold nanoparticles embedded in a polymer film. The system takes advantage of the plasmonic shift that results when nanoparticle chains are pulled apart.
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European plastics recyclers seek to boost PET recycling
Recycling Today
The European plastics association, Plastics Recycling Europe, is working to develop recycling guidelines that are specifically designed for handling PET trays. In a press release, the association says that while in the past PET trays were designed to make them difficult to recycle, more recent attempts are being taken to improve the recycling of the materials.
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FEATURED ARTICLE
TRENDING ARTICLE
MOST POPULAR ARTICLE
Medical breakthrough: Bioengineered heart tissue
By Karen SC Ashley
For patients with heart damage, the best treatment option right now is an organ transplant. But even then, the patient waiting list for an organ donor is seemingly endless. To confound matters, patients can encounter complications after heart transplantation. With new research, the ideal solution — repairing the heart — may soon be possible. To mimic the heart's powerful mechanical action, scientists needed to engineer an artificial cardiac tissue similar in elasticity and biological properties to the native heart. And the breakthrough scientists have long been waiting for has arrived — 3-D-engineered heart tissue that beats.

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Has US oil consumption decreased because of peak oil?
By Stefanie Heerwig
U.S. oil consumption has declined by more than 20 percent, giving peak-oil theorists their confirmation — world crude oil production is decreasing. And no matter how much U.S. production increases, everyone will feel the squeeze in the face of rising international oil prices. It is really hard to argue against this. After all, rising oil prices and decreasing consumption could be easily explained by one of the core peak-oil theories: the export-land model. So is this truly the end of oil?

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Market and technology trends driving wind energy forward
By Don Rosato
Oil and natural gas prices and environmental forces are all key wind energy drivers. But the fact that wind energy has the highest rate of return among the various sources of alternative energy is attracting new "players" into the energy sector. Within the global wind power arena, the wind turbine industry has become one of the world's largest markets for plastic composites. The total installed wind capacity was expected to reach 318 GW by the end of 2013, enough to provide almost 4 percent of the global electricity demand.

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Dell to use closed loop recycled plastics and carbon negative aircarbon packaging
Waste Management World
Round Rock, Texas-based computer manufacturer Dell has launched two new sustainability initiatives including the use of closed loop recycled plastics in its PCs and a carbon negative plastic packaging. The company claimed to be first in the IT industry to introduce carbon-negative packaging, through a partnership with Newlight Technologies, inventor and manufacturer of AirCarbon.
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Vietnam plastics industry to see strong growth
Vietnam Briefing
Over the past two years, plastics companies have been disappointed by the slowing Vietnamese economy. But now, due to global companies looking for cheaper alternatives to China, the economy is showing strong signs of bouncing back.
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  FEATURED COMPANIES
Precision Protection for Critical Components
Zeus Heat Shrink offers a superior “shrink to fit” layer of protection to insulate wiring, fiber optics and other components from the world’s harshest environments. MORE
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We specialize in custom conveying applications. Our 2014 catalog includes new conveyor models and molded parts handling systems. View our online catalog today! MORE



Here's a surprising look at how nanotechnology could reengineer our bodies
PolicyMic
Nanotechnology could change human biology forever. From prosthetic limbs and new burn treatments, to cancer detection and bones that heal in days or weeks, nanotech could be the future of medicine. According to nanomedical expert Frank Boehm, "[t]he ability to work at this scale will allow for the fabrication of unique materials and devices with improved and novel properties, such as enhanced water repellency (superhydrophobicity) or the increased performance of chemical reactions (catalysis) due to dramatically increased active surface areas."
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  PRODUCT SHOWCASES
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iQ Series Servo Ultrasonic Press System

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Ultrasonic Welding Machine

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



Extruded, hollow tube could help soldiers wounded on battlefield
Plastics News
Researchers in Akron, Ohio, are developing an extruded tube that one day could help repair the legs of soldiers injured by roadside bombs, University of Akron professor Matthew Becker said at the Plastics in Medical Devices conference. The hollow, degradable device, designed for healing a femur bone, is made of amino acid-based poly(ester urea).
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China's plastics recycling rate reaches 30 percent
Recycling International
China has seen growth in domestic collection and utilization of plastic scrap, according to Ning Hongtao, president of the plastics recycling committee of the China Plastics Processing Industry Association. Speaking at the Chinaplas 2014 expo held recently in Shanghai, Hongtao also suggested that the drop in imported plastics scrap resulting from last year's Green Fence initiative – figured at 1 million tons – "was not as big as forecasted."
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  FEATURED COMPANIES
Hanser Publications
Premier Plastics Technology Books

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MECO® split, mechanical, shaft sealing.
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Audi to focus on buying in North America
European Plastics News
Suppliers of Audi's first assembly complex in North America will buy most of their raw materials from within the region, according to the German auto maker. "90 percent of our raw materials, including plastics resins, will come from NAFTA [countries]," Bernd Martens, an Audi board member in charge of the company's procurement, told reporters.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
 
Top Honor in Plastics Industry

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Application of polymer may reduce vehicle weight by up to 25 kg
The Economic Times
Application of polymer composites vis-a-vis metals with process relevance have the scope for weight reduction by as much as 20-25 kg/vehicle while the Indian composite industry is pegged at Rs 15,000 crore with an expected growth of 15 percent per annum over the next four years, experts observed during National Conference on Polymer Composites & New Age Materials organized by the Auto Components Manufacturers Association of India.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Surface-modified calcium fluoride in poly(ethylene terephthalate) (SPE Plastics Research)
Properties of mono- and multilayer PA6/clay and MXD6/clay films (SPE Plastics Research)
New thermoset plastics simple to recycle (Chemistry World)
2 different polymers used to imitate biological lubrication (AZoM)
Report: Skills shortage threatens future earnings and growth prospects of US manufacturers (The Wall Street Journal)

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


Metal additive manufacturing grows by nearly 76 percent
Plastics Today
Additive manufacturing systems for metal parts are increasing in popularity, according to Wohlers Report 2014. The 19th annual edition, published recently, includes an in-depth review and analysis of additive manufacturing and 3-D printing – terms that are used interchangeably. The worldwide study includes industry growth, competitive products and services and a futuristic view on an industry that is creating unprecedented interest and excitement.
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4-D printing to allow for shape-changing dress materials
The Economic Times
Scientists are developing 4-D printing technology to pave way for "smart" materials that can change shape by themselves. Researchers are combining different types of plastics and fibers to create "smart" materials that change shape when they come into contact with stimuli such as heat or water. Objects designed in this way can expand, fold or unfurl into predesigned forms after being printed, in a process dubbed 4-D printing, The Times reported.
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  FEATURED COMPANIES
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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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