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Biocompatible plastics and their importance in the medical device industry
By Archita Datta Majumdar
Plastics have paved their way into every aspect of human life due to their unique properties of malleability, easily changeable shapes and forms and low cost of production. Significant developments in plastics technology have coincided with the advent of innovative medical devices — pacemakers, stents and hip-replacement devices — which have enabled medical solutions for all kinds of ailments and impairments. Despite their ease of use, plastics can bring the risk of health and environmental hazards that can undermine all medical efforts unless treated minutely at first. Hence, the need for biocompatibility which can reduce these risks and enable us to fully derive the benefits.
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Industry Pulse: What is the biggest advantage of biocompatible plastics in healthcare?

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Modeling post-fatigue behavior of nanocomposite fibers
SPE Plastics Research Online
There is particular interest in incorporating nanosized particles in polymeric materials for improved mechanical performance. These single-filament polymer fibers reinforced with nanofibers have great potential for applications in the automotive, biomedical and civil engineering sectors. However, a detailed and systematic study of their fatigue and fracture behavior is needed before these materials can replace conventional fiber materials.
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Halloysite nanotubes as reinforcing fillers in polymeric nanocomposites
SPE Plastics Research Online
Halloysite is a tubular aluminosilicate with two interesting characteristics: a chemical composition similar to montmorillonite, and a nanotubular geometry similar to carbon nanotubes. Because of these features, its use as a reinforcing filler in polymer nanocomposites has attracted considerable interest in recent years.
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Date Event More Information
March 19-21 Green Polymer Chemistry 2013 Information
March 20-23 SPE GPEC Conference Register
April 22-24 SPE ANTEC 2013 Register
April 30 SPE AutoEPCON Information
May 13-15 Plastics in Medical Devices 2013 Register
July 4-5 SPE Eurotec 2013
Sept. 9-12 SPE Thermoforming 2013 Conference Information
Sept. 11-13 SPE ACCE Information
Sept. 16-18 Plastics Caps & Closures 2013 Register
Oct. 6-9 SPE Auto TPO Information
Oct. 8-10 SPE FlexPackCon 2013 Information
Nov. 6 SPE Automotive Innovation Awards Gala Information

  Free Webinar and a Chance to Win a New Plasma Surface Modification Book

Join Enercon's Rory Wolf as he shares solutions for improving interfacial adhesion & delamination issues with high performance plastics, metals & composites. Webinar Registrants will be entered to win a copy of Rory's new book Atmospheric Pressure Plasma for Surface Modification. Learn more.

New Balance adopts 3-D printing to create hyper-customized track shoes
New Balance is the latest shoe manufacturer to use 3D printers to create footwear for professional athletes, highly customized to their specific needs and — more importantly — their feet.

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California updates container law to encourage recycled content
Plastics News
After more than 18 years on the books, changes to California's rigid plastic packaging container regulations for 2013 mean the law will finally be able to increase the amount of post-consumer recycled material that goes into packaging sold on California stores' shelves.

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Automotive lightweighting with alternative materials
Material substitution replacing heavier iron and steel with weight-saving advanced composites and other plastics, aluminum, magnesium and advanced high-strength steel is essential for boosting vehicle fuel economy.

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Is plastic packaging the 'silent hero' to the global food waste problem?
Plastics Today
It's estimated that 1 in 7 people go to bed hungry each night. But as many companies and individuals work to fight hunger, there's also another issue at hand: food waste. According to a new report, up to 50 percent of food produced around the world each year ends up as waste. Dana Gunders, project scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council, said: "The packaging industry can serve as an inherent part of the solution by offering different packaging sizes, innovative packaging that extends the product's life along with ensuring the recyclability of the packaging."
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Don’t just purge to purge, PURGE TO CLEAN using the original CLEAN PLAST™ purging compound. See the difference a CLEAN PLAST™ PURGE will make.
Nozzles Exceed OEM Tolerances & Quality

EMI stocks several styles of nozzles and tips in popular sizes and machine makes. We can also custom make them to your specifications. MORE

Can fungi replace plastics?
Union College via PhysOrg
Fungi, with the exception of shitake and certain other mushrooms, tend to be something we associate with moldy bread or dank-smelling mildew. But they really deserve more respect. Fungi have fantastic capabilities and can be grown, under certain circumstances, in almost any shape and be totally biodegradable. And, as if this weren't enough, they might have the potential to replace plastics one day. The secret is in the mycelia.
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  • Dow Chemical in deal to enhance performance plastics
    Fox Business
    Dow Chemical has signed a long-term ethylene off-take agreement with a new Japanese joint venture that will allow the chemical producer to enhance its performance plastics franchise. Dow — the world's second-largest chemical producer by revenue — is a large consumer of linear alpha olefins and utilizes them within its Performance Plastics franchise for the production of high-performance materials.
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    These 19 states lead the US manufacturing resurgence
    Area Development Online
    With new advances in technology, lean manufacturing techniques and best practices, American manufacturing is becoming cost-competitive with offshore locations, resulting in more companies bringing their operations back to the United States — or nearshoring to Mexico. We have identified 19 states where manufacturing is leading the way.
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    Plastic film recycling rises to 1 billion pounds annually
    Packaging World
    The recycling of plastic film climbed 4 percent to reach 1 billion pounds annually in 2011 for the first time, according to a recently released report. According to the report, approximately 58 percent of U.S.-recovered postconsumer film was consumed domestically in 2011 — up from 53 percent in 2010 — largely due to growth in the plastic and composite lumber industry, the primary market for this material.
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    New Syntactic Foam Machining Tools

    Reduced machining time and improved plug surface finish/performance may be obtained simply by using cutting tools designed to machine syntactic foam. CMT Materials, Inc. guidelines list and describe these tools, plus provide specific feed/speed rates for optimized machining in any machining center.
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    Servo Ultrasonic Press System

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    PEEK™ Insulated Wire

    Zeus PEEK Insulated Wire (commonly referred to as magnet wire) results from the extrusion of PEEK over copper wire. PEEK Insulated Wire has high continuous operating temperature, excellent abrasion and chemical resistance, and dielectric strength. MORE

    3-D printing holds prosthetic promise for casualties of strife
    USA Today
    Founded in 2011, the Global Entrepreneurship and Maker Space Initiative's goal is to tap the creativity, technical expertise and entrepreneurial drive of young people to solve pressing social problems in their native lands, Bilal Ghalib says. That includes violence-plagued parts of North Africa and the Middle East. Ghalib created a custom prosthetic that he planned to refine using 3-D prototyping technology at the maker space in Baghdad.
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    Manufacturing to outperform GDP growth in 2013, 2014
    Industry group Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation is forecasting that industrial production will increase 2.2 percent in 2013, an increase from 2 percent in the group's December 2012 forecast. In 2014 growth is anticipated to be 3.6 percent.
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    Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

        The renaissance of bioplastics: A not-so-natural process (MultiBriefs)
    Top 5 industry resolutions (Plastics News)
    Plastic-reliant world seeks recycling answers (Waste Management World)
    World 1st: Daimler opts for plastic engine support; replaces aluminum (Plastics Today)
    BASF and top US universities partner for functional materials research (Canadian Plastics)

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

    India may become 5th-largest manufacturing nation
    Qatar News Agency via
    India may become the fifth-largest manufacturing nation — from ninth position at present — if the country is able to increase the share of manufacturing in GDP to 25 percent, a new report said. The National Manufacturing Policy envisages that India's manufacturing sector should increase its share of GDP from 15 percent at present to 25 percent by 2022, in line with global peers.
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    Engineered Thermoplastic Composites

    Complēt® is a "complete" product portfolio of thermoplastic composite materials, where the customers' requirements define the pellet composition. For thermoplastic polymers and continuous reinforcing fibers, Complēt offers the total LFT portfolio.
    MECO® Seals, produce more profit.

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    Levi's now making jeans from recycled plastic
    NBC News
    They don't look like they're made from trash — and that's the whole idea behind Levi's new Waste-Less jeans. The company says at least 20 percent of the material that goes into making this denim comes from recycled plastic bottles and food trays. That means about eight 12- to 20-ounce bottles are reborn in each pair.
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    BASF, Owens Corning, TenCate partner on thermoplastic composites
    Environmental Leader
    Owens Corning, BASF and TenCate Advanced Composites have agreed to work together to develop thermoplastic composites for the mass production of automobiles in an effort to make vehicles lighter and more fuel-efficient. BASF will contribute its knowledge of producing and formulating thermoplastic resins, TenCate Advanced Composites will offer its expertise in composites manufacturing and Owens Corning will share its technology to develop tailor-made fabrics and glass reinforcement products.
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    Injection molder's green upgrades benefit customers and itself
    Plastics Today
    From LED lighting in its office space to variable speed motors on the central chiller and all-electric injection molding machines, PRISM Plastics made energy efficiency a focal point of its new Chesterfield, Mich., operation, to the benefit of its bottom line, and ultimately, its customers as well.
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    Group of scientists argue plastic should be treated as hazardous waste
    Public Radio International
    VideoBrief A group of scientists are suggesting the government declare plastic a hazardous waste in order to generate more funding for the Environmental Protection Agency's clean-up programs. Though more research needs to be done, one ecologist says they already have a strong lead.
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    India's Mahindra e20 electric car clad in plastic body
    Plastics News
    Mahindra Reva Electric Vehicles has launched its long-awaited Mahindra e20, which weighs about 830 kilograms and uses about 80 kilograms of plastic. In addition to the instrument panel, fenders, front and rear bumper, the model is clad in a plastic body.
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    Pillar Technologies

    Pillar Technologies leads the industry in new product development for the packaging, converting and plastic film-printing marketplace. As a division of ITW, our company has access to literally hundreds of products manufactured by over 600 business units within the family. MORE
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