SPE Industry Update
Sept. 14, 2011

A closer look at nanoparticles
Plastics News
VideoBriefParticles too small to be seen with the naked eye are among the most difficult elements to incorporate in medical-device materials. In this video from PN's recent Plastics in Medical Devices conference, Joel Elhard, senior research scientist at the Battelle Memorial Institute in Columbus, Ohio, explains where researchers think nanoparticles are heading in the future.More

Predicting composite surface finish based on dimensional changes in resin
SPE Plastics Research Online
High surface-finish quality, referred to as Class A surface finish, is one of the major requirements in the automotive industry for exterior-body-panel applications. Surface quality control is influenced by many factors, including dimensional changes of the resin, distribution of resin flow, and the surface finish of the mold. Among these, resin dimensional changes contribute most to poor surface finish owing to cure shrinkage and thermal expansion and contraction. To compensate for the high cure shrinkage of unsaturated polyester resins (up to 9 percent), low-profile additives are usually incorporated.More

An impermeable wrap for future electronics
A moisture-resistant coating that extends the lifetime and reliability of plastic electronic devices, such as organic solar cells or flexible displays, has garnered the intense interest of developers of next-generation lighting materials. By cranking out large sheets of polymers bearing electronic circuitry using roll-to-roll technology, electronics manufacturers can substantially reduce their capital and processing costs.More

Partners hope to industrialize production of spider silk
Plastics Today
Spider silk is stronger than steel and tougher than both steel and Kevlar. Scientists postulate that, if used as a reinforcing material in plastic automotive parts, the spider silk's energy absorbing properties maybe great enough so that parts might even regain their shape after an accident.More

Delaware manufacturer touts new resin
The News Journal
A small Newark, Del., manufacturing plant has begun producing custom industrial-grade plastic products from a new form of raw engineering plastic. Quantum Polymers announced this week it recently started making plastic products from Kynar 450 resin, from Arkema Inc.More

Plastic bottles could clean arsenic-contaminated water
Chopped up plastic bottles covered in a common chemical may be a simple and inexpensive method for removing arsenic from drinking water. A team of chemists at Monmouth University found that bits of plastic coated with cysteine, a common molecule found in foods, bind to arsenic.More

Bayer promotes polyurethane's green side
Plastics News
At the UTECH Asia/ PU China show, Bayer MaterialScience AG showcased the many uses of its polyurethanes with a solar-powered plane — a prototype meant less for its practical implementation and more for the point it proves. "If we can make a plane that flies day and night on solar energy, why can't we do that in our daily life?" asked Azita Owlia, senior vice president, Asia Pacific at BMS.More

US PET prices likely to increase in October on MEG, PX cost push
US polyethylene terephthalate (PET) prices were set to go up in September and again in October on a continuing increase in costs, sources said. "We might see another 4-cent/lb increase in October," a PET producer said, "but it depends how PX finishes the month."More

Spiders, Grubbs' and polymer-powered nanomotors
Chemistry World
A chemical spider that spins a polymer thread using a simple catalyst could drive a nanomotor, according to researchers at Pennsylvania State University. Ayusman Sen and colleagues say that these nanomotors have potential applications in the deposition of polymers within the channels of microdevices for instance.More

Template-assisted fabrication for polymer solar cells
Materials Views
Renewable energy sources become more and more important with an ever increasing energy demand. Solar cells based on organic or polymeric semiconductors show great promise to be one of the key technologies in the future. Compared to their inorganic counterparts organic photovoltaic devices provide several advantages, such as low-cost fabrication techniques and the potential for large-area deposition on flexible, light-weight substrates.More

Plastic and paper bag ban proposed for Los Angeles
Los Angeles Times
Paper or plastic? For shoppers in Los Angeles, the choice may soon be neither. Hoping to reduce the billions of grocery bags circulating throughout the city, an L.A. councilman recently called for a sweeping ban on single-use paper and plastic bags.More

Rice for waste plastics program starts in Dagupan
Philippine Information Agency
The 'Bigas Para Plastic' program wherein a person is given a certain amount of rice in exchange for plastic wastes was started here recently by the Rotary Club of Central Pangasinan and the Parents-Teachers Association.More