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Global Medical Plastics Device Trends Keep Expanding
By Don Rosato
The medical device industry is making important contributions to advances in healthcare. The sector is characterized by a high level of innovation and intense competition. One of the interesting aspects of research and development within the medical devices field is the coupling of diverse biomedical and engineering disciplines. The medical devices industry involves the input of companies within the plastics and other advanced materials fields as well as microelectronics, software, telecommunications and biopharmaceutical, as outlined by the Advanced Medical Technology Association.
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Autoclaved Aerated Concrete Waste Composites as a Filler for Natural Rubber
SPE Plastics Research Online
Natural rubber (NR) is noted for its versatility as an elastomeric material. However, it is often necessary to use fillers to improve its processability and mechanical strength and to reduce costs. Autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC) is a cement or lime mortar closed foam including microscopic air bubbles of very low density. It is made by aerating concrete and then autoclaving it under pressure.
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Date Event More Information
January 14 Single-Screw Extruder Analysis and Troubleshooting Information
February 22-25 2015 SPE International Polyolefins Conference Information
February 23-25 SPE ACE Conference 2015 Information
March 23-25 ANTEC Orlando at NPE2015 Information
May 5 Auto EPCON 2015 Information
May 14 Extrusion Minitech Information


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  • A Look Ahead: State Chemical Initiatives in 2015
    Plastics Engineering
    The 2014 legislative session was challenging, as states debated the merits of banning chemicals in consumer products — especially products used by children. While Congress continued its good faith effort to reform the federal Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), it was not enough to hold back state legislatures from attempting reform within their own borders. From Oregon to Vermont, state legislators took on the issue and were met with some success.
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    Bubbles Add Some Flair to 'Plain Jane' PET Bottles
    Plastics News
    Ron Puvak and the folks over at Plastic Technologies Inc., see big things coming from some very tiny bubbles. The Holland, Ohio-based company is touting a technology called Fi-Cell that dramatically alters the appearance of PET bottles in a way the company believes opens up new markets for the packaging stalwart.
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      Paul N. Gardner Company, Incorporated

    Distributors, producers and designers of physical testing instruments for the paint, coating and related industries, such as automotive, aerospace, specialty chemical, petroleum, plastics, pharmaceutical and food. We provide quality control instruments used in laboratory and field for testing and measurement.

    2015: Americans Commit to Greening in the New Year, Poll Says
    Plastics Today
    If New Year's resolutions are anything to go by, 2015 promises to be the year in which concern for the environment well and truly penetrates the mainstream consciousness. According to the results of a nationwide public opinion poll released by Tiller, LLC, a leading advocacy marketing consultancy, 60 percent, or in other words, three in five Americans said they would make a New Year's resolution to live a "greener" or more environmentally friendly lifestyle in 2015 - a significant increase from previous iterations of the survey (53 percent in 2009 and 49 percent in 2007). Moreover, better than eight in 10 Americans (83 percent) said they planned to look for more opportunities to "go green" in 2015.
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    New Green Technique Recycles all Plastics Without Using Water
    Conventional plastic recycling techniques use large quantities water. In order to avoid this waste, Marco Adame founder of Ak Inovex, has recently developed a new green technology which does not require the use of liquids. This new technique can process a wide range of materials such as Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polystyrene and styrofoam using the same types customizable machinery which are currently used in industry.
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    Water Content by Karl Fischer

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    Exchangeable Cables for Easy Maintenance

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    Study: Impact of Manufacturing Reshoring 'Less than Hype' Indicates
    Plastics News
    While reshoring of manufacturing from low-cost Asian countries has given a boost to U.S. manufacturers, it may be as much hype as reality, as imports from the region are still growing faster than U.S. production, a new study finds. The study from management consultants A.T. Kearney noted that U.S. manufacturing production grew 6 percent a year from 2009 to 2013. But it also said that imported manufactured goods from Asia grew even faster, at 8 percent a year, during the same time frame.
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    US Manufacturing Lost Momentum in December
    Business Insider
    Manufacturing activity lost momentum in December. Markit's manufacturing PMI came in at 53.9, missing expectations for 54.0 but topping the flash reading of 53.7 earlier in December. This is down from November's reading of 54.8. In addition to Markit's report, the Institute for Supply Management's latest manufacturing PMI also decline from November, coming in at 55.5 against 58.7 last month.
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    3-D Printer on International Space Station Prints a Ratchet Wrench
    "For the printer's final test in this phase of operations, NASA wanted to validate the process for printing on demand, which will be critical on longer journeys to Mars," explained Niki Werkheiser, the space station 3-D printer program manager at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. "In less than a week, the ratchet was designed, approved by safety and other NASA reviewers, and the file was sent to space where the printer made the wrench in four hours."
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    Design a Better Injection Molded Part
    Canadian Plastics
    Think it's tough to put together a decent jacket-shirt-tie combo in the morning? Try mastering the complexities of designing an injection molded appearance part for production runs in the hundreds of thousands. It's as difficult as it sounds. "Small details in part design can prove to have a huge influence over the lifetime of the production phase, and can make the difference between a part that runs trouble-free and a 'problem child' that needs constant adjustment and repair," said Kip Doyle, president of
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    California Plastic Bag Ban Could Be Delayed Until Fall 2016
    Triple Pundit
    California Senate Bill 270, passed by the state legislature and signed into law in September, would ban many retail stores from dispensing single-use plastic bags as of July 1, 2015. But in another example of a special interest perverting democracy when it does not get its way, the Plastics Industry Trade Association (SPI) has announced it has collected over 800,000 signatures to qualify for a statewide up-or-down vote in November 2016. Once that tally is confirmed, the July ban would be postponed until the following year.
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    Fast Heat's NEW CableXChecker™ Hot Runner Cable Testing System Ensures Proper Connectivity

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    An FDA Perspective on the Use of 3-D Printing in Medical Applications
    Plastics Today
    A dedicated follower of 3-D printing in the medical space, Steven K. Pollack, Ph.D., Director of the Office of Science and Engineering Labs at FDA, will participate in a panel discussion on 3-D printing at the February MD&M West exhibition and conference. In addition to the regulatory issues surrounding 3-D printing, industry experts, researchers, and academics will discuss material developments, functional prototyping, bioprinting, and IP concerns during the daylong conference. In advance of the session, which is scheduled for Feb. 10 at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California, Pollack agreed to answer some questions related to FDA's perspective on 3-D printing.
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    Plant Genetic Advance Could Lead to More Efficient Biofuel Conversion
    R&D Magazine
    Plant geneticists including Sam Hazen at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and Siobhan Brady at the University of California, Davis, have sorted out the gene regulatory networks that control cell wall thickening by the synthesis of the three polymers, cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin. The authors say that the most rigid of the polymers, lignin, represents "a major impediment" to extracting sugars from plant biomass that can be used to make biofuels.
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    Color and Appearance Control for Plastics

    The Datacolor 45G, 45/0 handheld spectrophotometer with class leading repeatability, provides simultaneous control of both color appearance and gloss for plastics.
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    Injection Molders to Enjoy Cheap Resin Prices in 2015
    If you're molding, blowing or extruding commodity thermoplastics, 2015 is shaping up to be a very good year for resin pricing. Everyone from toy manufacturers to Tier One OEM's is expected to enjoy ample supply and lower pricing of important thermoplastics like polyethylene this year. Oil pricing, as always, is the key to resin cost. This graph, based on crude oil pricing projections from the US Energy Information Administration, suggests a shallow bottoming of oil pricing in the $70-$80 a barrel range through 2016. From a resin feedstock perspective, much depends on the ability of new producers in the shale oil and fracking space to produce in a sub-$100 a barrel world.
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    US manufacturing growth slows in December
    Growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector slowed for the second straight month in December, partly due to falling crude prices and the labor slowdown at West Coast ports. The Institute for Supply Management reported on Friday, Jan. 2 that its purchasing managers index for the sector fell to 55.5 last month from 58.7 in November. The PMI remained above where it started in 2014, at 51.3. Anything above 50 denotes growth. December survey respondents said growth in new orders and production slowed and inventories contracted during the month, though hiring picked up.
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    Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

        Study on Ocean Plastics Turns Up Some Surprises (Plastics News)
    Energy-Saving, High-Tech Plastics Applications in Green Building (By Don Rosato)
    Top 5 Trends for Plastic Manufacturers in 2015 (
    Mazda Co-Develops Bio-Based Engineering Plastic; No Painting Required for Exterior Vehicle Parts (Plastics Today)
    Feather-Inspired Strong, Light Layered Composites (SPE Plastics Research Online)

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    Seal Cut - High Quality and Versatility
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    SPE Industry Update
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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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