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How the US oil, gas boom could shake up global order
NBC News
VideoBrief Without fanfare, China passed the United States in December to become the world's leading importer of oil — the first time in nearly 40 years that the U.S. didn’t own that dubious distinction. A dramatic shift is occurring in how energy is being produced and consumed around the world — one that could lead to far-reaching changes in the geopolitical order. But many experts say the U.S. would be the big winner, in position to reshape its foreign policy and boost its global influence.
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Advance registration for SPE ANTEC® 2013 closes April 12
There is still time to register for the Society of Plastics Engineers ANTEC® 2013 to save $155 from the on-site pricing. ANTEC® 2013 will take place April 22-24 at the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. Over 500 technical papers will be presented; four industry experts will speak in plenary sessions; special New Technology and Fundamentals Forums will be held; and the exhibit floor will feature a wide variety of companies. A series of seminars will be offered, and SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association will offer their Business of Plastics Conference, focusing on current issues affecting business strategy.

Don't miss out on ANTEC this year! Register today by clicking here.

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For SPE Members Only: Key Employment Trends in Plastics and Packaging
SPE members will soon have access to updated, comprehensive trend information on compensation, benefits, job security and satisfaction in the plastics industry. For the 7th consecutive year, SPE is partnering with Gros Executive Recruiters on the company's annual salary survey, which provides data on salary trends and hiring affecting employees in the plastics industry. The survey is open now through May 5, and if you are an SPE member, you are invited to participate. Want to know how your salary compares with others? This survey will tell you. Are benefits going up, holding steady or declining? You can find out just by participating. The survey allows you to remain anonymous. Your individual information is confidential, and only the compiled findings will be published. All survey participants will be provided with a peek at the current results, and SPE members will receive the added benefit of having full access to the survey results when compiled.

To participate in the Annual Salary Survey, please go to

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  Stoner Mold Cleaners & Release Agents

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Making an impact with nanocomposites
SPE Plastics Research Online
Polymer nanocomposites are new materials that show great potential in a variety of applications. By incorporating nanoscale particles of a filler material, the performance and properties of the bulk material can be drastically altered. Indeed, quite exceptional improvements can be achieved with small amounts of filler.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword NANOCOMPOSITES.


Date Event More Information
April 22-24 SPE ANTEC 2013 Register
April 30 SPE AutoEPCON Register
May 13-15 Plastics in Medical Devices 2013 Register
June 4-5 Workforce Solutions West 2013 Register
July 4-5 SPE Eurotec 2013
Sept. 9-12 SPE Thermoforming 2013 Conference Information
Sept. 11-13 SPE ACCE Register
Sept. 17-18 Plastics Caps & Closures 2013 Register
Oct. 6-9 SPE Auto TPO Register
Oct. 8-10 SPE FlexPackCon 2013 Register
Nov. 6 SPE Automotive Innovation Awards Gala Information
Nov. 12-14 Plastics In Building Innovation Information

Milacron completes Mold-Masters purchase
Canadian Plastics
Plastics technology business Milacron has completed its acquisition of Canadian hot runner specialist Mold-Masters. Under the terms of the transaction, Milacron acquired 100 percent of the shares of Mold-Masters.

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Biocompatible plastics and their importance in the medical device industry
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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6-meter tall KamerMaker to 3-D print Amsterdam house by year's end
Amsterdam-based DUS Architects is the latest company to show its hand, and has developed its own 3-D printer, the 6-meter tall KamerMaker — literally, RoomMaker — with the intention of 3-D printing a house before the end of the year.

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The rise of 'Small Oil'
By Zara Rahman
Much has been discussed about how the prominence of Big Oil has, in recent years, given way to the rise of state-owned oil companies, which now hold approximately 70 percent of the world's oil reserves. But given the gargantuan size of the world's oil industry, even companies claiming just a fraction of those reserves can be making millions. Does the future of the oil industry lie in these "Small Oil" companies?
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Industry Pulse: Is the rise of 'Small Oil' good for the industry?

Last week's survey: What is the biggest advantage of biocompatible plastics in healthcare?


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In-mold internal welding targets medical counterfeiters
Plastics Today
The rapid emergence of electronic identification systems to prevent medical counterfeiting will get a boost from a new internal welding process supplied by Wittmann Battenfeld. Called IMIW for in-mold internal welding, it is now possible to insert mold parts with a gas- and waterproof-protective barrier for sensitive electronic components. Molded parts are joined together by injection molding the connection between the contact surfaces with the same plastic material from the inside.
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High-tech manufacturing and location, location, location
In Silicon Valley, a lot of focus is on the "coolness" of product design and the development of complex, high-tech hardware. But to really succeed in the marketplace, manufacturing is critical. After all, someone's got to make all that cool stuff work. There are plenty of specialty contract manufacturers right here at home, where your intellectual property is protected and you can find a wealth of expertise in highly regulated areas such as medical devices, biotech equipment and defense.
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  • North American PVC prices up, but polypropylene drops
    Plastics News
    If you were a North American resin buyer buying both PVC and polypropylene resin in March, you might be wearing a neck brace right now. That's because PVC prices in the region jumped up a nickel per pound, while PP prices slid by an average of 6 cents. Whiplash was a definite possibility.
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    19-year-old develops ocean cleanup array that could remove 7.25 million tons of plastic from the oceans
    19-year-old Boyan Slat has unveiled plans to create an ocean cleanup array that could remove 7,250,000 tons of plastic waste from the world's oceans. The device consists of an anchored network of floating booms and processing platforms that could be dispatched to garbage patches around the world. Instead of moving through the ocean, the array would span the radius of a garbage patch, acting as a giant funnel.
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    Women missing out on manufacturing gains
    The Wall Street Journal
    American factories are hiring again. But they aren't hiring women. U.S. factories have added more than half a million workers in the past three years, with most of the gains coming in the durable-goods sector, which makes longer-lasting items like cars and dishwashers. Women, however, haven't seen the same gains. Female employment in the manufacturing sector has actually fallen by 13,000 in the past three years.
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    Pepsi tries new look with first package redesign since 1997
    Advertising Age via Plastics News
    PepsiCo Inc. will introduce a new bottle shape for the first time in 16 years. The brand's 16 oz. and 20 oz. plastic bottles will feature a swirled grip on the bottom portion of the bottle, with a shorter label edged in a "cola-colored" border and showing an enlarged version of its existing globe logo. A 12 oz. glass bottle, which will be available in select retailers, features the same twisted shape as well as the globe logo ringed in a thick silver line.
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    A mold change in less than 10 minutes...

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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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    How a 3-D printer gave a man his face — and his life — back
    The Sydney Morning Herald
    As Eric Moger started to make plans for his wedding to Karen Hunger four years ago, doctors discovered an aggressive tumor the size of a tennis ball growing beneath the skin of his face. Now, after years of having people stare and recoil at his disfigurement, surgeons have employed cutting edge three-dimensional printing technology to create a prosthetic face for Moger in what is thought to be the first procedure of its kind in Britain.
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    Is the US manufacturing renaissance real?
    U.S. manufacturing is back. That's been the conventional economic wisdom now for several months, and there's plenty of proof to back it up — rising factory output, strong manufacturing production gains, and lower labor costs that make American workers more attractive. But at least one economic seer, Goldman Sachs' chief economist Jan Hatzius, is throwing a bit of cold water on the idea.
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    Should plastic manufacturers be held responsible for plastic pollution?
    VideoBrief What should corporate responsibility should look like for the plastics and packaging industry. Given the overwhelming amount of plastics that end up in the environment, what responsibility do the manufacturers of disposable plastic and packaging products have for limiting and cleaning up this waste? Do we need more legislation to hold corporations responsible? And who's really making the decisions in this industry?
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    Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

        Welcome to the 'jobless' US manufacturing boom (The Fiscal Times)
    Automotive lightweighting process technologies to watch (MultiBriefs)
    Enhancing polyamide properties with alumina whiskers (SPE Plastics Research Online)
    5 ways to boost quality in manufacturing operations (IndustryWeek)
    Paint-on plastic electronics to bring down cost (Discovery News)

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

    How to recognize the plastics that are hazardous to your health
    The chemicals contained in plastics can be quite harmful. But given that "plastic" can mean a wide variety of substances, it's difficult to know which ones are bad for us. Here's everything you need to know about plastic and its impact on your health.
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    Engineered Thermoplastic Composites

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    America's new sustainable manufacturing hubs will breed creativity, jobs
    Fast Co.Exist
    The aim of these hubs is to put smart, entrepreneurial people together with advanced manufacturing technology to come up with applications for that technology. Those applications will reduce waste in manufacturing processes, which will mean that U.S. manufacturers can charge less for their services. With new technology comes the need for newly skilled workers to wield it properly. So it's a smart growth strategy: reduce the bottom line, increase profit and reinvest it in the company's growth.
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    South African inventor wages war on plastic waste
    Popular Mechanics
    Convert waste plastics and old tires into a variety of fuels to power our modern lifestyles? You'd better believe it. This game-changing process — brainchild of South African inventor William Graham — finally gives us the tools to wage war on non-degradable waste and win.
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    Exopack and Kobusch to offer modified atmosphere packaging
    Plastics News
    Two flexible packaging converters, Exopack and Kobusch, have struck an agreement with PerfoTec BV to offer packaging technology that improves the shelf life of produce. PerfoTec, a developer of modified atmosphere packaging technology, says it has developed a system that can extend shelf life and reduce product spoilage.
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    Google Glass to be 'made in USA'
    The Financial Times
    Google will manufacture Project Glass, its futuristic digital eyewear, in Silicon Valley, in a high-profile example of the return of electronics manufacturing to the U.S. High quality global journalism requires investment. The decision to manufacture in California will boost President Barack Obama's drive, set out in his State of the Union address, to ensure "the next revolution in manufacturing is 'Made in America.'"
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