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February 2015

Close-Up on Technology

‘Passive Variotherm’ Cooling Cuts Cycle Time at Low Cost
A hot/cold molding technique lets the injected melt do the heating while water flow is paused.

Detect When Equipment Needs Maintenance—Before It’s Too Late
New technology to debut next month at NPE warns when preventive maintenance is needed, before equipment failure disrupts production.

Processor's Edge

Molder’s Mantra: Go Lean, Stay Green
All-electric presses combined with home-built technologies and energy-efficient initiatives at PMT.

Know How

BLOW MOLDING: Single- or Two-Stage PET Bottle Making: Get to Know Your Options
The decision which process to use can be quite complex. Here are pointers that will help you to choose the right one for your application

EXTRUSION: Avoid General ‘Pump Ratios’ On Two-Stage Screws
Instead, rely on basic data and calculations to determine the proper depth of the first and second metering sections

INJECTION: First to Second Stage Transfer: Should There Be ‘Bounce-Back’?
How much screw ‘jumping’ or bounce-back can your process tolerate? The answer is no surprise: It depends

MATERIALS: Analysis Gone Wrong
A lot of resources are devoted each year to trying to figure out why products fail. Sometimes it’s because no one involved in a project realizes the data provided was wrong.

TOOLING: Ejectors: Watch That ‘Unsupported Length’
It may be an unfamiliar term, but it’s the key to preventing ejector-pin deflection and breakage

Starting Up

Akcros Invests In Safe, High-Quality Biocides
The start-up of manufacturing of pelletized isothiazalone-based biocides is underway at Akcros's New Brunswick facility.

Conair Lab Devoted to Pipe, Profile, Tubing Extrusion
New lab can develop and test complete extrusion systems for precision medical tubing to siding.

Machinery Innovator Dewey Rainville Dies at 91
Developed numerous technologies in blow molding; involved in start-ups of leading auxiliary equipment firms.

Metabolix To Significantly Boost PHA Production
Plans are underway at Metabolix to increase output of PHA biopolymers.

Novel Package Nabs Another Award
Third time Clear-Lam's PrimaPak has been acknowledged.

NPE2015 Adds Two More Events to Expanding Conference Slate
A breakfast briefing on key markets and plastics design panel discussions, which are free to attendees, join four multi-day, paid conferences on a range of technical and business topics at NPE2015.

Reedy International Gets New Name
Along with new headquarters, Reedy International has the new name of Reedy Chemical Foam & Specialty Additives.

RheTech Agrees To Acquisition By Hexpol
Sweden's Hexpol is acquiring Michigan's compounder RheTech.

SPI Launches Sustainability Benchmarking, 'Zero Waste Zone' at NPE2015
SPI is surveying members on sustainability practices to provide guidance for companies to improve their own practices. A Zero Waste Zone at NPE will highlight sustainable practices.

Wellman Plastics Recycling Part Of Shanghai Prett Composites
Wellman Plastics Recycling is being acquired by automotive plastics compounder Shanghai Pret Composites.

Processor's Business Index

Solid Growth Continues
Compared with a year ago, the index increased 8.4% in December, which was also the fastest month-over-month growth since August.


Coextruding Blown Film Today Requires Deeper Understanding of Resin Rheology & Die Design
More film processors are investing in lines with nine or more layers. With more resin possibilities and combinations coming into play, it’s important to learn more about material rheology and compatibility, as well as die design.

Energy-Efficient Granulating
Granulators are notorious energy hogs, but motors and designs have improved energy efficiency over the years. Proper selection and maintenance can also do a lot to avoid wasted energy cost.

Five Steps Toward Better Plug Assists
With careful planning and adherence to best practices, crafting the right plug assist can put you on the path to high-quality, repeatable parts.

Know Your Options in Injection Machine Nozzles
Improvements in nozzle design in recent years overcome some of the limitations of previous filter, mixing, and shut-off nozzles.

Micromolding Gets Bigger at Tessy Plastics
Micro parts are a tiny but fast-growing segment of its custom molding business, with potential to expand beyond the medical sector.

Robot End-of-Arm Tooling: A Small Way to Make a Big Difference
Often overlooked as a small part of an automation system, clever end-of-arm tooling techniques and designs can improve part quality, heighten efficiency, and eliminate headaches for any molder.

Keeping Up With Technology

AUXILIARIES: Compact Dust & Fine Removal System
Size Reduction Specialists to showcase innovative compact dust and fine removal systems.

BLENDING: Vibratory Feeders Give Blender Greater Accuracy
Comes with a color touchscreen control and can be equipped with an integral weighed downcomer for extrusion control.

COMPOUNDING: Unit Combines Drying, Cooling and Classifying
Targets applications requiring one, two, or all three of its functions—drying, cooling or classifying of extruded pellets

DECORATING: Plasma Device For Plastics Lightweighting Projects
Plasmatreat will feature a new plasma device at NPE 2015 specifically for treating plastic substrates used in lightweighting projects.

DECORATING: Two Integrated Technologies In One Pad Printing Automation
The newest compact pad printer from Tampoprint, to debut at NPE 2015, combines pad and laser printing in one automated unit.

DRYING: New Tower Design Increases Dryer Efficiency
Novel parabolic tower design, unique heater configuration, and optimized airflow are said to maximize efficiency.

EXTRUSION: Simple, Economical Temperature Controller
Easy to operate unit is a time saver, offers flexibililty.

EXTRUSION: Twin-Screw Extruder In ‘Direct to Sheet’ Set Up
System combines compounding and sheet processing in one step.

EXTRUSION: ‘Next Generation’ Gravimetric Extrusion Control System
Technology developed to maintain consistent extruder output by weight.

EXTRUSION: ‘Universal’ Winder for Geomembrane, Ag Films
Center-turret type has two winding modes.

EXTRUSION: First Four-Axis, 12-mm Diameter And Ovality Gauge for Tubing
Touts higher accuracy than two- and three axis gauges.

EXTRUSION: Specialty Film Solutions Highlighted at NPE
Included are systems for solar and capacitor films.

INJECTION MOLDING: All-Electric Press for Thicker Parts
New version provides longer and higher pack/hold pressures.

INJECTION MOLDING: Cycle-Slashing Plasticating System
Barrier screw plus poppet-style non-return valve provide faster cycles without resin degradation.

INJECTION MOLDING: Magnetic Clamps Gain Added Safety Features
System monitors magnetic flux at each pole on the platen.

INJECTION MOLDING: Multilayer Barrier System To Debut at NPE
Three-layer coinjection system for PET preforms saves on expensive barrier material.

INJECTION MOLDING: Multi-Tip Hot-Runner Nozzles For Tubular Parts
Designed for balanced filling without core bending.

INJECTION MOLDING: New Cavity Sensors & Controls
Sensors with replaceable cables and a new CoMo DataCenter for multi-machine monitoring.

INJECTION MOLDING: New High-Speed Hybrid Machine And Novel Robot at NPE
Look for everything from automotive hybrid composites to medical in-mold assembly.

INJECTION MOLDING: New Machine & Controls from Taiwan
Energy-saving hydraulic machines and large touchscreen control.

INJECTION MOLDING: Servo-Hydraulic Two-Platen Presses Debut in North America
Smaller servo-hydraulic models and wide-platen options will be unveiled at NPE.

INJECTION MOLDING: Six Wittmann Molding Cells And New Robots in Orlando
From micromolding to 650-ton presses will be operating with robots, IML, LSR, Varioutherm, foam, and two-shot molding.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Automatically Fill Hoppers Using Logic Controller
Logic controller automatically controls pump to refill hoppers.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Capacitive Level Sensors
Detects product level and ignores dust build-up.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Drying, Cooling and Classifying Combined
Multi-functional unit dries, cools and classifies resin all in one machine.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Gravimetric Stand Enhances Liquid Color Use
Riverdale Global will showcase its new Riverdale Gravimetric Stand for liquid color metering at NPE 2015.

MATERIALS HANDLING: High-Intensity Separation Conveyor Removes Metal Chips
Conveyor removes small work-hardened 300 stainless steel and paramagnetic chips from shredded and ground plastic.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Hose Loads Materials, Dissipates Static
Hose dissipates static charge in extremely high-static material-transfer applications.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Modular Loader Design Allows Customization, Optimization
Material loader’s modular design allows users to configure the optimal setup for any application.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Two Options for Trapping Angel Hair
Square traps and inline traps are available.

MATERIALS HANDLING: Variety of Parts Handling, Conveying Tech Coming to NPE
Vertical conveyors, inline box filling, and tumbler separators on tap.

MATERIALS: Custom Capstocks Meet Diverse Color, Weathering Needs
With its recent acquisition of Viking Polymers, Teknor will showcase a range of capstocks for outdoor rigid profiles at NPE 2015.

MATERIALS: Fine-Ground Cellulosic Filler Used in Renewable Compounds
Microscopic cellulose particles enhance properties and renewable content.

MATERIALS: LCP Meets Stringent Demands Of Gigabyte Connectors
Solvay's new LCP resin meets stringent demands of high-speed USB 3.0 surface mount connectors.

MATERIALS: Specialty Fluoropolymer Compounds For Broad Range Of Uses
AGC Chemicals will feature some of its new high-performance fluoropolymer compounds at NPE 2015.

MATERIALS: Thermosetting Molding Compound Boasts High-Temperature Creep Resistance
Unusual thermosetting dry-type polyester compound offered here by Mitsubishi Gas Chemical.

MATERIALS: Versatile TPEs For Personal Electronic Devices
Teknor Apex will showcase a new series of TPEs for colorful, touch-friendly personal electronic components at NPE 2015.

PROCESS COOLING: Water Temperature Control Adds Electric Control Valves
Water temperature control system adds electric control valves for automatic closed loop operation.

PULTRUSION: Preheater Speeds Up Production Rates
Preheater speeds up pultrusion of thick shapes by three to five times.

RECYCLING/SCRAP RECLAIM: High-Performance In-Line Thermoforming Scrap Recovery
TRIA America to debut 'quiet' high-performance grinders dedicated to in-line thermoforming scrap recovery at NPE 2015.

RECYCLING/SCRAP RECLAIM: Shredders with VFD Inverter Drives
Variable-speed drives sense tramp metal and match rotor speed and torque to the load.

RECYCLING: Shredder Ideal for Hard Plastic Scrap, And More
At NPE 2015, WEIMA America will have on hand its latest shredders that handle a variety of types of plastic waste.

RECYCLING: Wet Grinder Washes Away Paper Labels
At NPE 2015, Zimmer America will feature new STF Group's wet grinder that can dissolve around 95% of paper labels during shredding.

ROBOTS: Self-Guided, ‘Humanoid’ Robot Varieties Proliferate
Two-armed robots with vision and other sensors now come with expressive 'faces.'

SIZE REDUCTION: Grinder Handles Bulky Parts Including Blow Molded Containers
Grinder takes on large, bulky parts while minimizing fly back.

TESTING: Advanced Video Extensometer Meets Rigorous Test Standards
Instron will debut its new advanced video extensometer for strain measurement at NPE 2015.

TESTING: Haze & Transmittance Meter Measures Haze And Clarity
Gardco has a new testing instrument that simultaneously measures haze and clarity.

THERMOFORMING: Faster, ‘Greener’ & More Compact Machine at Fakuma Show
All-servo-driven former saves energy.

TOOLING: Novel Air Poppet Valve Resists High Pressures
Poppet valve for parts removal from injection molds keeps parts from sticking.

WELDING: Functional Integration Demonstration
Herrmann UItrasonics will showcase live demonstrations of the welding process by interlinking of several production steps.

WELDING: Optional Module Simplifies Work Cells In Plastics Welding
At NPE 2015, Dukane will show an optional module that significantly simplifies work cell configuration in plastics welding processes.

WELDING: Ultrasonic Stepper Motor Welder With Touch-Panel Technology
Debuting at NPE 2015 is the new Sonics & Materials ultrasonic stepper motor welder featuring a unified controller and power supply.

Resin Prices

Commodity Resin Prices Still Dropping
Led by lower global feedstock and resin prices, commodity resin prices continue to decline.


The Garage Is Open…Again
Like ‘the good old days,’ you’ll get to check out startup companies with fresh ideas and new technologies at NPE2015

Market Watch

Slower Growth for Medical Devices
Lower projected spending on healthcare in 2015 is the reason.

CW Brabender
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