Article Archive

January 2007


Past Issues

Keeping Up With Technology

Fast-Responding Infrared Heaters
Medium-wave infrared heaters are available from Krelus AG of Hirschthal, Switzerland, which has begun marketing in the U.S., though it does not have an office here.

Larger Motor Doubles Pipe Output
Running a small polyolefin pipe extruder with a high-speed "hyper drive" doubles output without any extra gear wear, says Cincinnati Extrusion, Erlanger, Ky.

Touchscreen Display for 16 Feeders
The new Congrav OP5 touchscreen operator interface from Brabender Technologie Inc., Mississauga, Ont., can monitor and control up to 16 weigh feeders.

New Valve Gates For Prototype And Production Volumes
New valve gates for single-cavity or prototype molds and for production molding of commodity or engineering materials have arrived from Mold-Masters Ltd., Georgetown, Ont.

Stainless/Ceramic Sandwich Improves Pelletizer Die
New "Anti-Freeze" die face for underwater pelletizers from Crown/CDL Technology Inc., Addison, Ill., has a 0.200-in. titanium carbide/stainless-steel surface layer braised onto 0.100 in. of pure zirconium ceramic, which is in turn braised onto the stainless-steel die body.

Electric Mold Carrier For Large-Area PUR Parts
A new electric mold carrier is said to be extremely robust with low-maintenance and clean, energy-efficient operation.

Collapsible Cores and Other New Mold Components
Several new standardized components that can save time and expense in moldmaking were introduced recently by Progressive Components International Corp., Wauconda, Ill.

Gate Cutters Reach Into Confined Spaces
Two new models have been added to an economical series of heavy-duty, 6-in. gate cutters first introduced in early 2005.

High-Speed Takeaway For PET Bottles
A new high-speed takeaway system for Aoki and Nissei injection-stretch-blow molding machines claims to be the fastest and most accurate in the industry.

Clay Nanotubes Mix Well in Plastics
Last month saw the first production-scale trial of compounding a nanocomposite using specially treated halloysite clay nanotubes.

TP Composite Panels Are Heat-Formable
New thermoplastic composite panels with a foam core and glass-reinforced skins can be heated and shaped, even with molded-in ribs, and they accept metal fastener inserts.

Corner-Guided Former Boasts Higher Precision
A new corner-guided forming station is available for CS and SRS continuous thermoformers from Brown Machine LLC, Beaverton, Mich.

Shorter Closure Cuts PET Bottle Weight and Cost
A new class of beverage closures for PET carbonated soft-drink (CSD) bottles features a shorter design that cuts overall bottle weight and cost.

High-Speed Robot and IML System
A new high-speed servo robot designed for fast removal of parts from presses of up to 300 tons is new from Wittmann Inc., Torrington, Conn.

Solids Heat Exchanger Preheats or Cools Resins
Cooling pellets or powder after resin production or compounding to prevent sticking or caking is easier with the Bulkflow heat exchanger from Bulkflow Technologies Ltd., Calgary, Alberta.

Marine Gelcoats Resist Blushing
New Blush Guard marine gelcoats from Valspar Composites, Gardena, Calif., come in dark colors that reportedly resist blushing and fading from prolonged sun exposure or damage caused by shrink-wrap packaging.

Heat Exchanger Replaces Tandem Foam Extruder
A combination heat exchanger and static mixer from Fluitec Georg AG in Neftenbach, Switzerland, is being used to replace the second cooling extruder in tandem extrusion of PS foam.

Dry Decontamination of Preforms Is a First
The industry's first dry decontamination system for PET preforms is targeted for extended-shelf-life (ESL) products like dairy beverages and fruit juices.

Low-Gloss Acetal for Auto Exteriors
What's said to be the first low-gloss black acetal copolymer for automotive exteriors has been developed by Ticona, Florence, Ky.

Double Heat Control For PLA Pelletizing Die
Since 2002, an unusual die has been pelletizing PLA biopolymer at NatureWorks LLC, Minnetonka, Minn.

Styrenic/Olefinic TPVs Take Higher Heat
A new type of TPV elastomers offers heat resistance up to 140 C for automotive and industrial applications such as window encapsulation, grommets and spouts for cable or hoses, air ducts, gaskets, and sealing profiles.

Robotic Extrusion of Car Window Seals
The Interior Systems Div. of Faurecia in Nanterre, France (U.S. office in Farmington Hills, Mich.), has commercialized what is believed to be the first commercial multi-axis robotic extrusion process for a plastic part in the U.S.

Low-Profile Additives for Pultrusion, SMC, BMC
Reichhold, Inc., Research Triangle Park, N.C., is rounding out its product line by offering low-profile additives (LPAs) on their own, rather than as part of a resin system.

Conductive PPO/Nylon Handles Powder Coating
The first in a new family of conductive PPO/nylon blends has been optimized for powder coating in applications such as office furniture, marine components, and non-automotive transportation.

Antiblock Coating for TPE
A new anti-block coating for pellets is designed to improve processing and conveyance of TPOs, TPVs, and styrenic TPEs.

Steel Water Manifolds With Accessory Ports
A new line of water manifolds was introduced recently by EMI Plastics Equipment, Wickliffe, Ohio.

Full-Featured Granulators Arrive from China
Numerous features that are normally optional are standard on the newly designed SG Series granulators from Hamilton Avtec Inc., Mississauga, Ont.

Chemical Purge for Tough Molding and Extrusion Jobs
A new chemical purging agent boasts twice the efficiency of previous products.

Extra-Wide, Extra-Flexible Dual Turret Winder
The new Model 1650 dual-turret winder for 150-in.-wide blown film is the widest dual-turret model ever built by Davis-Standard Converting Systems Group, Somerville, N.J.

Specialty TPE Finds Automotive Role
One of the first blow molded applications for Alcryn MPR (Melt-Processible Rubber) from Advanced Polymer Alloys, Wilmington, Del., is a bellows for a climate-control system in GM cars.

New Source of Granulators
Motan, Inc., Plainwell, Mich., is now offering granulators in addition to its other auxiliary equipment.

New Resin/Catalyst Pump Reduces Flow Variation
A new high-precision pumping system is claimed to significantly reduce catalyst-to-resin ratio variation and to help eliminate problems like porosity, pre-release, and gelcoat cracking.

Mold Simulation Now Predicts Birefringence
New release 6.1 of Moldflow Plastics Insight (MPI) molding simulation software from Moldflow Corp., Framingham, Mass., has a significant new capability-prediction of birefringence, or double refraction, which causes optical defects in lenses.

Two New Sources of Wind-Turbine Fabrics
Fabricators of composite wind-turbine blades will soon have two additional sources of glass fabrics.

Food-Contact TPV Bonds to Many Resins
A new TPV from ExxonMobil Chemical Co., Akron, Ohio, is FDA compliant for food contact and bonds to a range of thermoplastics.

RIM Floor Mats for Heavy Trucks
A sound-attenuating polyurethane elastomer system can be molded into one-piece floor coverings for cab interiors of heavy-duty and long-haul trucks and other heavy equipment.

New Copolyester for Shrink Labels
A new copolyester resin designed to produce shrink-film body labels for packaged consumer goods boasts the highest ultimate shrinkage in the marketplace-over 75%-together with low shrink force.

One- or Two-Zone Hot-Runner Control
A new low-cost hot-runner temperature controller that provides one or two zones of control is new from Plastic Service GmbH (PSG) in Germany, newly represented here by Softline Corp., Stevensville, Mich.

Features

Global Competition - Thin-Gauge Thermoformers Face Tough Competition
Competitive pressure from overseas manufacturers is being felt on different levels by U.S. thermoformers.

Global Competition - High Shipping Costs Give U.S. Blow Molders an Edge
When it comes to foreign competition, blow molders feel relatively invulnerable in their biggest market–bottles.

Global Competition - Injection Molders' Weapons: Advanced Technology or Secure Market Niche
Growing competition from low-cost overseas producers has spurred U.S. injection molders to reconsider what market segments they serve and how.

Global Competition: How U.S. Processors Cope
Globalization.

He Sat on Your Side of the Table
It is commonly said that the best supplier is one who really understands the customer’s business.

Global Competition - Extrusion: Imports Threaten Some Films And Maybe Profiles, But Not Sheet
Global competition from lower-cost manufacturers, primarily in Asia, affects individual extrusion markets differently.

Extreme Performance - Or Processability?: New TP Polyimide Offers Both
It has the highest Tg of any amorphous thermoplastic plus premium-level chemical resistance and true melt processability with no need for post-cure.

Starting Up

Your Business in Brief - January 2007
New Name for GE SiliconesThe silicones, quartz, and ceramics businesses of the former GE Advanced Materials, Wilton, Conn., are now called Momentive Performance Materials.

Your Business Outlook - January 2007
While the output of the overall injection molding sector declined moderately in 2005 compared with the previous year, production of molded packaging products was steady, and in some cases increased.

Your Business Pricing Update - January 2007
The fourth quarter saw a significant drop in prices of commodity thermoplastics such as polyolefins and PET, which largely negated the price increases of the second and third quarters.

Close-Up on Technology

New Customizable Additives for Polyolefins and PVC
Developing a wide range of customizable additives to meet specific needs in polyolefins and PVC is a major thrust at Chemtura Corp., Middlebury, Conn.

New Rubber Types Play Well with Plastics
Plastics and rubber sometimes compete, but they also collaborate.

New 'Ultra' Thermoplastics Contend for Top of Performance Pyramid
The industry’s broadest line of highly heat- and chemical-resistant thermoplastics is being fortified with several new amorphous and crystalline materials in the so-called “ultra-performance” category.

Troubleshooter

Stop Black Specks!
Black specks in film or sheet–especially in light-colored or clear plastics–lead to scrap, unscheduled shutdowns, and dissatisfied customers.

Strategies

Rigid Packaging Goes Lighter, Thinner With Microcellular Foam
Molding higher volumes of a rigid thin-wall part typically means going to a larger press for increased injection and clamping capacity.

CW Brabender
HammerTek
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