Article Archive

April 2012




Past Issues

Strategies

Molder Slashes Energy Cost With Move to Desiccant Drying
Yes there are still molders drying with tray ovens. But this processor replaced the last few it had and has reaped some impressive energy-savings benefits.

Starting Up

Mold-Masters Gains Exclusive Use Of Ritemp Technology for Hot Runners
Hot-runner supplier Mold-Masters Ltd., Georgetown, Ont., has obtained rights to exclusive global use of Ritemp evaporative cooling technology for hot-runner molds.

Take the Guesswork Out Of Profile-Cooling Needs
Think your downstream spray-type extrusion cooling lines might be longer than you need?

Oil’s the Answer for Pipe Processor’s Energy Savings
These days, processors are looking to cut energy costs by virtually any means possible.

Fermentable Sugars from Biomass Are Closer to Commercial Reality
The brave new world of bioplastics relies in large part on fermentable sugars from plants (see Close Up on Biopolymers in this issue). Industry wants to get away from obtaining those sugars from food crops such as corn and to use instead waste plant matter and other inedible cellulosic materials, referred to collectively as “biomass.” Although there is currently no industrial-scale production of fermentable sugars from biomass, a number of firms are working toward that goal.

MuCell Extrusion Buys Dow’s Sheet Patents
Last month, MuCell Extrusion LLC, Woburn, Mass., bought the patent portfolio of Dow Chemical Co., Midland, Mich., covering polyolefin sheet extrusion.

Changes Aplenty Among Extruder Suppliers
Last month bought three changes of significance among equipment suppliers of extruded film and sheet.•Gloucester Engineering Co., Gloucester Mass., announced it had acquired Future Design Inc., Mississauga, Ont.

Resealable Flexible Packaging Uses Velcro Seals
Amcor Flexibles, Mundelein, Ill., and Velcro Europe S.A. in Spain have formed a strategic partnership to bring an innovative easy-open and reseal system to flexible packaging for cheese, milk powder, fresh ready meals, bread, and fresh produce.

PPA Moves into Gearshift Levers
WEB EXCLUSIVE: Vestamid HT plus polyphthalamide (PPA) from Evonik Industries High Performance Polymers in Germany (in the U.S., Evonik Degussa Corp., Parsippany, N.J.), is being used in gearshift lever parts for a major European auto company.

Automotive Drives Injection Overmolding of Composite Sheet
The drive for weight savings in the auto industry has spawned a growing range of applications for overmolding of so-called “organic sheet composites.” These are continuous-fiber fabrics preimpregnated with thermoplastic resin (usually nylon), which are then heated until soft and placed in an injection mold, where they are formed and overmolded in selected areas with additional nylon to add ribs, attachment points, etc.

New Supplier of Rigid PVC Compounds
WEB EXCLUSIVE: Sylvin Technologies Inc., Denver, Pa., a compounder of flexible and semi-rigid PVC, has now expanded into rigid PVC compounds.

Keeping Up With Technology

INJECTION MOLDING: New Way to Protect Molds & Press Platens
Sometimes costly and seemingly intractable problems can have simple and inexpensive solutions.

EXTRUSION: Thickness Scanner Is Precise, ‘ Eco-Friendly’
New ULO (Ultra-light O-frame) scanner from Scantech Americas, Gaithersburg, Md., features a compact frame and x-ray sensor and a host of energy-saving features.

AUXILIARIES: Low-Pressure Water Filter Saves Time, Money
Shown at this month’s NPE2012 fair in Orlando, the LPF Series Filters from Tekleen, Los Angeles, are low-pressure, fully automatic, self-cleaning water filters featuring working pressure as low as 15 psi.

EXTRUSION: Modular Roll Stack
Battenfeld-Cincinnati USA (formerly American Maplan Corp.), McPherson, Kans., has developed a highly efficient roll-stack concept to complement its line of single-screw extruders for sheet.

BLOW MOLDING: Italian Suction Blow Molder at NPE
This month, S.T.

AUXILIARIES: Melt Indexer Is Accurate, Stable
On display this month at NPE2012 in Orlando is the new MP1200 extrusion plastometer from Tinius Olsen, Horsham, Pa.

MATERIALS: New PC/ABS for Auto Interiors
WEB EXCLUSIVE: At NPE2012 this month, Styron Automotive, Berwyn, Pa., is introducing two new premium PC/ABS blends that are said to be more easy-flowing and more cost-effective than competing grades.

MATERIALS: Polystyrenes with PCR Debut at NPE
WEB EXCLUSIVE: What’s billed as “the industry’s first line of polystyrenes containing post-consumer recycled (PCR) PS” is being highlighted at NPE2012 in Orlando this month.

MATERIALS: High-Flow PP Random Copolymer for Packaging
 WEB EXCLUSIVE: Borealis Polymers N.V. in Mechelen, Belgium, has introduced RJ901MO for thin-wall packaging and housewares such as storage boxes and CD/DVD cases.

MATERIALS: High-Temperature Resin for 3D Digital Printing
 WEB EXCLUSIVE: Objet Inc., Billerica, Mass., has come out with a material (RGD525) for simulating the heat resistance of engineering thermoplastics, together with outstanding dimensional stability for static 3D models and prototypes.

Know How

Working with Color Concentrates
Industry needs more development of enhanced-mixing screws.

Getting Good Data from DOE
How do you know what process variables control a part’s dimensions or other properties? A properly conducted DOE is the answer—but incorrect procedure will yield useless data.

Water, Oil, Air, or None?
There is no one 'best' barrel cooling medium, but there seems to be a shift in the industry toward air cooling.

The Value of 20 Bits of Data
With these 20 bits of data, toolrooms can drastically lower the cost of keeping molds running and improve mold reliability and tooling life while reducing breakdowns and molding better parts.

Hourly Rates

Custom Molding Slows a Bit
It’s hard to discern a definite trend in the results from our latest half-year survey of custom injection molders.

Features

How Gravimetric Control Systems Pay Off in Blow Molding
Gravimetric control systems offer blow molders improvements in processing efficiencies above and beyond their ability to regulate resin usage.

Powder Injection Molding Helps PTI Thrive in Specialties
“We like challenges. We like to do things that other people are scared to do.”

Compressed Air: Optimize Treatment and Distribution to Save Energy
In previous articles, we discussed the enormous waste of energy and money that occurs every day in many plants due to inefficient use and generation of compressed air.

Cures for Common Hot-Runner Wiring Problems
In the challenging environment of the last several years, manufacturers are looking inward to improve their manufacturing processes, streamline their supply chains, lower maintenance costs, andimprove their bottom lines.

NPE Preview – See what's coming in the NPE Zone
NPE 2012 runs from June 2-5 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida. Read all about it in Plastics Technology's NPE Zone.

Column

The Tie That Binds
It's sustainability, and it's here to stay.

Construction Outlook: Residential Recovery Starting
The worst is over but the rebound will be slow.

Close-Up on Technology

Bioresin Company Takes ‘Do It All’ Approach
Company adopts 'cradle to cradle' approach.

Conference Report: Bioplastics Are Breaking Out of Their 'Green' Niche
The excitement in the air of the recent Innovation Takes Root conference was a sense of arrival.

UV Cure Solves LSR Processing Challenges
Extended cure times for thick parts and temperature sensitivity of pharmaceutical additives are two challenges for silicone molding and extrusion that can be overcome with new low-temperature UV curing technology.

Resin Prices

Commodity & Engineering Resin Prices Climb Higher
Prices of major commodity thermoplastics continued to move upward through end of first quarter.

Recycled Resin Prices

RPET Prices Follow Oil and Virgin Resin Prices Upwards
RPET prices were sliding lower at the end of 2011, but they began the climb back up by mid-January.

Troubleshooter

Soothing a Temperamental Process To Make Better Bottles
Careful choices of machines, tools and operators are critical to tame the process to produce high-quality bottles consistently.

CW Brabender
HammerTek
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