Article Archive

Close-Up on Technology

New Welding Technologies Grabbed Spotlight at K Show
Greater use of electric servo drives and new hybrid systems incorporating multiple joining methods were recurring themes among the latest plastics welding and assembly equipment introduced at the recent K 2007 show in Dusseldorf.

More Choices for Grinding, Shredding
Many granulators on display at the K 2007 show in Dusseldorf last October were big models—150 to 200 hp—to enable higher throughputs or reclaiming larger parts and chunks. For example, Rapid Granulator from Sweden brought out the 600 model, the largest in its “open-hearted” series, which allow fast access to all internal components. It has a 600-mm-diam. rotor, 100 mm more than the next largest size.

Features

Recycling Is Hot: Lots of New Plants Trying Out New Technologies
With virgin resin so expensive, there’s plenty of recycling action—from PET bottle-to-bottle plants to new projects aimed at agricultural film, carpets, and auto-shredder residue.

Making History in Aachen
Aachen, Germany, is a very old city. The Romans enjoyed its hot springs, and Charlemagne made it the capital of his new Holy Roman Empire in 800 A.D. The cathedral, or Dom, once Charlemagne’s private chapel, dates from that era. Since 1950, Aachen has been making history in plastics processing, as well.

Weather Testing For the Real World
Broader use of plastics in building products and a growing desire to minimize painting of automotive parts is increasing the need for reliable predictions of light stability and weathering performance.

Strategies

New Look in PVC Siding
Tom Loper is a serial entrepreneur. Currently, he’s president, CEO, and co-founder of NuCedar Mills Inc. in Chicopee, Mass., which makes the first foamed PVC siding on the market.

Troubleshooter

What to Do About Weak Weld Lines
Weld or knit lines are perhaps the most common and difficult injection molding defect to eliminate.

Keeping Up With Technology

Low-Wear Metering for Abrasive PUR Components
Two new tandem piston metering machines are specially engineered to handle abrasive fillers used in PUR automotive components.

Now, a Monolayer PET Bottle for Ketchup
A novel oxygen scavenger with glass-like clarity from Constar International, Philadelphia, has been commercialized in a 46-oz monolayer ketchup container for ConAgra Foods’ Hunt’s Ketchup.

11-Layer Spiral Die For Blown Film
Windmoeller & Hoelscher in Germany (U.S. office in Lincoln, R.I.) has designed an 11-layer version of its patented Maxicone conical spiral die.

Pellet Conveying in Extruders
Research on pellet conveying in single-screw extruders was presented at the recent 24th International Colloquium of the Institute for Plastics Processing (IKV) in Aachen, Germany.

Red-Fluorescing Adhesive For Medical Parts
Red fluorescing adhesives for medicaldevice assembly remain clear until exposed to UV light, at which point they shine bright red to facilitate accurate bond-line inspection and product verification.

Novel Oxygen Scavenger For PET Packaging
New oxygen-scavenging technology for PET packaging has been developed by the ColorMatrix Group, Berea, Ohio.

Low-Speed Granulators From Taiwan
Shini USA, a new division of Budzar Industries, Inc., Willoughby, Ohio, is introducing to the U.S. low-speed granulators from Shini Plastics Technologies, Inc. in Taiwan.

Plant-wide Monitoring From a New Source
A new modular PC software package for plantwide process and production monitoring comes from Engel North America, York, Pa.

Modular Slide Elements Simplify Demolding
New modular mold-slide elements offer controlled slide functions directly from the mold movement.

Use Ambient-Temperature Water Cooling in Winter
When it’s cold outside, save water and energy by turning off your chiller.

Improved Generation of Compressed-Air Dryers
The new ERD Xpert series of compressed-air dryers from Fasti in Austria promises improved energy efficiency and more cost-effective hopper construction.

Hot-Runner Flow Control For Thermal Gates
WEB EXCLUSIVE A new hot-runner flow controller based on pressure rather than temperature was introduced recently by Mold-Masters Ltd., Georgetown, Ont.

Heat-Sealable PET Medical Film
If extruded PET film is quenched fast enough, the surface layer remains amorphous and can be heat sealed on high-speed equipment at 300 F, says Perfecseal, a Bemis Company in Oshkosh, Wis.

New Antimicrobial PCs For Medical Devices
WEB EXCLUSIVE Two new antimicrobial PC grades from Bayer MaterialScience, Pittsburgh, use a silver-based inorganic additive to control growth of bacteria on the surface of medical devices.

SLA Resin for Clear, PC-Like Prototypes
A new stereolithography (SL) resin is said to produce ultra-durable models and prototypes that are “as clear as glass” according to the CIELAB color-scale system.

Reverse-Flow Extruder Mixes Inside The Screw
A highly unusual, low-energy-consuming, single-screw extruder was shown at K 2007 in Germany last October by Cofit International Srl in Italy (U.S. office in Palm City, Fla.). It defies normal definitions of L/D by reversing melt flow at the end of the extruder, causing it to flow backward and exit from the middle of the barrel.

High-Definition 3D Parts 'Printer'
A new 3D printer for modeling and rapid prototyping is said to offer two levels of high definition plus high throughput of high-precision parts.

Hot-Runner Controller Manages Voltage Flutter
A new hot-runner temperature controller that regulates voltage to reduce or eliminate premature burn-out is new from Incoe Corp., Troy, Mich.

Guide to Friction and Wear Testing
A new guide to friction, wear, and erosion testing is available from ASTM International, W.

Modified PP for Lightweight Packaging
A modified high-crystalline PP homopolymer for packaging boasts better stiffness, strength, and processability than conventional grades.

New Press Models for Two-Material Molding
Two larger models have been added to the SEHS-CI all-electric double-shot line from Sumitomo Heavy Industries Ltd., Japan, represented here by Sumitomo Plastics-Machinery, Norcross, Ga.

PEEK/PBI Blend Takes High Heat
WEB EXCLUSIVE A new T-Series compound from Victrex USA Inc., West Conshohocken, Pa., is a proprietary blend of PEEK, carbon fiber, and Celazole polybenzimidazole (PBI) from PBI Performance Products, Charlotte, N.C.

Cold-Runner System for LSR
A cold-runner system designed for liquid silicone rubber as well as high-temperature-vulcanizing silicone rubber and other elastomers is being introduced in North America by D-M-E Co., Madison Heights, Mich.

Optimized Software/Hardware for 3D Printers
WEB EXCLUSIVE A new 3D printing optimization software and hardware package from Israel’s Objet Geometries Ltd. (U.S. office in Billerica, Mass.) is said to automate resin management, improve resin utilization, reduce the risk of human error in loading and unloading of cartridges, and assure model quality on very long runs.

Automated Parts Handling
An upgraded parts-handling robotic cell is designed for loading inserts into injection machines, unloading parts, feeding parts from trays to conveyors or vice versa, and feeding parts to assembly machines, inspection, or other secondary operations.

Mold Release System For Wind Blades
A new water-based mold-release system from Axel Plastics Research Laboratories Inc., Woodside, N.Y., is recommended specifically for fabricating large wind-energy blades.

Positive-Pressure Tester For Medical Packaging
WEB EXCLUSIVE New positive-pressure test systems for medical-device packaging is designed to measure the strength of the package’s seals and material.

Self-Aligning Pipe Compression Jig
A new self-aligning pipe compression jig for testing underground plastic pipe used for fresh, drainage, and waste-water transportation has been developed by Technical & Scientific Equipment Co.

SBC Has Improved High-Heat Compression Set
WEB EXCLUSIVE A new styrenic block copolymer from Kraton Polymers, Houston, improves the compression set and stress relaxation of styrenic TPEs at temperatures above 70 C (158 F). Molecular weight of Kraton G1633 is 50% higher than that of standard SBCs and its compression-set value approaches that of some TPVs.

Vacuum Cooling Tank Has Remote Control
Set-up for medical tubing production is said to be made easier with a new hand-held digital “pot” that lets the operator remotely adjust the vacuum level in a cooling tank while watching the tubing enter the tank.

First Bioabsorbable Medical Tubes
Biogeneral Inc. in San Diego and Dunn Industries Inc., Manchester, N.H., appear to be tied for making the first commercial bioabsorbable medical tubing.

Shape Recognition Sorts Pellets
New vision sorting of plastic pellets by shape was introduced at the K 2007 show in Germany last fall by Buhler Sortex of the U.K. (U.S. office in Stockton, Calif.). Shape recognition has been used in the food sector to spot defective vegetables of the same color.

Parison Controller Gets Upgrades
A new blow molding control from Hunkar Laboratories Inc., Cincinnati, is claimed to be 80% to 85% more energy efficient than the previous product.

Rolling Knife Cuts Hollow Profile
A prototype of a traveling circular saw to cut hollow profiles was shown at K 2007 last fall by Blake GmbH in Bleiskastel, Germany.

Screen Changer for Heavy Contamination
A new screen changer from Cofit International Srl in Italy (U.S. office in Palm City, Fla.) has pneumatic movement and provides less restricted flow of contaminated polymer during purging.

Controllers Target Valve Gates Or Hot-Runner Temperature
A new controller for sequential valve gates (SVG), and a new temperature controller were introduced recently by Mold-Masters Ltd., Georgetown, Ont.

PC Film Meets IMD Needs in Electronics
A new thermoformable polycarbonate film from SABIC Innovative Plastics, Pittsfield, Mass., boasts a 1H pencil hardness rating, easy formability, and high impact resistance for insert-molded graphics in portable electronics.

Hot-Runner Nozzle Upgrades
Value Shot hot-runner nozzles for multicavity applications from Hasco America Inc., Arden, N.C., have been redesigned and upgraded.

UV Screen Printer Enhanced for Plastics
A high-speed, multicolor UV screen printer for graphics has been enhanced for use on a variety of flat substrates from plastics to glass.

PLA Shrink Labels For Plastic Containers
Seal-It, div. of Printpack Inc., Farmingdale, N.Y. has developed biodegradable PLA shrink labels for glass and plastic containers.

Hot-Runner Valve Gate Plus Temperature Control
Sequential valve-gate control and hot-runner temperature control can both be managed within one new system from Gammaflux L.P., Sterling, Va.

UV-Protected PET For High-Heat Packaging
UV protection is embedded directly into a new PET packaging resin that features brilliant clarity and is designed for high-temperature applications.

Non-Migratory Medium-Slip Masterbatch
WEB EXCLUSIVE A new slip-additive concentrate is specially formulated for critical applications like multilayer barrier and lamination film that require non-migratory properties and a controlled medium coefficient of friction (COF). Available from Ingenia Polymers, Houston, IP1069 is a pellet containing a proprietary blend of additives said to be inherently non-migratory.

Smallest Heat-Shrink Tube
Advanced Polymers Inc., Salem, N.H., is used to making the smallest heat-shrink tubing in the world.

Corrosion-Resistant SMC Targets Heavy Trucks
A new corrosion-resistant sheet molding compound (SMC) from IDI Composites International, Noblesville, Ind., is aimed at valve covers, timing-chain covers, oil drain pans, and transmission covers for heavy trucks.

Hot Sprue Bushings For Single Cavities
A new line of externally heated hot sprue bushings and tips made for direct part gating in single cavities comes from DM-E Co., Madison Heights, Mich.

'Hybrid' Press Line Expands
New and updated injection machines from Nissei Plastic Industrial Co.

Amber Colorants for PET Rx Bottles
Two new amber color concentrates are specially designed for PET pharmaceutical prescription bottles.

Low-Cost Unitized System Available in U.S.
Unitized hot-runner manifold systems, which don’t require assembly before mounting between retainer plates, are a new offering in North America from PSG Plastic Service Group Inc., Stevensville, Mich.

Multilayer TPO Sheet Replaces PVC-Wrapped ABS
New formable multilayer TPO-based sheet from Premier Material Concepts (PMC), Findlay, Ohio, is claimed to be a cost-effective alternative to vinyl-wrapped ABS for marine interior panels and consoles, office furniture, seating, and exercise equipment.

Starting Up

Economic Outlook - April 2008
Our Pipe Business Index for North America declined 5% in 2007, ending a streak of five consecutive years of growth.

Your Business Pricing Update - April 2008
In polyolefins and PET, resin suppliers recently announced price increases at the same time that prices were actually falling, thanks to softer feedstock pricing and weakness in both domestic and overseas demand. Industry analysts don’t expect prices to move much in either direction right now.

Your Business In Brief - April 2008
WEB EXCLUSIVE Pergan GmbH of Germany, which acquired the Marshall, Texas, organic peroxide plant and business from Chemtura Corp. last August, is changing the trade names of some of its products.

CW Brabender
Carr Lane
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