August 2003

Close-Up on Technology

Barrel Heating Gets Faster, More Efficient
A new way to heat and cool the barrels of plastics processing machines was launched at NPE 2003 by Insul-Vest Inc.

Molded-In Fabrics Give New Look and Feel To Electronic Enclosures
Inclosia Solutions, a unit of Dow Chemical Co., claims to have found a better way to integrate denim, suede, leather, fur, lace, velvet and other fabrics into the surfaces of enclosures for portable devices like cell phones, laptop computers, and pocket calculators.

New Molding & Tooling Technologies In the Pipeline at Germany's IKV
Software that helps you select the right rapid-tooling method for your application, fresh approaches to multi-component injection molding, and new techniques for LSR foaming and micro-molding are some of the top projects being investigated at the Institute fur Kunststoffverarbeitung (Institute for Plastics Processing) or IKV in Aachen, Germany.

New Twist in Thermoplastic Composites Makes High-Strength, Net-Shape Fasteners
A Swiss manufacturer of aerospace, automotive, and medical parts has developed a novel compression molding process that delivers net-shape thermoplastic composites with strength per unit weight reportedly competitive with those of machined steel, aluminum, and titanium.

Tandem Tools: New Twist on Stack Molds for Larger Parts
Two new tooling concepts adapt the idea of stack molds to producing larger parts that can be of dissimilar shape, size, color, or material.

Processor's Edge

Plastics a Carpenter Could Love
Jim Rock has tried to put sawdust into plastics off and on for 20 years, long before wood composites became fashionable.


A Show Of Ideas
Two big questions about the recent NPE show in Chicago have now been answered.

NPE News Wrap-Up: Blow Molding
Long-stroke machines go rotary, all-electrics grow larger,and PET bottles get a new “glass” coating. Visitors to the show got to see all these and more.

NPE News Wrap-Up: Extrusion
Gearless extrusion, cryogenic profile calibration, wireless data communications, and automatic start-up of blown film lines are just a few of the new ways to raise efficiency and output that were highlighted at NPE.

NPE News Wrap-Up: Injection Molding
Stress-free production of large car windows, in-mold painting, and an injection unit that applies pack and hold while accumulating the next shot were a few of the cutting-edge technologies on display.

NPE News Wrap-Up: Thermoforming
Soaring interest in in-mold finishing techniques for injection molding and fiber-reinforced composites offers new prospects for cut-sheet formers.

CW Brabender
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