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Extrusion Conference 2015: Call for Papers

By: James Callari 8. April 2015

 

 

Plastics Technology is bringing the world of extrusion together in one place, at one time, at The Extrusion 2015 Conference. During this unique two-day event, business owners, plant managers, process engineers and manufacturing personnel will be brought up to speed on technology developments impacting all types of extrusion operations. The event will take place Nov. 2-3 at the Omni Charlotte Hotel, Charlotte, N.C.

 

Each day will consist of morning presentations of interest to extrusion processors in general. These will include, but are not limited to, presentations on issues such as screw design; new materials and additives; high-speed extrusion; energy efficiency; changeovers; purging; controls; foaming; and important auxiliary equipment such as conveying, blending, filtration and much more.

 

In the afternoon of each day there will be three concurrent sessions that drill down to the specific process: Film/Sheet; Pipe/Profile/Tubing; and Compounding.

 

To submit a topic for consideration, please click here.

 

 Sponsorship opportunities and tabletop exhibits are also available.

Twin-Screw Elements Offer Option to Kneading Blocks

By: James Callari 24. March 2015

 

Twin-screw compounding machine builder Steer introduced at NPE2015 a new series of screw elements that reportedly are suited to replace kneading blocks in certain applications.

 

Called Melt Formation Elements (MFEs), they will be used on Steer's Mega and Omega co-rotating twin-screw platforms to reportedly provide compounders with improved reliability, reduced wear and increased uniformity of melting and mixing.

 

Steers says the elements are designed to combat a series of problems faced by compounders of masterbatch, engineering plastics and difficult-to-process materials, notably: high wear; degradation during melting;  uncontrolled breakdown in the process and transmission section; and improper material flow causing pressure peaks, which in turn leads to shear peaks that create torque instability and re-agglomeration,

 

As Steer explains it, while conventional kneading blocks (right handed, left handed or neutral) are effective at dispersive mixing, they are too harsh for many applications. This is because they present a perpendicular face to the flow causing melt stagnation and large pressure and shear peaks during melting. 

 

Notes Dr. Babu Padmanabhan, Steer's managing director & chief knowledge officer, “The MFEs are designed to create turbulence to the melt flow without stagnation.  They can replace conventional kneading blocks that suffer from lack of shear uniformity completely removing any right angled face to the melt flow.”   

 

PTi To Jointly Commercialize Patented Layer-Flipping Technology

By: James Callari 23. March 2015

 

Processing Technologies International (PTi), Aurora, Ill., has announced that it is in the final stages of formalizing a commercial agreement with a leading global tooling manufacturer for the exclusive sourcing of its patented layer-flipping technology. This technology allows processors to quickly change the position of extrudates from two extruders in a coextruded structure without needing to disassemble components and shut down the line.

 

The final announcement on commercialization will follow upon completion of a formal agreement. ”Since this technology accompanies the sheet die and feed block, it is a natural fit to align ourselves with a global tooling entity,” states Dana Hanson, president of PTi. PTi debuted the product at K2013.

 

Changeovers in piston position due to hydraulic actuation of the piston cylinder and unique flow design are accomplished in a matter of seconds as opposed to conventional techniques which require some machine disassembly and could take up to several hours, according to Hanson. The diverter valve can be utilized on new or existing systems.  

 

“Since being awarded our original design patent in 2013, we’ve continued to develop this technology and have filed a second design patent just over a month ago,” said Hanson. “This real-time capability delivers major improvements in efficiency and productivity for processors of coextruded product.”

 

The diverter valve features a dual-piston valve which is moveable in a stationary body. The body has two entrances that feed from separate extruders. The first position of the valve allows the material to enter the piston valve and permits a straight through flow path. Normally, this would produce an A-B structure. When the alternated position two is selected, the materials are routed through crossover flow paths that changes extrudate positions. This produces a B-A structure.

 

During position changes, a unique flushing channel design keeps flow from stagnating for quick and efficient changeovers. The practical use for the diverter valve is its quick “real-time” purging of cap layers in a multilayer co-extrusion structure for sheet production, according to Hanson.

 

The diverter valve enables the processor to purge the cap layer extruder back into the inner layer of the structure while an alternate cap layer extruder runs a specific resin formulation (i.e., different color). Each cap layer (both inner and outer layers) can utilize this special valve to permit this real-time purging for rapid changeovers. This occurs without shutting down the line, thus permitting recovery of the purged resin directly back into the structure instead of losing the material onto the production floor and recovery through a grinder. 

At NPE, Tap Into the PT Knowledge Network

By: James Callari 16. February 2015

That booth is in a prominent spot in the West Hall of the Orlando Convention Center in Orlando, Fla., which will be hosting NPE2015 from March 23 to 27. Yes, we’ll be giving out T-shirts; we’ll have a number of contests; we’ll be talking about some new things we have going on (such as conferences, databases, and even a new benchmarking study); and we’ll even be serving a beverage or two.

 

In addition, like in 2012, our booth will have a theme. We’re calling it the PT Knowledge Network, and that theme is consistent with our mission each time we visit a processing plant, write or edit an article, update our website, send out an e-newsletter, or host a webinar: To provide useful knowledge to our audience of plastics processors by acting as a conduit between them and the experts in the field.

 

So how do we do this at a trade show? By bringing to life the pages of the magazine and exposing show attendees to the depth and breadth of product offerings of Plastics Technology and our related sister publications.

 

The main way we’re doing this by holding a series of short seminars at our booth throughout the show. No charge. Most of our speakers will be the same columnists and insiders who provide the technical tips, insights, and know-how you’ve come to expect from Plastics Technology. Expert minds in materials science, injection molding, extrusion, tooling, additive manufacturing, and more. Right there for you … not only to listen to, but to engage with.

 

My suggestion: Get there early. As in 2012, our booth will fill up with attendees for many of our presentations. Our agenda is just about locked up. Here’s what we have going on: 

 

MONDAY, March 23
3:00-3:45  How to Calculate Shot Size vs Barrel Capacity
John Bozzelli, Injection Molding Solutions (Scientific Molding)

 

TUESDAY March 24
10:30-11:15  The Importance of Gate Geometry
Randy Kerkstra, Nanoplas, Inc.

3:00-3:45  Drying PET for Rigid Container Applications
Pete Stoughton, consultant

 

WEDNESDAY March 25
10:30-11:15  5 Common Extrusion Problems, and How to Solve Them,                       Jim Frankland, Frankland Plastics Consulting LLC

1:00-1:45  The Three Ts of Growing Your Own Talent
Rich Stueber, Mold Design Manager, NyproMold, Inc

3:00-3:45  Trying to Solve Molding Problems? Think in Plastic, Not Steel,                 Rich Oles, Tooling Manager, Stone Plastics

 

THURSDAY March 26
10:30-11:15  Big-Area Additive Manufacturing
Chad E. Duty, Ph.D., Oak Ridge National Laboratory

3:00-3:45  Resin Drying: Separating the Science from the Myth, 
Mike Sepe, Michael Sepe LLC

 

Check out a special page on our website for updates: PTonline.com/network.

 

See you at the show.

 

Recycling Post-Consumer PET Thermoforms: Did The Three Grants Work?

By: James Callari 4. February 2015

We all pretty much know by now that PET clamshells are recyclable, but are they being recycled? And to what extent? Chandler Slavin, marketing manager & sustainability coordinator at Dordan Manufacturing Co. Inc., is leaving no stone unturned in an effort to find out. .

 

Ms. Slavin’s family-owned company, based in Woodstock, Ill., has been thermoforming clamshells, blisters, trays, etc. for 50 years now. Ms. Slavin’s efforts to raise awareness of  the recyclability of thermoforms among her customers has not gone unnoticed. Among other things, she and Dordan have been featured in numerous trade publications, including this one in May 2011 and March 2013.

 

Recently, Chandler Slavin completed her third report focused on PET thermoformed recycling. This one dealt with whether grants awarded by SPI and NAPCOR in 2013 to three separate recyclers/waste management firms had helped in developing a future business model for PET thermoform collection and recycling.

 

Ms. Slavin comments, “Have the floodgates opened? Are communities finding a market for post consumer PET thermoformed packaging? It is one thing to accept material for recycling; it is quite another, however, to actually recycle it.”

 

Her full analysis can be downloaded here

 

You can access all of her sustainable packaging previous research here.




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