Now in its 27th year, Plastics Technology’s conference devoted to injection molding is slated for April 4-6 in Charlotte.

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You might not have your 2017 calendar yet, assuming you still rely on the paper variety. But as soon as you get one—or even now, if you keep track of your schedule on your smart device—best to keep April 4-6 clear. Because that’s when Plastics Technology will be holding the 27th annual Molding Conference. Molding 2017 will take place over two-and-a-half days at the Sheraton/ Le Meridien Hotel in Charlotte, N.C.

Last year’s conference was a huge success, as the lineup of attendee badges in the accompanying photo attests. And as I write this, my editorial colleagues— conference co-chairs Executive Editor Matt Naitove and Senior Editor Tony Deligio—are working on the technical program, which is aimed 100% at injection molders. One thing Matt and Tony did with last year’s program resonated very well with molders: They expanded the program to include virtually every aspect of a molding operation—not just what goes on between the platens, but also crucial areas such as materials conveying, drying, feeding/blending, equipment main- tenance, best practices, ERP, and lots more. We found this formula to have worked very well in our two Extrusion Conferences, the second of which concluded Dec. 8. 

The Molding 2017 program will be similarly shaped, and will include sessions on topics such as these:

Emerging Technologies: Additive Manufacturing, Industry 4.0, predictive maintenance, and more.

Materials: Engineering materials, thermoplastic composites, bio-based plastics, LSR, recycled/reprocessed materials, and more. 

Tooling: Intelligent molds, servo-electric tool actions, 3D-printed tooling, advances in hot runners, and more.

Robots & Automation: Collaborative robots; adding vision and weight sensing to robots; when should you automate; and more.

Adding Value Through Decorating, Assembly, and Packaging: Going beyond simple assembly and decorating, to packaging, inspection, shipping, and more.

Establishing & Maintaining a Robust Process: Applying principles of Scientific Molding and other strategies to create repeatable molding processes.

Matt and Tony expect to have the program buttoned up shortly. So be on the lookout for more info from us in the weeks and months ahead. In the meantime, best to bookmark moldingconference.com and check in periodically for program details, registration, hotel info, and sponsors.