PT Blog

I recently reported on the grand award winner (body exterior) and the winner of the other eight categories of the 2017 SPE Automotive Innovation Awards. Having participated as one of the judges for the third year in a row, I have been impressed by nearly all of the finalists and would like to highlight some of the other applications that merit mention. In this case, take a look at some of the interesting body exterior and body interior finalists. In the case of the former, it was no surprise to see that headlamp LED technology continues to evolve, with two finalists sporting new technologies.

Body Exterior

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We’ve already told you about the all new parts competition that will be a part of the annual Molding conference for the first time in 2018, but lest you think we’ve neglected the heart of the gathering, I write today to let you know that the initial agenda for the event to be held Feb. 27-March 1 in Long Beach, Calif. has been completed.

In addition to familiar and popular tracks like:

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Maybe next year you can add 3D-printed footwear to your holiday wish list—several major sports brands are exploring additive manufacturing for running shoes.

3D printing supplier EOS North America Inc. and Under Armour have formed a partnership to advance commercial 3D-printed shoes. The two organizations will jointly work to scale Under Armour's 3D footwear business through the development of advanced laser sintering technology, and leveraging EOS' expertise in industrialized 3D production.

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More than 118 million pounds of EPS were recycled in 2016, including 63 million pounds of post-consumer packaging and 55.7 million pounds of post-industrial packaging, according to the 2016 EPS Recycling Rate Report. Over the past decade, EPS has achieved an average recycling rate of 15%, one of the highest of the plastics family, according to the EPS Industry Alliance.

There’s been a couple of news items related to polystyrene recycling that should hopefully boost those numbers even more in the future.

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Within the last two years, we have reported on Finland’s Carbodeon, represented in the U.S. by Silicon Sense, and its acceleration of its nanodiamond additives business for industrial use via expanded manufacturing capacity.

Nanodiamond additives, which have joined the commercial arsenal of thermally-conductive fillers, have been shown to significantly boost the thermal and mechanical performance of polymer compounds, polymer coatings, metal finishing, CMP polishing and a range of other applications.

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