PT Blog

Royal DSM (U.S. office in Elgin, Ill.) has signed a “One DSM” technology partnership agreement with Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG)—a 100% subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corp. All DSM businesses active in supplying materials and technology to the automotive sector are part of the agreement including: Engineering Plastics, Dyneema (ultrahigh molecular weight PE fiber), and 3D Printing/additive manufacturing, including Somos for stereolithography (SLA, and other technologies like Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF)), also known as FDM.

One of the specialty areas of TMG—a high-performance development, testing and manufacturing company—is in the manufacture of products by additive manufacturing, both for motorsport use and for external customers.

Read More

Celebrating the 47th annual Automotive Innovation Awards Competition at its gala last month in Livonia, Mich., SPE’s Automotive Division, announced the winners of this year’s nine categories. This competition, for which I was honored to be a participating judge for the third consecutive year, is the oldest and largest recognition event in the automotive and plastics industries.

Take a look at this year’s winners, starting with this year’s Grand Award winner—also the winner of the Body Exterior category. Of the nine winners, all but one category entailed the use of thermoplastics. In subsequent blogs, I will highlight some of the other contenders in the various categories that definitely merit attention.

Read More

A stack of trade magazines on a coffee table (hopefully with Plastics Technology on top); relevant certifications framed and hanging from the wall; and parts in glass cases, simultaneously on display and locked away like a family’s fine china.

I learned a long time ago that every one of those parts has a story, and over the years, some of my best articles started with the simple question of, “What’s that?”. More than a brochure or a website, the parts are a true calling card for the molder—a tangible representation of the company’s technical chops and ultimately a means to win business. Go to a trade show where molders are prevalent and you can count on those same parts being on display at the booth as a means to lure in potential business.

Read More

Discrete layers of cyclic olefin copolymer (COC) were found to provide significant performance enhancements in three- and five-layer LLDPE packaging film structures.  The findings of the study conducted by TOPAS Advanced Polymers, Florence, Ky. were recently presented by market development manager Paul Tatarka at the SPE ANTEC 2017 technical conference in Anaheim, Calif.

TOPAS Advanced Polymers, Inc. researchers demonstrated, via design of experiments (DOE) methods, that COC provides greater than expected toughness, strength, stiffness, and appearance (low haze) in multilayer packaging structures made of LLDPE. Said Tatarka, “We found that by splitting COC into at least two layers in five-layer structures, further significant property enhancements are possible without changing COC content.”

Read More

Having made some significant commercial strides with its Green PE, Brazil’s Braskem (U.S. Braskem America Inc., Philadelphia) is now focusing on biobased PET as evidenced by its newly-announced partnership with Danish-based Haldor Topsoe, a global leader in catalysis and surface science. For now, it appears that Green PP, which had been expected to be the next step, is being put on the back burner.

The partners’ new technological cooperation agreement is to develop a pioneering route to produce MEG (monoethylene glycol), a key component of PET resin, from sugar. Construction of a pilot plant in Denmark, with a 2019 operational startup, is part of the agreement.

Read More