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Back Plastic News Processing Technology

Hydrolysis-resistant polyester resin homes in on auto electrics

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Presentation by Dr. Peter Eibeck, Business Development E/E, Engineering Plastics Europe, BASF SE
The challenges for materials in the automotive drive technology include amongst others high temperatures, moisture and vibrations. In order to be able to withstand such an environment over the service life of a car, the plastics used often have to be specially formulated. 

Tupperware still innovating with plastics

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When many consumers think of plastic, Tupperware comes to mind. Thanks to the company's direct sales strategy, the famously kitschy Tupperware parties that were popular in the 1950s and still go on today; perhaps no plastic brand occupies a bigger place in American pop culture.
But Tupperware's design team is not stuck in the past. David Kusuma, vice president of product development and R&D worldwide at Tupperware Brands Corp., says the company's innovation continues. 

MIT/NCER Release Study on US Electronics Recycling Industry

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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Materials Systems Laboratory and the U.S. National Center for Electronics Recycling (NCER) have released Quantitative Characterization of Domestic and Transboundary Flows of Used Electronics, a study that analyses the generation, collection and export of obsolete electronics generated in the United States. 
The study was completed under the umbrella of the StEP initiative—a partnership of several UN organizations, industry, government and international organizations, NGOs and the science sector—and funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in support of the U.S. government’s National Strategy for Electronics Stewardship. 

Plastic packaging processor Constar files for third bankruptcy since 2008

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Constar International Holdings, a maker of plastic bottles primarily for food and beverage markets, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. This is the third bankruptcy filing since 2008 for the Trevose, PA-based company, which listed assets of as much as $100 million and debt as high as $500 million according to U.S. Bankruptcy Court papers.
The largest unsecured creditors listed in the bankruptcy filing include DAK Americas and DAK Resinas de Mexico, owed more than $15 million, and Britvic Soft Drinks Ltd. of London, which is owed $5.43 million. 

Innovia named as plastic banknote polymer provider

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Innovia Films Ltd. has revealed itself to be the film supplier for the Bank of England’s plastic banknotes, to be launched in 2016. The company’s Guardian polymer substrate is already used for plastic currency in 20 countries including Canada. 
The deal will see Innovia invest £20 million ($31 million) in the construction of an opacification plant at its Wigton, England site. The company also will create 70-80 jobs. 

Biffa Polymers Reopens UK Plastics Recycling Line

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Biffa Polymers has announced it has reopened the post-consumer plastics recycling line at its Redcar, U.K., facility, following what it calls a major plant upgrade. The upgrade, including investments in new equipment, will allow the facility to run at full capacity, says Biffa.
“It’s great news for all concerned that our Redcar plant is now fully back in business,” says Chris Hanlon, Biffa Polymers’ commercial manager. “Recovering value from waste is what Biffa does best and at Biffa Polymers we’re completely focused on maximizing the recovery of plastics collected throughout the U.K. To be able to include the post-consumer line again at Redcar is an impressive achievement.” 

Dynaplas Ltd. acquires Peterborough’s Chilton Precision Inc.

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Dynaplas Ltd. has acquired Chilton Precision Inc., a Peterborough, Ont.-based high precision machining provider that works in a number of industrial and commercial industries.
“Adding Steve and Mike Chilton’s expertise in precision machining deepens our company’s talent level in mold making and will make us more efficient in supplying the highest quality products to our customers,” says Greg Walton, Dynaplas’ president and CEO. 

Nexeo adds antibacterial polymers to portfolio

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Nexeo Solutions LLC has expanded its European distribution portfolio by adding antibacterial polymers made by Parx Plastics. Nexeo — based in The Woodlands, Texas — now will offer European distribution of Parx’s Sanipolymers-brand line of materials with antiseptic and antibacterial properties.
“We are very proud to include these worldwide innovative materials within our product offering,” Nexeo’s Alan Arezes said in a recent news release. Arezes serves as business growth and transformation manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the firm.  

Solvay to grow in Brazil, sale of Indupa PVC asset near, says exec

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Belgium’s Solvay SA is revising its portfolio while pursuing organic growth and acquisitions following the integration of Rhodia SA this year. The plan that includes expanding in niche markets in Brazil where it’s strongest, while divesting from local operations like PVC where profits have disappointed.
“We’re getting out of businesses where other companies can do better than Solvay, and boosting our presence in areas where we are, or can be, stronger,” Gilles Auffret, executive committee member of Solvay Group and former chief operations executive at Rhodia, told Brazilian newspaper Valor Economico. 

MMI invests in its largest molding machine

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Officials of MMI Engineered Solutions Inc. showed off a large new Negri Bossi Bi-Power injection molding press at an open house Dec. 4 — part of an expansion by the automotive molder that signals the robust auto sector will keep investing in machinery.
MMI bought the press — its 14th molding machine and, with 2,000-metric tons of clamping force, its largest molding machine — to keep up with demand for its specialized returnable packaging for automotive and custom molded car and truck parts like fan shrouds, bezels and fender extensions. 

Plastic 'pale' stars in home brewing kit

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Two South Australian firms have joined forces to make home-brewed beer easier to produce and of better quality, thanks to plastic pails.Home brew is notoriously kept away from family and friends because its “beauty” is usually in the eye of the beholder only — but not anymore.
A do-it-yourself beer kit is now available for connoisseurs around the world. Gone are wooden kegs, steel kettles and glass bottles once used to ferment the amber liquid.

Wilsonart acquires lab-grade surface maker Durcon

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Wilsonart LLC acquired Durcon Inc., a Taylor, Texas-based company that manufactures epoxy-resin work surfaces and sinks for laboratories and research facilities, in a move to expand product offerings.
Durcon will operate as a new, independent business unit of Wilsonart, which makes and distributes high-pressure laminates and other engineered surfaces used in commercial and residential furniture, countertops and worktops.

Uflex to expand Polish films plant

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Indian flexible packaging manufacturer Uflex has announced it plans to double the capacity of its recently launched films plant near Poznan, Poland to expand its market penetration in Europe.  
This €60m Polish polyester film plant, now with a 36,000 tpa production capacity, was only launched in July 2012 by the Indian conglomerate’s Flex Films division. The Flex Films Europa plant is currently the only film manufacturing unit operated by Uflex in Europe.

European plastic recycling growing at steady pace

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Plastics Recyclers Europe confirmed steady growth of plastics recycling during its Annual Meeting 2013 which took place on the 21st and 22nd of November in Amsterdam and gathered more than 170 participants.
During this event the organisation celebrated the breakthrough of 100 members and now counts 114 compa- nies. The Management Committee has been reconfirmed by the Members and the President, Ton Emans, has been re-conducted for a new mandate.

Awards for German tube producers

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Advances in printing caught the eye of judges in the German Packaging Award 2013. In the cosmetics and hygiene category, the winners included Tubex Holding for its hybrid printing process, and Karl Höll for its FullCircleDesign tube.
Tubex’s process is an inline-pressure combination of flexographic and screen printing. This enhances 4-colour flexographic printing so that the finest colour nuances are now possible.

Self-Healing Polymer Could Be Key to Longer-Lasting Batteries

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A couple of months ago, we told you about a so-called Terminator polymer that could heal itself. Now, researchers at Stanford University are using a similar material to improve the durability of lithium-ion batteries so they don’t crack under the pressure of use.
Researchers in Stanford’s and the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory have developed a conductive self-healing polymer and used it to coat the electrode of a battery, which binds the electrode together and spontaneously heals tiny cracks that develop during battery operation.

Incoming NYC mayor backs polystyrene ban

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New York City's incoming mayor Bill de Blasio is no stranger to polystyrene and attempting to stop the use of foam product.
And while he had been mostly silent on the proposal by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to ban the use of food service PS in New York City restaurants, de Blasio told reporters recently that he supported the effort. His office did not return requests for comment from Plastics News, 

Future of KraussMaffei's Treuchtlingen plant still in the balance

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Although KraussMaffei Group has announced plans to close its injection molding machine components plant in Treuchtlingen, Germany, the company is still negotiating with the IG Metall union and the works council with a view to finding a mutually satisfactory solution as early as Nov. 29.
On Nov. 22, KraussMaffei management from Munich held discussions with representatives of the employer's association, the KM Treuchtlingen works council and the IG Metall union in Ingolstadt, according to local news reports.

Arburg breaks ground on future U.S. headquarters

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Germany-based injection molding machine maker Arburg Inc. is building a new U.S. headquarters, complete with offices, showroom, and training and machine and spare parts warehouse capabilities, in Rocky Hill, Conn.
The new 27,000-square-foot building is located about six miles from Arburg’s existing facility in Newington, Conn. Arburg owns the new location, and expects to occupy the facility in about one year.

Polystyrene food-service firm expands in Pennsylvania

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An expanded polystyrene packaging and tableware producer is nearing completion of a $3.7 million expansion at its Easton, Pa., plant.
Ecopax Inc. has installed a new thermoformer and EPS foam extruder this month and expects the new machinery to reach capacity by the end of the year. Ecopax vice president of operations Christina Wong said her firm’s capacity will increase by 50 percent for single-use containers, trays, plates and bowls that it sells to food service institutions, supermarkets and other clients.

Slow rise in recycling for EPS

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It's a question that comes up time and time again. Is expanded polystyrene (EPS) recyclable? The answer is yes, but it's a bit more complicated than other materials.   

While the lightness of the material provides plenty of benefits in use, it does pose a hindrance at its end-of-life. Earth 911 states on its website that even if a community recycles plastic #6, it may not accept EPS.

Plastic Material News

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Product reviews

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