INNOVATIONS BLOG

More Plastic... Can Mean Less Waste?

Posted by NOVATION Staff on Oct 30, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Plastics manufacturers and their customers in the European Union are under constant pressure to reduce the volume of plastics used in packaging, not least by the 2004 EU packaging and packaging waste directive. However, new research from Denkstatt, an Austrian environmental sustainability solutions think tank, has indicated that increasing the use of plastic in food packaging in a smart way can reduce spoilage in food and drink products, reducing waste. It is the latest salvo in a long debate over the value of packaging — with packagers having been on the defensive for a decade, arguing that their output, by protecting products, reduces waste flows. And Europe is facing a big problem with food waste. More than 100 million metric tons of food was wasted in the EU during 2012, according to a European Commission study released last year. As a result, the Commission released a policy paper encouraging EU member states to develop food waste prevention plans, with an option that they reduce food waste by 30 percent overall by 2025.

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Topics: Industry News

New TPE Material Approved for Medical Use...

Posted by NOVATION Staff on Oct 29, 2015 1:39:37 PM

Polymax Thermoplastic Elastomers Inc. announced that it has received USP Class VI approval for a new TPE material designed for use in medical and biopharmaceutical applications. MT-1205I was developed to address the increasing demand for medical TPE tubing applications, the company said. The transparent elastomer is a high-purity compound with low leachables and extractables required for ensuring patient safety. Due to the material’s flexibility, durability, neutrality and recyclability, it is a desirable alternative to PVC and thermoset rubber for medical tubing. It also provides less gas permeability and more design flexibility than silicone, at a lower cost.

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Topics: Industry News

Specialty Plastic's Help Amputees...

Posted by NOVATION Staff on Oct 28, 2015 10:07:20 AM

S&E Specialty Polymers LLC has developed a thermoplastic elastomer that combines softness with memory and rigidity to meet the demands of a swim dive fin for amputees. The Lunenburg, Mass., company said the customized TPE has the proper durometer to prevent chafing but rigid enough to allow a strong push in the water and to stand on itself without deforming. Other benefits are neutral buoyancy, heat resistance and availability in a range of colors.

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Taking 3-D Printing... Beyond the Prototype!

Posted by Scott Baxter on Oct 16, 2015 8:30:00 AM

Additive manufacturing — also known as 3-D printing — is coming out of rapid prototyping and moving into the assembly line for end-use production. Industries like automotive, aerospace and medical are already using it to make products for end users. Last November, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory installed parts 3-D printed by Stratasys onto one of its satellites bound for outer space. France’s Airbus is also using Stratasy’s production-grade printers to print flight parts for its new A350 XWB airplanes: the first of these planes delivered in December 2014 had more than 1,000 3-D printed parts installed in it.

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Topics: Industry News

Polymer Bank Notes...

Posted by NOVATION Staff on Oct 15, 2015 9:44:00 AM

The move follows the move in 2013 to make 5 pound and 10 pound banknotes from polymer. The current polymer notes are around 15 percent smaller than the current paper notes. The new 20 pound notes will also keep their traditional look, with a portrait of the Queen on the front. The character for the new note will be announced in spring 2016 and the new note issued by the end of 2020.

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Plastic Eating Worms...?

Posted by NOVATION Staff on Oct 14, 2015 12:41:09 PM

Did you know the research behind that study on expanded polystyrene eating worms was originally inspired by storage troubles in a Chinese kitchen? Wei-min Wu, who leads the widely reported Stanford University project on plastics-eating worms, told Plastics News that he is building on his Chinese collaborators’ research initiated at China’s Beihang University on waxworms breaking down polyethylene bags. In a recent interview with New York-based The China Press, Wu explained that the Beihang research team started the project more than a decade ago. The idea came from team lead Jun Yang, who noticed little holes on the plastic bags he used to store grains (such as millet and wheat flour) in his kitchen. He also noticed little worms and moths in the affected grain. From there, he set out to conduct research on insects’ digestion of plastics.

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Topics: Industry News

3D Printing Silicone Technology is here...

Posted by NOVATION Staff on Oct 6, 2015 11:03:45 AM

WACKER, the Munich-based chemical group, has developed a method that allows silicone articles to be produced by 3D printing which so far, has only been possible with plastics and metals. A robot deposits tiny droplets from a nozzle side by side, to build up the article layer by layer. Then the silicone is vulcanized with UV light. The homogeneous objects that are produced have virtually smooth surfaces. The material is biocompatible, heat resistant and transparent – opening up new industrial applications in automotive manufacturing, medical technology, household appliances, and optics. Experts are predicting a huge market for 3D printing with silicones. WACKER, the Munich-based chemical group, has developed a method that allows silicone articles to be produced by 3D printing which so far, has only been possible with plastics and metals. A robot deposits tiny droplets from a nozzle side by side, to build up the article layer by layer. Then the silicone is vulcanized with UV light. The homogeneous objects that are produced have virtually smooth surfaces. The material is biocompatible, heat resistant and transparent – opening up new industrial applications in automotive manufacturing, medical technology, household appliances, and optics. Experts are predicting a huge market for 3D printing with silicones.

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Topics: Industry News