PolyOne, a leading specialty compounder, launched a line of biopolymer compounds at this week’s National Plastics Exposition in Chicago. Patent-pending Resound compounds will be formulated with a minimum of 30 percent bio-derived content, and as much as 70 percent, Dr. Cecil C. Chappelow, vice president of innovation for PolyOne, told Design News in an interview. The biobased polymers that maybe used include PLA, PHB, PHBV as well as biopolyesters. Dr. Chappelow said he could not disclose the traditional plastics that PolyOne is studying. One logical candidate, however, is polycarbonate. Resound grades feature heat resistance (HDT) up to 120C (248F) and impact resistance up to 53 J/m (12 ft-lb/in). PolyOne’s goal is to develop bio compounds that will meet or exceed performance requirements for durable applications such as computer laptops, cell phones and auto components. Dr. Chappelow said the new compounds will process as well as traditional compounds.
PolyOne has developed a large portfolio of bioproducts, ranging from special colorants to thermoplastic elastomers. PolyOne is even working on a bio-based plasticizer that could replace phthalates in construction applications. The goal is to develop drop-in replacements that are competitive on a performance and total cost basis. Meanwhile, PolyOne retains a strong commitment to vinyl compounds. At a press conference today, PolyOne showed a PVC appliance part with a metallic appearance. The pre-colored part represented a significant savings over a painted part.
At the JEC Europe 2015 composites show in Paris last month, makers of composite materials, software, and process equipment showed off their latest innovations. This year's show saw some announcements related to automotive applications, but many of the improvements came in the world of aerospace.
The DuPont-sponsored Plastics Industry Trends survey shows engineers want improved performance in a broad range of plastics and better recycling technology. These concerns top even processing enhancements that improve productivity.
Plastics leader SABIC recently announced a global initiative to help its customers take advantage of additive manufacturing (AM) and also advance 3D printing (3DP) technologies in several application areas. The company's plans go way beyond materials, and also include design, processing, and part performance.
A theme that was reflected in several ways at NPE 2015 was the use of 3D printing to assist in, or improve on, injection molding, as well as improvements in 3D printing materials and processes that are making better functional prototypes and end-use parts.
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