Federal loan guarantees may be required to move some new bioplastics ventures from the lab to commercial reality. An article in the Wall Street Journal says that Micromidas, a California company that make plastics from raw sewage is having trouble finding $10 million in capital required to build a plant.
Novomer, a Cornell spinoff that converts industrial carbon dioxide into plastics, needs a $100 million cash infusion to move from pilot scale to commercialization.
Coming to the rescue could be a five-year-old U.S. Department of Energy loan-guarantee program for new environmentally friendly technologies. The program is expected to shift its focus in 2011 from solar and wind projects to less-developed enterprises.
Meanwhile, a corporate funded program to convert industrial wastewater to plastics seems to be gaining traction in Sweden.
Instead of sifting through huge amounts of technical data looking for answers to assembly problems, engineers can now benefit from 3M's new initiative -- 3M Assembly Solutions. The company has organized its wealth of adhesive and tape solutions into six typical application areas, making it easier to find the best products to solve their real-world assembly and bonding problems.
Many of the materials in this slideshow are resins or elastomers, plus reinforced materials, styrenics, and PLA masterbatches. Applications range from automotive and aerospace to industrial, consumer electronics and wearables, consumer goods, medical and healthcare, as well as sporting goods, and materials for protecting food and beverages.
Engineers trying to keep track of the ever-ballooning number of materials and machines for additive manufacturing and 3D printing now have some relief: a free searchable database with more than 350 machines and 450 different materials.
At JEC Europe Dow Automotive introduced a new ultra-fast, under-60-second molding cycle time for its commercial-grade VORAFORCE 5300 epoxy resin matrix for carbon composites. It's aimed at high-volume automotive manufacturing.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.