These tiny components are part of a medical device used in cardiovascular repair procedures. Molded from Torlon Polyamide-imide, they have an interior diameter of 0.038 inches, an outer diameter of 0.0715 inches and a side hole measuring 0.015 inches, according to Scott Herbert, president of RapidWerks, which molded the parts using Battenfeld Microsystem 50 presses. He estimates that molding these types of parts costs 30 times less than machining them from stainless steel. Torlon provides the necessary strength. "Since the component operates at several thousand rpms under a load, we needed a low-friction material that provided exceptional strength and wear resistance," Herbert says. RapidWerks is based in Pleasanton, CA. For more information, go to http://rbi.ims.ca/4922-505.
Dow Chemical and several other companies have launched a program in Omaha, Neb. to divert about 36 tons of plastics from landfills in its first phase, and convert it into energy used for cement production.
Both traditional automation companies and startups are developing technologies to improve processes on the factory floor, while smart sensors and other IoT-related technologies are improving how products are handled during transport and across the supply chain.
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