The SPE Library contains thousands of papers, presentations, journal briefs and recorded webinars from the best minds in the Plastics Industry. Spanning almost two decades, this collection of published research and development work in polymer science and plastics technology is a wealth of knowledge and information for anyone involved in plastics.
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Catalytic Technology and Controlled Chemical Release for Post-Harvest Preservation of Fruits and Vegetables
Roughly 1/3rd (1.3 billion tonnes) of the food produced in the world for human consumption gets wasted every year. Fruits and vegetables have highest wastage rates of almost 40-50%. This is partly due to ethylene action and improper storage and handling. Ethylene, a catalyst generated by climacteric fresh produce is responsible for their ripening. Ripened fruits have more risk of microbial spoilage due to increased sugar %. Improper handling, storage, lack of cold chain etc in post-harvest conditions further increases the loss. In the past, we have reported ?niche? technologies for fruit preservation, such as chemical agents responsible for adsorption and destruction of ethylene. In continuation, now we are introducing some more ?unique? technologies such as using a) Catalytic converters (of ethylene to ethylene oxide), b) Ethylene adsorbers and c) Halogen releasers. We believe that these simple and cost-effective techniques will be the trendsetters to reduce horticultural wastage considerably and in the end benefit the farmer, the retailer and also the consumer. Efficacy of these products was tested by using them as novel additives in flexible packaging, punnets etc. which are commercially used for storage and transport of various fruits and vegetables in which they were effective in reducing ethylene from the storage area. We also experimented use of these products by incorporating them in a plastic film and all through we could acquire considerable shelf life extension of both climacteric and non-climacteric fruits and vegetables. We firmly believe by using such value-added packaging post harvest horticultural losses will be considerably reduced and it can result in a service to mankind.
Extrusion Performance Fluids - Crucial in Maintaining Water-Cooled Extruder Efficiencies
Many manufacturers of water-cooled extrusion equipment typically recommend that either distilled water or properly-treated water [1,2] be used to control barrel zone heater/cooler temperatures. While many industrial water treatment professionals treat and maintain cooling towers, chill rolls and other Utility Water Systems in extrusion plants, few, if any, have attempted to solve the corrosion, fouling and mineral deposition issues typically experienced in extruder barrel cooling systems (Process Water Systems).
This paper summarizes our experiences over the past fourteen years developing and successfully applying Extrusion Performance Fluids (EPF) as safe and effective coolants in water-cooled extrusion applications. Key documented case studies and simple extrusion maintenance procedures will be discussed which form the basis for a pending US Patent  on EPF and its associated technologies.
Long Chain Branching of Polypropylene via UV Radiation: Effect of Coagent and Other Radiation Variables on Continuous Modification
Continuous photomodification of polypropylene (PP) has been conducted in order to scale up a previously developed batch process for commercialization purposes. Utilizing this process PP rheological properties were modified by incorporation of long chain branches (LCBs).
Trimethylolpropane triacrylate (TMPTA) was employed as a coagent along with benzophenone (BPH), which was the photoinitiator. The effects of TMPTA presence, BPH concentration, and radiation duration on viscoelastic properties and gel content were studied. Gel permeation chromatography (GPC) was used to confirm formation of LCBs in the photomodified PP.
A Study of Glass Spheres Incorporated into Extruded Polyethylene Films
Hollow glass microspheres were investigated as an additive in extruded low density polyethylene films. Advantages of this technology may include reductions in plastic material costs, thermal conductivity, packaging weight, density and processing costs. Monolayer films were processed on a blown film extrusion line and characterized for morphology, thermal and mechanical properties. Optical microscopy showed that the microspheres were intact and density was lower than the neat low density polyethylene films.
Marketing and Product Development Strategies in the Chemical Industry Using Dark Data & Data Sciences
The GDP contribution from the Industrial sectors is ~$25T, of which the Chemicals and Plastics Industry, is ~$4T in revenues. This traditionally product-centric industry is transforming into a market-facing growthmachine. While chemistry and product innovation will always be pillars of the industry's strength, prioritizationof the development efforts are shifting heavily towards marketing strategies and identification of attractive segments. However, Marketing and Segmentation strategies at chemical companies currently rely on the useof traditional methods such as expertise, relationships, customer feedback, sales calls, static market reports, strategy consultants and patent searches. On the other hand, the use of data, advanced data sciences andautomated intelligence is prevalent in the consumermarketingworld. This paper intends to open up and inspire possibilities in fully utilizing these advances in data sciences from the consumer space, and applying themto the industrial space, in tandem with the extraction of relevant dark data. Deep industry expertise can beaugmented by data sciences & big data analytics, mobile and social platforms and technology, to form a potent mix, which will catalyze this transformation.
Material Selection For Cost Effective Manufacturing: A Methodology for Technical Evaluation
This paper presents a methodology for the selection of thermoplastic materials in order to achieve the most cost effective manufacturing solution. Unlike conventional materials selection methods—which rely almost exclusively on quantitative performance data—this method relies on a comprehensive evaluation of cost, including material costs, processing costs, and the cost of secondary operations.
Barrier Packaging for Dry Food
Dry food packaging typically contains a combination of polyethylene resins to provide toughness and barrier with a sealant layer to provide a specific shelf life. Development of the materials and resulting structures requires fundamental knowledge of structure / property relationships as well as the ability to tailor properties for in-use performance. Dow has been developing both resins and novel testing methodology to help expedite the development process, focusing on the consumer needs and benefits.
Peelable - Resealable Films: FTIR Characterisation and Peel Strength
In the last decade, smart packaging has been an emerging field, which focuses on improving safety, ease of use and sustainability of food products. In this paper, enhancement in the ease of use is sought through the tailoring of a novel peelable-resealable structure. Therefore, multiple pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) resins were first screened through by measurement of their peel strength. In light of the Fourier transform infrared spectrums, key properties of the peelable-resealable structure are discussed and material properties correlated to peel strength behavior.
Preparation and Rheological Properties of Epoxy-Based Liquids with Adjustable Viscosities
Epoxy-based liquids with adjustable viscosities were prepared by curing a two-component resin mixture at variable mixing ratios and their rheological properties were then characterized using a parallel plate rheometer. The viscosity was found to decrease as the portion of amine compound component decreased. Moreover, the rheological properties of such liquids were found to be highly thermally sensitive. At last, the authors proposed a possible mechanism to explain the viscosity change at different resin mixing ratios.
The Effect of Multilayer Rheology on the Flow Distribution in a Coathanger Style Die
Multilayer coextrusion is a process in which two or more polymers are extruded and joined together in a feedblock or die to form a single structure with multiple layers. This paper will discuss the effect of experimentally measured multilayer rheology on the flow distribution in a coathanger style die.
Measurement of Transmittance and Reflectance Spectra of Edge-Lit 2-D Polymeric Light Guides
A commercially emerging type of lighting technology utilizing two-dimensional edge-lit polymeric light guide panels is described. Potential polymer-related engineering problems associated with these light fixtures are identified. One of these problems is the possibility of a color differences between panel surface regions close to and far from the light source. The theory and practice of a spectrophotometric method that can be used to assist material selection to solve this problem are described. Illustrative results are shown.
Continuous Devulcanization of Scrap EPDM Rubber with Supercritical CO2: Effect of Process Parameters on Devulcanized Rubber Properties
Scrap EPDM rubber crumb was continuously devulcanized using supercritical CO2 in an industrial-scale twin screw extruder. A reasonably high throughput extrusion process has been developed and the effect of processing conditions has been studied. A central composite design with two factors was used to study the effects of screw speed and feed rate on the sol and gel fractions, degree of devulcanization, and Mooney viscosity of devulcanized rubber.
Control of Heat Conduction Processes for the Improvement of Part Properties in the Two-Stage GITBlow Process
The GITBlow process, a combination of gas-assisted injection molding (“GIT”) and blow molding (“Blow”), allows the production of parts with complex functional geometries and thin-walled hollow spaces directly inside the mold. Part properties can be controlled by selective construction of characteristic part elements and modern methods for cooling control in the mold. Small variations of part geometry or of mold temperatures already show a positive influence on the resulting wall thickness distribution.
Foam Extrusion with Physical Blowing Agents – Engineering Approach
This paper introduces a new Engineering approach to improve and develop the manufacturing process of XPS Polystyrene form. The success in this process will trickle down to other foam processes to improve the productivity and energy savings.
Reliable Hot Tack Testing of Polyolefin Films
Measuring the strength of a seal while it is still in the semi-molten state is important in determining if a film is suitable to withstand high loads at high packaging speeds. Without high hot tack strength, the contents of the package may break through the seal during the filling process. In this report, we will utilize Six Sigma methodology to: compare two different separation force hot tack testing machines, identify key variables in testing, and develop a set of standard testing conditions.
Prediction of Powder Concentration for Filling Simulation of Metal Injection Molding
A full 3D finite volume analysis system has been developed to simulate a Metal Injection Molding (MIM) filling process. In the MIM industry, the so-called black lines are frequently observed in the surface inspection of the final sintering products. Such a critical appearance defect is attributed to powder-binder phase separation. Powder concentration is used as an indicator for phase separation. In this work, it is necessary to numerically predict the powder concentration distribution during mold filling and discuss the phase separation issue.
New Color & Effect Pigments and Trends for Plastics
This paper will review the newest color and effect pigments that have been recently introduced to the marketplace including features benefits and comparisons to traditional products that have been used in the past few years. The paper will also review color trends for teletronics, aviation, sporting goods and toys for 2010.
Developing Cost Effective Co-Extruded Film Structures for Flexible Packaging
Co-extrusion enables the combination of attributes of different polymeric resins to create films having unique and tailor-made properties. In this study we show that the proper selection and the correct placement of different polyethylene resins in co-extruded structures enables one to produce films having improved toughness and optical properties in a cost effective way. It was concluded that using single-site linear low density polyethylene in film structures makes this possible.
Rapid Heat Cycle Molding, Surface Topography and Visual Appearance of Injection Molded Parts. Research Work in Leoben in the Last 10 Years.
Different aspects on surface quality of injection molded parts have been researched in Leoben in the last decade. This paper will give a short overview on our research work, considering rapid heat cycle molding, surface topography and visual appearance of polymer part surfaces with special focus on weld lines, sink marks, and gloss differences, respectively.
Using One-Sided Constraints to Improve Prediction of Core Shift during Mold Filling Simulation
Uneven distribution of melt flow around a core pin during injection molding can result in core shift. Many real life injection molds establish one-side constraints for the cores then the core is free to deform in one direction but cannot deform in the opposite direction. In the article we present algorithms and results of mold filling simulations that take into account one-sided constraints on deformation of the mold cores.
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