SPE Library

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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Conference Proceedings
Product Advancements in ABS Metal Plating for Automotive Applications
Abboud Mohammed, Robert Hooker, Jinhwa A. Chung, Frank Eisenträger, Eugen Wiedel, May 2014
The need for automotive exterior chromed applications with excellent surface appearance and good scratch/scuff resistance is well known. Typical exterior chrome applications (grilles and wheel covers) require no surface defects such as pits, scratches and blushes upon initial factory installation and over ten years field performance without delamination, blisters, or cracks. Initial quality often becomes a compromise between what the Tier can actually produce and what the OEM will accept for saleable vehicles. On the other hand, durability often becomes a compromise between what the OEM will warrant and what the customer judges as poor quality. Recent advancements in the field of Acrylonitrile- Butadiene-Styrene (ABS) and ABS+Polycarbonate (ABS+PC) blends by Styrolution have allowed for such a system that with the proper design and tooling considerations allows one to more closely match all of these expectations. Styrolution, the Nr. 1 styrenics supplier globally, is a joint venture created in October 2011 between Ineos and BASF is combining the expertise of two leading global suppliers. Building on a long tradition, Styrolution intends to contribute to the improvement of the Electroplating technology through material innovation, better surface adherence, reject rate reduction and manufacturing cost optimization. Examples of these contributions are presented in this paper.
Chemical Resistance Advantages of Tritan™ Copolyesters for Medical Applications - Oncology Drug Case Study
Yubiao Liu, Lea C. Paslay, Roger Martin, May 2014
Changing fitness for use requirements for the next generation of medical devices have significantly increased the need for higher performing plastics with improved chemical resistance. For example, heightened awareness of hospital-acquired infections (HAIs) has resulted in the increased use of medical disinfectants which can cause cracking or discoloration of plastic medical devices. In addition, the continual effort to advance medicine has led to the development of new oncology drugs and oncology drug delivery devices. These oncology drugs have been found to cause cracking, crazing and hazing in certain plastics. With these trends in mind, the chemical resistance of common medical grade thermoplastics was tested against various disinfectants, oncology drug carrier solvents and actual oncology drugs. These studies illustrate that Eastman Tritan™ copolyesters exhibit excellent chemical resistance to meet the changing needs of the medical device market.
Evaluating the Interfacial Shear Strength of Basalt Fibre Reinforced Polypropylene Matrix Composites
Christoph Burgstaller, Ramune Zykaite, Felix Klein, Wolfgang Stadlbauer, May 2014
The aim of this work was to investigate the interfacial shear strength of basalt fiber polypropylene matrix composites via two different methods. The methods applied here were the microdebond test as a direct measurement and the use of Rule-of-Mixtures models to evaluate the macromechanical properties. We found, that it is possible to yield results from both methods, which are in good accordance. Furthermore, while the assessment of the interfacial properties via the microdebond test is a direct method, the influences of preparation and handling are obvious. The calculation of the interfacial shear strength from macromechanical test needs higher effort, but therefore also more interfaces are evaluated at once. Nevertheless, both methods can be useful for application when the respective constraints are taken into account.
Effect of Molecular Structure on the Heat Seal Performance of Polypropylene Films
Redouane Boutrouka, Sayed H. Tabatabaei, Abdellah Ajji, May 2014
Three polypropylene resins (homopolymer, ethylene copolymer and elastomer based ethylene copolymer) were selected to investigate the effect of molecular structure on the heat seal performance of polypropylene films. The molecular structure of the resins was analyzed using dynamic rheological measurements and gel permeation chromatography (GPC). Thermal analysis was also performed to determine crystallinity and melting points. Heat seal test was conducted on multilayer cast films and it was found that the seal initiation temperature (SIT) and seal strength depend on the ethylene comonomer content, crystallinity, and molecular weight. The metallocene based resin having low branching content and narrow molecular weight distribution showed the lowest SIT.
Antibacterial Properties of Electrospun Fibers of PCL/Clove Bud Powder
Hanan Abdali, Abdellah Ajji, May 2014
The antimicrobial properties of essential oils and other plant extracts have been known for many years and have been used against a wide variety of bacterial pathogens as well as several fungi. The purpose of this study is to investigate and compare the antimicrobial activities of various ground powdered plants such as sage, clove bud, clove leaf, lemongrass, black mustard seed, wild mint leaf, and thyme leaf against E. coli (DH5 ?). The clove bud powder showed the highest antimicrobial activity compared to the other ground plants used in this study. The minimum inhibitory concentration of the clove bud powder was measured and then its antimicrobial activity was monitored for the electrospun PCL and clove bud powder blends dissolved in a mixture of (DCM:DMF) (50:50) v/v. The antimicrobial activity of the PCL and clove bud fibers was assessed using dynamic method.
Antimicrobial Activity of PCL/ZnO Electrospun Nanofibers
Hajer Rokbani, Abdellah Ajji, May 2014
PCL/ZnO nanocomposite fibers were prepared using the electrospinning process for antibacterial applications. The morphological-characterization of the electrospun nanofibers was carried out using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The SEM images showed that the zinc oxide nanoparticles formed big agglomerates on the surface of the nanofibers. The average diameter of these nanofibers was around 390 nm. The antimicrobial efficiency of these nanocomposite fibers against E. coli (DH5 ?) was also evaluated using the dynamic method. The antibacterial results showed that the addition of zinc oxide nanoparticles reduced slightly the growth of E. coli on PCL/ZnO nanofibers.
Lightweight Styrenics for Automotive applications
Jinhwa A. Chung, Abboud Mohammed, Robert Hooker, May 2014
The potential to light-weight Acrylonitrile-Butadiene- Styrene (ABS) and Acrylonitrile-Styrene-Acrylate (ASA) thermoplastics has been studied using various weight reduction technologies. One category includes density reduction of fixed dimensions by partially displacing polymer with gas or air. Chemical foaming agents (CFAs), MuCell® microcellular foaming [1], and glass bubble (GB) compounding are the most well-known technologies. The other category is the thin-wall injection molding. In both cases, acceptable balance of weight reduction and mechanical properties in finished parts has to be achieved. In this study, the changes of mechanical properties through CFAs, GBs, and thin-wall technologies are described.
Moisture Performance of Wood-Plastic Composites Reinforced with Extracted and Delignified Wood Flour
Yao Chen, Nicole Stark, Mandla Tshabalala, Yongming Fan, Jianmin Gao, May 2014
This study investigated the effect of using extracted and delignified wood flour on water sorption properties of wood–plastic composites. Wood flour (WF) extraction was performed with three solvent systems: toluene/ethanol (TE), acetone/water (AW), and hot water (HW); delignification was conducted using sodium chlorite/acetic acid solution. A 24 full-factorial experimental design was employed to determine the effects of treatments and combinations of treatments. WF/HDPE composites for testing were manufactured using extrusion and injection molding. Compared with composites containing untreated WF, composites produced with extracted WF had lower water absorption rates and composites containing delignified WF had higher water absorption rates.
Diffusion Coefficient Modeling in Polyester Barrier Materials: Applications of Infinite Series Solutions
Steven K. Burgess, Robert Kriegel, William J. Koros, May 2014
While transport performance evaluation of new polyester resins can be accomplished through gravimetric or pressure-decay kinetic sorption experiments, estimation of model parameters can be challenging. Accurate diffusion coefficient determination is particularly difficult, as applications of the time-dependent diffusion equation yield non-intuitive infinite series solutions. Furthermore, complex diffusion processes often produce intractable models which require either short- or long-time approximations for parameter estimation. The current work circumvents such approximations by describing a modeling methodology useful for fitting complex infinite series solutions directly to experimental kinetic sorption data. Two specific modeling cases pertaining to polyester films are used to validate the methodology.
Reactive Modification of High Density Polyethylene in a UV-Initiated Process
Pouyan Sardashti, Costas Tzoganakis, Alexander Penlidis, May 2014
Rheological properties of a high density polyethylene resin (HDPE) were modified by promoting long chain branching (LCB) through a novel photoinitiated reactive extrusion process (REX). Surface response methodology based on a central composite experimental design was employed with three processing variables, namely, photoinitiator concentration, polymer throughput, and extruder screw speed. The linear viscoelastic properties measured through oscillatory shear experiments indicated addition of LCB up to 0.055 branches per 1000 monomer units. The zero shear viscosity (?o) increased to a maximum of 11,600 Pa.s from a starting value of 1,900 Pa.s. Similarly, the average polymer relaxation time (?) increased from 0.05 s to 4 s. Both molecular weight (MW) and molecular weight distribution (MWD) slightly shifted toward higher values. However, the breadth of the distribution was not affected significantly.
Development of a Capacitive Transducer for Dimensions Prediction in Polymer Extrusion
Yu Cheng, Ka Tsai Fung, Furong Gao, May 2014
On-line quality monitoring of the polymer extrusion is of great importance for process monitoring and product quality control. In view of the shortcomings of the existing hardware-based sensors, a novel low-cost capacitive transducer (CT) has been designed for polymer extrusion. In this project, the developed capacitive transducer has been successfully applied for thickness and diameter prediction in polymer extrusion. Experiments with various extrusion products show that the proposed transducer features broader application and the prediction results are quite accurate and robust. Therefore, this research paves the way for on-line quality monitoring and closed-loop quality control of polymer extrusion.
The Effect of Immiscibility on Biobased PLA/PHBV Foams
Qi Guan, Reza Rizvi, Hani Naguib, May 2014
Biodegradable polymers are currently a critical global research topic as they may potentially serve as replacement to conventional petroleum based plastics. One key strategy to widen its range of application potential is by improving its physical and mechanical properties. Such characteristics can be engineered by blending two polymers of desirable properties together and by inducing a cellular morphology in the pure polymer or blend with the aid of a foaming agent. This paper examines the effect of blending PLA and PHBV on their overall miscibility as well as the effect of their miscibility on the resultant foam fabricated using carbon-dioxide as a blowing agent. PLA and PHBV blends were manufactured in various compositions via compounding and foamed, and their physical, mechanical and morphological properties were characterized. The results indicated that although PLA and PHBV are immiscible, the addition of small quantities of PHBV (at 15wt%) lead to a finer and more homogenous cellular morphology.
Paper Plastic Composites from Recycled Disposable Cups
Jonathan Mitchell, Robert Dvorak, Edward Kosior, Chris Cheeseman, Karnik Tarverdi, Luc Vandeperre, May 2014
The majority of disposable cups are made from paper plastic laminates (PPL) which consist of high quality cellulose fibre with a thin internal polyethylene coating. There are limited recycling options for PPLs which has contributed to disposable cups becoming a high profile, problematic waste. In this work disposable cups have been shredded to form PPL flakes and these have been used to reinforce polypropylene to form novel paper plastic composites (PPCs). Samples were characterised using mechanical analysis and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The work demonstrates that PPL disposable cups have potential to be beneficially reused as reinforcement in novel polypropylene composites.
Pipe Analysis for a Long, Deep Directionally Bored Installation under an Active Airfield in Portland, Oregon
Tom Marti, Richard B. Botteicher, May 2014
Horizontal directional drilling (HDD) is a method of installing pipelines under obstacles without the need to excavate them. Used successfully to cross all types of impediments, a bore is directionally guided under the obstacle using a steerable drill. A pipeline is then pulled back through this excavation. Installation stresses on the product pipe when inserted into the borehole can be the limiting design factor for selecting pipe material, size, wall thickness, and joint configuration. These stresses may take precedent over traditional design parameters like long term hydrostatic strength or external loading capacity. This case study of a long and deep HDD insertion under an active runway and airfield at the Portland, Oregon International Airport provided a unique opportunity to compare common prediction techniques for stress estimates on thermoplastic pipe to what was experienced during the actual installation.
P.Y. 229: A Novel Pigment for Lead and Diarylide Replacement in Plastics
Thomas Chirayil, Roger A. Reinicker, May 2014
A new yellow pigment is developed to replace lead chromate and diarylide based yellow pigments in the plastics industry. Pigment Yellow 229 is a red shade yellow based on mono-azo chemistry and is free of heavy metals and halogens. This yellow pigment has high strength, heat stability, opacity, is non-warping, and non-bleeding in a masterbatch production. Formulators coloring plastics can select this pigment for indoor applications. This paper will discuss the properties of the new yellow pigment and compare the coloristic properties against lead chromate, diarylide and mono-azo based yellow pigments.
Characterizing the Melting Behavior of Different Shaped Polymer Bulk Solids by Utilizing a Model Experiment with an Optical Measuring System
Christian Kneidinger, Gernot Zitzenbacher, Manuel Laengauer, Keyan Liu, Juergen Miethlinger, Georg Steinbichler, May 2014
The solids conveying and the melting behavior of polymers in single screw plasticizing units are crucial factors for further processing steps. This work deals with the melting behavior of different shaped polymer bulk solids, which is characterized by a new method that uses a model experiment comparable to Tadmor's “drag induced melt removal” model. The melting behavior is characterized with an optical measuring system. Finally, the results are compared to the temperature development and the mass flow rate of a single screw plasticizing unit. The results show that the shape and size of the granules are important factors for the melting process in single screw plasticizing units. Virgin material melts much faster than cylindrical shaped pellets.
Effects of Painting on the Mechanical Properties of Injection-Molded Plastics
David E. Palmer, May 2014
Paint can have significant effects on the mechanical properties of plastic substrates. The selection of a paint system that is not properly matched to a given plastic substrate can lead to premature failure. While anecdotal accounts are plentiful, quantitative data regarding effects of coating on plastics is relatively scarce. This paper describes the effect of a high-solids acrylic topcoat paint, with either of two different adhesion promoters or no adhesion promoter, on the mechanical properties of four different plastic substrates: general-purpose acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS), high-impact ABS, weather-resistant acrylonitrile-styrene-acrylate (ASA), and mineral-filled polyethylene ionomer/polyamide-6 blend.
Development and Characterization of Bio-Based PA Composites for Electronic Packaging Applications Using Micro Fillers
Hani Naguib, Shahriar Ghaffari Mosanenzadeh, Yang Zhou, Gengyu Xu, Siu N. Leung, May 2014
Since electronic devices are constantly becoming smaller and more powerful [1,3], heat dissipation plays a very important role in electronic packaging applications. By using highly thermal conductive materials, it is possible to manage the heat dissipation on electronics to improve their efficiency. In addition, it is possible to avoid the use of mechanical fans by avoiding the heat sink cooling method. Thus, electronics can be made cheaper, lighter, and more compact [4-8]. Recycling of electronics is also another concern because millions of devices are used and produced every day. This research is aimed at making a polymeric composite that has high thermal conductivity, is electrically isolative, and is bio-based: a suitable as a replacement candidate for current electronic packaging materials. In this study, Polyamide (PA) with at least 60% bio-based content in composite with hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) was studied. Significant improvement in thermal conductivity was found relating to the size of conductive network, which has direct relationship with numbers, length, and direction of thermal pathways, rather than amount of filler particles.
Mechanical Considerations of Textiles Applied as Geotubes for Coast Erosion Control and Shoreline Protection
Carlos R. Rios-Soberanis, Jose A. Rodriguez-Laviada, Emilio Perez-Pacheco, May 2014
Nowadays geotextiles play a significant part in coastal protection and erosion prevention design and maintenance techniques. The growth in their use worldwide as geotubes for recovering damaged coastal due to its easiness of manipulation and excellent mechanical properties has been extraordinary. The focus of this paper is on better understanding of the importance of the textile architecture/geometry and the mechanical properties when applied as geotubes for sand recovery. The paper provides an overview of the current erosion in the Yucatan coast and the solutions shoreline protection as well as the effect of geotextile architecture on mechanical behavior.
Improvement of Replication Fidelity in Injection Moulding of Nano Structures Using an Induction Heating System
Stefano Menotti, Hans N. Hansen, Giuliano Bissacco, Matteo Calaon, Peter T. Tang, May 2014
In today’s industry, applications involving surface pattering with sub-?m scale structures have shown a high interest. The replication of these structures by injection molding leads to special requirements for the mold in order to ensure proper replication and an acceptable cycle time. A tool insert with functional surface geometry in the sub-micrometer range was produced using aluminum anodization and subsequent nickel electroforming. For the complete replica of the pattern, elevated mold temperatures are required. For this purpose a new mould set-up was developed, which allows rapid heating of the cavity wall by an induction heating system. The capability of the injection molding process to replicate the patterned surfaces into polycarbonate was investigated. Process optimization was carried out in terms of mold temperature/time variation and injection velocity. The replicated surfaces were quantitatively characterized by atomic force microscopy comparing the measurement in the nickel insert with the corresponding polymer nano-features. The experimental results show that the use of the induction heating system is an efficient way to improve the pattern replication.

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