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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
One-Step Electrochemical Treatment Of Metal Inserts For Tight Polymer-Metal Hybrid Applications
Tobias Kleffel, May 2018
One common method for the manufacturing of electronic systems with a high resilience is the encapsulation of metal inserts using assembly injection molding. Due to the exposure of such parts to different mediums such as oil or saltwater during use, ensuring tightness still is a challenge. This paper deals with the assembly injection molding of tight electronic systems using microstructures on the metal insert introduced by a one-step electrochemical treatment. It can be shown that the electrochemical treatment increases both the tightness and the strength of the bond between metal insert and polymer component. Furthermore, the effects of the electrochemical treatment on the surface and geometry of the metal insert are presented.
Thermoelectric Properties Of Open Cellular Polymer Templates Coated With 1D And 2D Carbon-Based Nanoparticles
Siu Ning (Sunny) Leung, May 2018
In this study, a novel technique was developed to fabricate organic thermoelectric (TE) materials with enhanced TE conversion efficiencies. The synergistic effects of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNT) and graphene nanoplatelets (GNP) as conducting nanofillers were investigated to enhance the TE properties of polymer nanocomposites. Polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) foams with open-cellular structures were employed as polymeric templates in combination with MWCNT and GNP as hybrid conducting fillers, to fabricate polymer nanocomposite foams for TE applications. The results of this study proved the template-assisted localization of conducting nanofillers within polymer matrices as an effective strategy to simultaneously tune all TE parameters of polymer nanocomposites and substantially promote their TE efficiency. Experimental results also revealed that utilizing hybrid nanofillers with optimized mixing ratio is beneficial for promoting the TE efficiency of polymer nanocomposite materials because of the synergistic effects of the 1D and 2D structures of the conducting fillers.
High Temperature Dielectric Film
Matthew Niemeyer, May 2018
A review of the key CTQ’s of high heat dielectric films and their relationship to the manufacturing process and electrical performance of a wound film capacitor. Clean energy, global CO2 reduction and the electrification of vehicles have been driving factors for the need for higher performing - higher temperature film products. SABIC has recently commercialized ULTEM UTF120 capacitor grade film, developed to meet the most stringent technical capacitor demands through a wide temperature range (-40 to +175 °C) and exhibits stable properties through temperature and frequency. Film is available for multiple applications requiring high temperature resistance during processing or end use.
Highly Filled Biochar/Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene/Linear Low Density Polyethylene Composites For Electromagnetic Interference Shielding
SUIYI LI, May 2018
Highly filled biochar/ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE)/linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) composites were prepared using extrusion and hot-compression methods. Bamboo charcoal (BC) carbonized at 1100 °C exhibited good electrical conductivity and had strong interfacial interactions with the polymer matrix. The addition of BC remarkably improved the electrical conductivity and electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding effectiveness (SE) of the composites; the composite with 80 wt.% BC had a conductivity of 107.6 S/m and an ultra-high EMI SE of 46.7 dB at 1500 MHz. The loading of BC did not severely affect the crystal structure of the UHMWPE/ LLDPE blend.
Mechanical Characterization Of Polycarbonate Reinforce With Woven Glass Fiber.
This work presents the physical and mechanical characterization of a polycarbonate reinforced with 4 % woven glass fiber oriented at 0/90° and ± 45° produced by film injection and compression molding process.Fiber alignment, volume fractions, and density were measure; these results showed an improvement of 141% in tensile strength for the specimens reinforced with 0/90º glass fiber, as compared to the specimens without reinforcement. The film injection-compression process reduces fiber misalignment in a range of 1.16° to 2.13°.This result proves the potential for the fiber-woven polycarbonate as a useful material for thermoplastic polymers. The production of composites by film injection-compression molding presents the advantage of being manufactured with faster production cycles than thermosets.
Correlation Of Chain Dynamics To Mechanical Properties Of High Performance Crosslinked Systems​
Shaw Hsu, May 2018
The merits of crosslinked polymers (thermosets such as epoxy, imine and phenolics) include high mechanical performance and dimensional stability especially at elevated temperatures. However, these attractive physical attributes are also the reasons making them extremely difficult to characterize. In our laboratory, we have used a combination of techniques (DSC, infrared and low field NMR) to clarify the underlying structure responsible for the macroscopic properties observed. DSC provides information regarding the onset curing temperature and the extent of curing. Both near and mid-infrared spectroscopy provide information regarding the chemical structures being formed. We found the low field NMR (LFNMR) to be extremely informative regarding segmental mobility of the crosslinked chains. This unconventional usage of NMR has shown to be effective in establishing the correlation between the spin lattice relaxation time and the mechanical properties obtained for the various types of crosslinks employed. We have analyzed two types of crosslinked systems, one based on phenolics and a second one based on well-characterized epoxies with known crosslink density. By fitting the spin lattice relaxation data at different temperatures to theory, the average activation energy for the molecular motion were obtained. Therefore, the increase in the activation energy to achieve mobility and the broadening of relaxation distribution can be determined quantitatively. The results of our study provide the foundation to analyze the crosslinking process and the resultant structure of high performance crosslinked systems.
Chasing The Bottom Of The Energy Landscape: Vapor Deposited Amorphous Fluorocarbons
Gregory McKenna, May 2018
One of the major challenges in the study of the behavior of glass-forming materials, including polymers, is to know the equilibrium behavior below the glass transition temperature Tg. This is due to the need for a fundamental understanding of the equilibrium behavior in order to have a baseline to the non-equilibrium response inherent in the deep glassy state where materials are used[1]. In the present work we describe experiments in which we have used vapor deposition methods to make extremely stable amorphous fluorocarbon polymer films which have fictive temperature reductions relative to the Tg of nearly 60 K[2]. Hence, they are deep into the energy landscape[3]. By making viscoelastic measurements on films of these materials one can establish upper bounds to the equilibrium relaxation times and, consequently test theories of the glass transition and potentially distinguish among different theories. In particular, one can compare the dynamics with those expected by the theories, but now far below Tg. Initial work suggests that, consistent with prior results [4] on an ancient amber material, theories that predict a divergence of time-scales at a finite temperature are not consistent with the present upper bound results. Rather it appears that there is a strong deviation of the response from, e.g., WLF behavior, towards an Arrhenius-like response, albeit with a high activation energy. [1] G.B. McKenna and S.L. Simon, "50th Anniversary Perspective: Challenges in the Dynamics and Kinetics of Glass-Forming Polymers," Macromolecules, 50, 6333-6361 (2017).[2] H. Yoon, Y.P. Koh, S.L. Simon and G.B. McKenna, "An Ultra-Stable Polymeric Glass: Amorphous Fluoropolymer with Extreme Fictive Temperature Reduction by Vacuum Pyrolysis," Macromolecules, 50, 4562-4574 (2017).[3] C.P. Royall, F. Turci, S. Tatsumi, J. Russo and J. Robinson, "The race to the bottom: approaching the ideal glass?" arXiv:171104739v1 [cond-mat.soft] 13 Nov 2017.[4] J. Zhao, S.L. Simon, G. B. McKenna*, "Using 20-million-year-old amber to test the super-Arrhenius behavior of glass-forming systems," Nature Communications, 4, 1783-1 - 1783-6 (2013).
Thermal Conductivity Enhancement Through Stretching Of Polyethylene-Graphene Nanocomposites
Brian Grady, May 2018
The effect of simultaneous alignment of polyethylene (PE) lamellae and graphene nanoplatelets (GnP) on thermal conductivity of PE-GnP nanocomposites is investigated. Such alignment is achieved by subjecting the composite to mechanical strain. Alignment of PE lamellae is quantified using wide-angle X-ray scattering measurements while graphene nanoplatelet alignment is quantified via polarized Raman spectroscopy. Measurements reveal that thermal conductivity (k) of the composite increases at a faster rate with applied strain compared to pure PE pointing to the beneficial effect of GNP alignment on k enhancement. At the maximum applied strain of 400% and using 10 wt% GnPs, a composite thermal conductivity of 5.9 W/mK is achieved representing an enhancement of ~12-fold over the unoriented pure polymer (k~0.5 W/mK), a ~4-fold increase over the unstretched filled polymer (1.5 W/mK) and a ~1.75-fold increase over the unfilled oriented polymer (3.5 W/mK)
Effect Of Resin Selection On Pore Formation Of Polyethylene Films
Wenyi Huang, May 2018
This paper reports the importance of resin selection on the pore formation of semicrystalline homopolymer polyethylene (PE) films by cold stretching at room temperature and the subsequent hot stretching at an elevated temperature. Five different PE resins with various crystallinities and molecular weights were evaluated by using differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), conventional gel permeation chromatography (GPC), light-scattering GPC, and X-ray techniques. Mercury porosimetry was employed to characterize the pore structure of PE porous films, and water vapor transmission rate (WVTR) was used to determine the breathability of these porous films. The result show that high crystallinity (> 0.96 g/cm3), high molecular weight distribution (Mw/Mn > 6) and high z-average molecular weight Mz (> 500,000) of PE resins are critical for the pore formation in PE films. The WVTR value of PE porous films can be as high as 345 g•mil /(100 inch2•day).
Melt-Mastication Of Isotactic Polypropylene For Improved Thermal And Physical Properties
Brian Cromer, May 2018
A new polymer processing technique called Melt-Mastication (MM) is presented as a useful method to fabricate isotactic polypropylene (iPP) with improved thermal and mechanical properties. Melt-Mastication is a low temperature mixing technique that subjects molten iPP to chaotic flow at temperatures between the melting and crystallization transitions thereby promoting flow induced crystallization. The resulting iPP assumes an unusual morphology that is highly crystalline (57% crystal volume fraction), melts at a temperature 10.3 K higher than conventionally processed iPP, and demonstrates melt memory after annealing at 200 °C. The crystal morphology by polarized optical microscopy and atomic force microscopy appears to be comprised of largely disorganized lamellae, with possible ordering in local regions. Melt-Masticated iPP demonstrates greatly improved compressive modulus (+77%) and strength (+40%). The enhanced thermal and mechanical properties are attributed to aspects of the crystal morphology produced by MM.
Numerical Modelling Of Complex Parison And Sheet Formation In Blow Molding Processes Using Blowview Software
zohir benrabah, May 2018
Z. Benrabah and Anna BardettiNational Research Council Canada Automotive and Surface Transportation Research Center75 de Mortagne Blvd., Boucherville, QC J4B 6Y4, CanadaE-mails: zohir.benrabah@cnrc-nrc.gc.ca; anna.bardetti@cnrc-nrc.gc.caABSTRACT: BlowView is an engineering 2.5D finite element simulation software, developed at NRC, dedicated to simulate conventional extrusion blow molding, twin-sheet extrusion blow molding, stretch blow molding and thermoforming processes. This versatile blow molding simulation software is highly automated, flexible and user-friendly, yet allows users in-depth analysis capabilities for a wide range of materials, including optimization and permeability. Extrusion blow molding, and twin-sheet extrusion blow molding, are extensively used in manufacturing automotive plastic fuel tanks (PFT). These processes consist of three main phases: parison/sheet formation, inflation and part cooling and solidification. The parison/sheet formation is the most critical stage, as the final dimensions and mechanical performance of the PFT is directly related to the initial extrudate shape, which often requires the use of advanced die shaping technologies such as: Vertical Wall Distribution System (VWDS), Partial Wall Distribution System (PWDS), Die Slide Motion (DSM), and/or a combination of all three. These technologies are all available in the BlowView software, and can be handled simultaniously and synchronized with the machine programming points. In order to predict the extrusion with sag and swell, BlowView uses a hybrid approach that couples fluid mechanics to represent the die flow, with solid mechanics to represent the parison/sheet behavior outside the die, and a phenomenological swell model to capture the die geometry effect. This approach permits avoiding instability issues encountered by traditional fluid mechanics, especially at high Weissenberg numbers. After extrusion, the parison/sheet inflation is predicted tacking into account all mold components and their respective position and displacements. The modelling capabilities of NRC’s BlowView software will be presented based on using an industrial case study of a PFT. Permeability and optimization results will be also illustrated.
Analysis of Newly-Developed Textured PTFE Gaskets Subjected to Creep Relaxation
Ali Gordon, May 2018
The ability of a gasket to maintain sealability over a long period of time is the primary consideration for pressure vessel and piping designers. While service conditions such as temperature, internal pressure, gasket stress, and the caustic nature of the transport media are all important parameters, factors such as the gasket material, gasket dimensions, and flange torque procedure have generally been viewed as the most influential. Viscoelastic gaskets are attractive as intermediate layers between bolted flanges because they conform to the inherent imperfections between mating flange faces. They display time-sensitive relaxation responses over the long term. Next generation gaskets, termed EPX and manufactured by Garlock, have been designed with a dual-face, raised honeycomb pattern to confer more rapid stabilization compared to existing non-textured products. Historically, a re-torque is conducted at approximately 24 hours after initial torqueing. The consequence of the secondary load is a significant boost in the load retention response, especially for more compliant materials. Preliminary studies reveal that the viscoelastic properties exhibited by ceramic-filled PTFE materials can achieve a nearly identical post-re-torque response with a one hour dwell in place of the day-long dwell. The gaskets having a textured-style (i.e., EPX), however, were found to require no re-torque whatsoever. Gasket efficiency, %, defined in earlier studies, is used to measure both stress relaxation and load carrying capability of gaskets. A design of experiments (DoE) approach is applied to characterize the factors that influence load relaxation response of the both candidate (EPX) and existing (Legacy) gasket styles. Experimental data are used to develop modeling constants associated with the Burger viscoelasticity model. With the use of finite element modeling, stress distributions within the gasket are revealed. The collection of efficiency measurement methods, approach to re-torque optimization, and modeling convey a novel framework that designers can invoke to facilitate improved flange performance.
Quantitative Evaluation Of Mar Visibility Resistance Of Polymer Films
Shuang Xiao, May 2018
Susceptibility to visible mar damage of polymers significantly affects their aesthetic appearance. Quantitative evaluation of mar damage on polymer surfaces is highly desired for the design of mar resistant polymers and structures. In this study, an effective mar testing and evaluation methodology is introduced that is capable of evaluating mar damage for white and transparent thin polymer films, which are the most difficult colors for mar detection. Here, the mar damage is imaged and evaluated based on the contrast differences between the marred area and virgin background along the mar path. It is found that mar contrast results obtained by this method show good correlation with the assessment by human eyes. This methodology provides a quantitative measure of mar that correlates well with “human perceptions through visualization”. This method of mar surface analysis can be a potential methodology employed to investigate the fundamental structure-property relationship between polymer material properties and mar behavior.
Processing Parameters Effect On Barrier Properties Of Nitrile Based Nanocomposite Membrane
Mohamed Zemzem, May 2018
The influence of processing parameters on barrier properties of nanocomposites was investigated. Elastomer nanocomposites consisting of nitrile rubber latex and clay nanoparticles were prepared by three techniques: Chemical dissolution, melt-mixing in an internal mixer and extrusion. Resistance to methanol were assessed using gravimetric method. It was observed that extruded material exhibited the highest chemical resistance. Small-angle X-ray scattering patterns indicated that this improvement was due to nanoparticle orientation in the structure. With the other techniques, a neat enhancement of solubility was spotted over the pure rubber. X-ray diffraction results related this aspect to the delamination of the clay nanoparticles. Moreover, when melt-mixing was adopted, improvements were also recorded proportionally to the increase of the torque as well as the residence time inside the mixer.
Active Packaging Film To Extend Shelf-Life Of Fresh Poultry
Ankush Gokhale, May 2018
A system comprising an antimicrobial compound, an interfacial agent and a vinyl acetate copolymer augments an oxygen barrier package to provide a viable active packaging solution to extend the shelf-life of poultry products. Fresh poultry is a perishable product with a short shelf-life. An antimicrobial-incorporated active packaging film can extend the shelf-life of poultry products and reduce retail and customer shrink substantially. This work provides an overview of the various factors that affect the shelf-life of poultry products, discusses the role of potassium sorbate as an effective antimicrobial agent, and elucidates its incorporation into and release kinetics from the package’s food contact layer.
Quantitative Characterization And Modeling Of Thin Film Conformability
Haiying Zhang, May 2018
In this paper we present a brief review of large body of publications related to conformability of multilayer system. Conformability of thin film with a curved geometry substrate on which the film is applied is commonly manifested in formation of blisters, wrinkles and other forms of delamination. The delamination is driven by elastic energy of thin film associated with the film deformation required by film application. A simple method of observation and quantitative characterization of delamination and its evolution in time is proposed. A continuous growth of delamination over many hours is observed on a number of plastic films. The time dependency of delamination results from an interplay between the stress relaxation within the film and viscous flow of adhesive that support the film deformation. Thus, the conformability of multilayer system is characterized by a combination of the film rigidity and relaxation as well as the time dependent strength of adhesive. A design of conformability tester, measurements of delamination growth, modeling of the observed process and an algorithm for quantitative characterization of delamination are presented. A practical application of the conformability tester is illustrated by ranking of a number of thin plastic films with respect to conformability.
Composition Dependent Charge Storage And Emi Shielding Performance Of Thermoplastic Elastomer Nanocomposites Containing Mwnts
Uttandaraman Sundararaj, May 2018
This study demonstrates the charge storage and electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielding performance of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) based nanocomposites containing various amounts of conducting multiwall carbon nanotubes (MWNTs). The functional properties of TPU nanocomposites were systematically designed by generating various degrees of interconnected networks of MWNTs in the TPU matrix. The dispersion and interconnected networks of MWNTs were assessed using rheology and direct current (DC) conductivity measurements. An enhanced charge storage (i.e., high real permittivity) and extremely small loss (i.e., loss tangent) were achieved at a low fraction of MWNTs (5.0wt%) in X-band frequency, whereas, large elimination of incoming microwave radiation was achieved via highly interconnected networks of dielectrically lossy MWNTs.
Innovation In Mature Markets: Understanding Global Trends Across The Value Chain Key And Accelerating Development
Narayan Ramesh, May 2018
Markets trends of cost reduction, sustainability & down-gaging drive the need for new and improved products. Development of such products requires a look across the entire value chain – an Asset to Market look. An emerging trend in the materials space is related to collection and management of data that enables knowledge creation. Management of this data and the knowledge generated is critical to accelerating research. This talk will focus on what is required for rapid product development, launch and knowledge transfer across a global organization to sustain market leadership. Key examples will be presented and will cover these trends.
Ways To Enhance Thermoelectric Properties Of Melt Mixed Polypropylene-Carbon Nanotube Composites
Petra Pötschke, May 2018
Melt-mixed polypropylene (PP) composites with singlewalled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs ) were used as thermoelectric materials which can convert a temperature difference between the two sides of the material into a thermovoltage. The effect of SWCNT content on Seebeck coefficient (S), electrical conductivity, and power factor was studied. In order to enhance these values for p-type composites, several strategies were applied. These involve (a) variation of the SWCNT modification, (b) incorporation of a high S copper oxide, (c) variation of melt-mixing conditions, and (d) addition of an ionic liquid. To generate n-type composites, additives like polyethylene glycol (PEG) and a non-ionic surfactant polyoxyethylene 20 cetyl ether were simply added during the melt-mixing procedure, inducing a switching from positive to negative S values in the pressed films. Finally, two prototype thermoelectric generators using both, p- and n-type PP based materials, could be manufactured.
Exploiting Capillary Forces In Filled Plastics: Electrically Conductive Plastics By Bonding Copper Filler With Molten Solder
Sachin Velankar, May 2018
We test whether the electrical conductivity of copper-polystyrene composites can be improved by adding a metal solder alloy during blending. Copper-in-polystyrene composites prepared by melt-blending have poor electrical conductivity. Addition of a flux (a compound commonly used in soldering) during blending is found significantly to improve the conductivity. A further large increase in conductivity was obtained by adding molten solder during composite preparation. The mechanism of this improvement is that the solder bonded the copper particles together into large aggregates that percolated throughout the sample. We examined the effects of the volume ratio of solder to copper particles on electrical conductivity and the composite morphology. If sufficient solder was added, the copper particles become welded together by the solder to form a self-supporting metal network, and a conductivity of ~500 S/m was realized at a metal loading of only 20 vol%. With insufficient solder, large but non-percolating structures of solder-bound copper particles appeared, and the corresponding blends had lower conductivity. While most of the samples were prepared by hand-blending, we verify that the same approach of improving conductivity can be applied using a Brabender batch mixer.

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