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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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Sustainability
Various topics related to sustainability in plastics, including bio-related, environmental issues, green, recycling, renewal, re-use and sustainability.
GLASS FIBER REINFORCED ENGINEERING PLASTICS SIZING AN ESSENTIAL COMPONENT FOR PERFORMANCE
Jaap van der Woude, Piet Leegstra, May 2012
Fiber glass reinforced engineering plastics are increasingly important construction materials in transportation, electrical and other field applications. With the use of fiber glass reinforcements, certain material properties such as stiffness, strength and temperature stability are significantly improved. Combined with the base plastics, attractive material properties are obtained making them suitable for very demanding applications. Traditional performance attributes such as mechanical and environmental properties, reductions in total part cost as well as lightweight benefits allow these materials to provide answers to more complex applications, while meeting lightweight, recyclability, food contact and other requirements. It is essential to use the right fiber glass product with the right sizing specific to the application. Sizing provides a powerful solution for many processes and performance attributes of short fiber compounds and allows the final product to meet a variety of additional requirements. In this paper, the latest developments in glass fiber reinforcement will be reviewed, focusing on some of the most important engineering plastics such as polyamide, polyester and others. It will be demonstrated how very small amounts of glass fiber sizing can be very effective in realizing performance attributes over a wide range of requirements. In addition, examples will show how glass fiber reinforcements can greatly enhance the performance of certain biopolymers.
HYDROCARBON FUEL OBTAIN FROM MUNICIPAL WASTE PLASTICS USING STAINLESS STEEL REACTOR
Moinuddin Sarker, Mohammad Mamunor Rashid, Sadikur Rahman, May 2012
Waste plastics usages are increasing all over the world every day. People are consuming plastics in their daily life for all necessary purposes. After they are used all plastic become garbage and its goes to land fill or incineration facilities. It’s creating environmental problem. Waste plastic can be transform into alternate or renewable energy for electricity or feedstock refinery. The thermal degradation process applied with mixture waste plastics of high density polyethylene (HDPE-2), low density polyethylene (LDPE-4), Polypropylene (PP-5) and Polystyrene (PS-6) using stainless steel reactor has been successful in converting into liquid fuel. The polymer has been selected for the experiment 100% HDPE, LDPE, PP and PS by weight. The temperature used for degradation ranges from 150-400 °C and the experiment takes about was 5 -6 hours. The obtain products are liquid fuel, light gas and black carbon residue. Various techniques such as, (Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectrometer, FT-IR and DSC) are used for obtain the analysis of the fuel purposed. GC/MS result indicates hydrocarbon compound in the produced fuel ranges from C3-C28 and also present C1-C4 light gases. Also further fractional distillation process was used to obtain different 5 (Gasoline, Naphtha, Aviation, Diesel and Fuel Oil) category liquid fuel by using different temperature profiles. All of the fraction fuels have different carbon range and contain long chain hydrocarbon like alkane and alkene and some aromatic compound.
HYDROLYTIC DEPOLYMERIZATION OF PET DURING EXTRUSION
Tahereh Mousavand, Maryam Dini Pierre J. Carreau, Pascal Hubert, Musa R. Kamal, May 2012
Depolymerization of PET to high molecular weight oligomers could introduce opportunities to re-use PET waste via chemical recycling. Hydrolysis of PET in the presence of water/steam was carried out in a twin screw extruder, at barrel temperatures of 265°C and 300°C with screw speeds of 20, 60 and 200 rpm. The extruded products were characterized to determine intrinsic viscosity (IV) of samples as well as thermal properties (DSC) and rheological behavior. Proton nuclear magnetic resonance (HNMR) analysis was used to estimate carboxyl end group content. The results showed that the average molecular weight (Mw) of extruded polymer was reduced to less than 10,000 g/mol
IMPROVED UTILIZATION OF CO-PRODUCTS FROM BIOFUEL INDUSTRIES IN NEW MATERIALS USES: A MOVE TOWARDS SUSTAINABLE BIOREFINERY
Amar Mohanty, S. Vivekanandhan, Nima Zarrinbakhsh, Manjusri Misra, May 2012
Ever increasing energy demands, instability and uncertainty of petroleum/fossil fuel sources, and concern over global climate change have led to resurgence in the development of alternative energy that can replace fossil transportation fuel. Biomass conversion into biofuels, results a huge amount of residues or downstream products called as co-products such as distillers’ dried grains with solubles (DDGS), protein meals, crude glycerol, hemicellulose and lignin. As the production of biofuel continues to grow, surplus amounts of co-products become a critical issue and new value addition is needed for their effective utilization. A successful biorefinery begins with the productive usage of all components of biological feedstocks for value-added fuels, chemicals or materials that parallels the traditionall approach used in “petro-refineries”. Still biorefienry is risky investment, with respect to commercial benefits and finding value added uses for their co-products creates economic returns and lead to their sustainability. Thus present articles summaries the prospects of improved utilization of co-products from biofuel industries for new industrial applications.
IMPROVING PACKAGE TRACEABILITY, MARKETABILITY, AND SUSTAINABILITY WITH DIGITAL DECORATING
Chris DeMell, Chris Sobasze, Amy Swab, May 2012
The advent of piezo-based digital decorating enables marketers to deliver variable data, high impact graphics, and micro-targeted marketing with a single technology. Date coding, lot coding and traceability- back to the product’s origin- are now possible, enabling companies to satisfy increasingly stringent FDA requirements. And with no changeovers needed, marketers can economically create regional or store-level campaigns, delivering unique messages to minute market segments. Those messages are certain to pack a punch with near photographic quality images. Better yet, direct-to- package printing improves sustainability by eliminating labels, films and other consumable materials.
INVESTIGATION OF HIGH POWER ULTRASONICS FOR DEPOLYMERIZATION OF POLYLACTIC ACID
David Grewell, Gowrishankar Srinivasan, May 2012
This research work explores the feasibility of ultrasonics to recycle lactic acid by depolymerizing. Post consumer PLA chopped up to 1mm2 was exposed to high power ultrasonics with water or methanol as the suspension media. The treatments were carried out in the presence of organic and ionic salts of alkali metals such a potassium carbonate and zinc chloride as the catalysts. The treatments were replicated by replacing ultrasonics with Hot water bath as the energy source. Analysis with HPLC indicated PLA to Lactic acid conversion was achieved with yields up to 90% utilizing ultrasonics. Energy calculations indicated that Ultrasonics used 30% less energy to achieve the same yield levels as achieve with hot bath technique
INVESTIGATIONS OF THE BRITTLE FAILURE CAUSED BY AN ENVIRONMENTAL STRESS CRACKING OF A PLASTIC ENCLOSURE
Ahamed Shabeer, Gerald F. Zamiski, May 2012
The causes of a drastic reduction in the service life of plastic enclosures molded from an acrylonitrilebutadiene- styrene (ABS) resin have been investigated. The mechanism and type of failure have been deduced from a detailed morphological examination of the fracture surface. Various factors responsible for a rapid failure of the enclosure have been identified. Analytical testing such as infrared spectroscopy and differential scanning calorimetry were performed to identify a specific material characteristic responsible for the failure. The results obtained during the evaluation indicated that the failure was due to environmental stress cracking, which occurred as a consequence of the presence of an incompatible chemical and assembly stress. The nature of the chemical agent was found and its effect on the properties of the ABS is discussed.
LAYER MULTIPLYING COEXTRUSION OF POLYLACTIC ACID AND POLYVINYL ALCOHOL CAST FILMS
Jo Ann Ratto, Jeanne Lucciarini, Gregory Pigeon, Danielle Froio, Sarah Schirmer Cheney, Christopher Thellen, Darin Vanderwalker, Ron Walling, Greg Geil and Scott Winroth, May 2012
Layer multiplying coextrusion was utilized to produce a films containing polylactic acid and polyvinyl alcohol for food packaging applications. Control films and films containing 9, 25, 73 and 145 layers were produced. The emphasis of this study was to investigate the processability, morphology, barrier, mechanical and biodegradability properties of these multilayer films. The films showed stable layers, high oxygen barrier and mechanical performance that could all potentially be used in a food packaging applications.
LIFETIME PREDICTION OF PLASTIC PARTS – A CASE STUDY
Paul J. Gramann, Javier Cruz, Jeffrey A. Jansen, May 2012
Lifetime prediction of plastics is a very difficult proposition, but one that is becoming increasingly important as plastics are used in more demanding and critical applications. The lifetime of a plastic part is influenced greatly by many factors including the type of plastic, stress level, temperature, type of loading, and environmental conditions. All these factors make absolute lifetime prediction a nearly impossible task. However, by understanding how these factors influence plastics over time, one can begin to make educated predictions with some level of accuracy. This paper will discuss techniques that can be used to predict the lifetime of a part. A case study is given on how lifetime prediction was used to understand and ultimately solve the cracking of an industrial fan made of glass reinforced polypropylene
MARKET SITUATION AND POSSIBILITIES FOR INFORMATION PROCUREMENT OF BIOPOLYMERS (BIOPOLYMER DATABASE)
Maren Bengs, H.J. Endres, A. Siebert-Raths, May 2012
In the last three years the production capacities of biopolymers increased threefold. The current trend in the development of biopolymers is towards bio-based and durable materials, it veers away from biodegradable and compostable materials. As a result of this change and the significant growing market there is a bottleneck regarding the availability of information and technical data of biopolymers. The biopolymer database offers a knowledge platform about biopolymers with producer data and newly measured comparable properties. The presented comprehensive database reflects the market situation and serves as connection between manufacturers, converters and end users.
MODELLING OF HYGROSCOPIC STRESSES DUE TO NON-UNIFORM LIQUID DISTRIBUTION IN HOMOGENEOUS BIOPLASTICS
Indah Widiastuti, Igor Sbarski, S. Masood, May 2012
In this article, numerical modeling is used to simulate the distribution of liquid diffusion in bioplastic material and to determine the hygroscopic stress. The material used is homogeneous PLA based plastic exposed to aggressive automotive liquid. An analytical one-dimensional liquid diffusion solution is also presented to consider liquid concentration distribution, which shows a remarkable agreement with numerical simulation results. The results display non-mechanical stress distribution inside the homogenous material due to non-uniform liquid concentration profile.
MOLD FLOW ANALYSIS OF MOBILE PHONE CASE MADE BY TPS (THERMOPLASTIC STARCH)/(PC/ABS)
Sheng-Ju Liao, Shihn-Juh Liou, Chih-Jen Chang, May 2012
Mold flow analysis of mobile phone case was used in this study to evaluate the intrinsic characteristics of biomass materials how to influence the parameters of injection mold process and the outward appearance of product. Two materials were selected, one is TPS/(PC/ABS) biomass-based material developed by ITRI, and the other is commercial petrochemical plastic PC/ABS. In addition to evaluate the difference between these two materials in the injection mold process and dimensional stability, carbon emissions during this injection mold process were also calculated. Above results will show advantages and shortcomings of this newly developed TPS/(PC/ABS) biomass-based material.
MORPHOLOGY OF POLY(LACTIC ACID)/POLY(BUTYLENE ADIPATE-CO-TEREPHTHALATE) BLENDS AND ITS COMPOSITE WITH SPHERICAL SILICA PARTICLES
Ebrahim Jalili Dil, Pierre Carreau, Sepehr Ravati, Basil Favis, May 2012
In this work the detailed morphology of poly(lactic acid)/ poly (butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) has been carried out for the first time. The morphology of PLA/PBAT blends with different compositions was studied and limits of the co-continuity region were determined using rheological measurements and image analysis. Particle size analysis and breaking thread experiments showed that PLA/PBAT is a very low interfacial tension polymer blend. Moreover, composites of PLA/PBAT/spherical silica particles were prepared and the localization of silica particles in this blend was studied.
MULTI-COMPONENT BIO-BASED BLENDS WITH POLYLACTIC ACID AND POLYHYDROXYBUTYRATE: MORPHOLOGY AND PHYSICAL PROPERTIES
Sepehr Ravati, Christine Beaulieu, Louise Deschênes, Viêt Cao, Basil Favis, May 2012
Polylactic acid (PLA) and polyhydroxybutyrate (PHB) are two of the most important polymers derived from renewable resources. In this work, the morphology and physical properties of binary blends of PLA/PHB and multi-component blends of PLA/PHB with other commodity polymers such as polystyrene (PS) or biodegradable polymers such as polycaprolactone (PCL), poly (butylene succinate) (PBS), and poly(butylene adipate-co-terephthalate)(PBAT) were examined. Completely biodegradable blends of PLA/PHB/PBAT/PCL and PLA/PHB/PBAT/PBS demonstrated some unique morphologies including triple percolated systems.
MULTICOMPONENT BIODEGRADABLE BLENDS WITH POLY(BUTYLENE SUCCINATE): PARTIAL AND COMPLETE WETTING PHENOMENA
Sepehr Ravati, Basil Favis, May 2012
PBS (Poly(butylene succinate)) is a promising emerging bioplastic with good strength and modulus, however, its elongation at break (EB) is quite low and blends with higher EB materials are a potential route to develop more balanced properties. Blends of PBS with biodegradable polymers including polycaprolactone (PCL), poly(butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT), and poly(lactic acid) (PLA) were studied. These blends result in fully-biodegradable blends with completely different thermodynamically stable wetting behaviors and hence, significantly different potential morphological states.
NEW NON-HALOGEN FLAME RETARDED BIO-DERIVED POLYMER BLENDS DEVELOPMENTS
Jason Zhu, Jing Liu, Patricia Hubbard, Roger Avakian, May 2012
The use of polylactic acid (PLA) in durable applications such as appliances and computers has been limited by PLA’s inherent property shortcomings, such as low impact strength, low heat distortion temperature, and lack of flame retardancy. These issues have been overcome via blending with engineering plastics, applying new compatibilization technology and using unique flame retardant additives. The resultant compositions have an excellent balance between heat resistance, impact resistance and flame retardancy. One such composition achieves a UL 94 rating of V-0 at 1.6 mm thickness, a notched Izod impact value at room temperature up to 11.6 ft-lbs/in and also exceeds a threshold of 100°C in heat distortion temperature (HDT) at 66 psi load. This bio-derived blend with >30% bio-content has exceptional properties and has taken PLA into the realm of engineering plastics. These enhancements will enable PLA to replace petrochemical- based materials in many demanding durable applications.
PHYSICAL VAPOR DEPOSITION AND UV CURABLE COATINGS
Jason T. Eich, Eileen Weber, Phil Abell, Kristy Wagner, Chris Mack, May 2012
Environmental concerns with traditional chrome plating continue to expand. Parts finishers worldwide are searching for alternative that provides the visual appearance and durability of chrome plate, but without the environmental side effects and costs associated with this decades old process. “Chrome look” processes and coatings for decorative and automotive lighting PVD applications have been used in the UV curable coating industry for over twenty years. As development of UV curable coatings for PVD has progressed, so has the understanding of the PVD process and its unique capabilities and applications. This paper will address the current chrome plating process, advantages of PVD as chrome alternative, challenges associated with the various steps and layers of PVD applications, and suggestions for successful implementation of UV/PVD systems.
POLYESTER DEVELOPMENT PROGRESS FOR EXTRUSION BLOW MOLDING APPLICATIONS
Mark A. Treece, Thomas J. Pecorini, May 2012
This work highlights three decades of polyester resin development for the extrusion blow molding (EBM) process. The optimal formulation for a clear EBM material must fulfill three main requirements: process efficiently on existing equipment, produce bottles with robust drop impact performance, and have an acceptable recyclability story. Balancing these criteria in a single formulation is challenging, since obtaining compatibility in the PET recycle stream inherently causes drawbacks to processing and bottle performance. Nevertheless, significant innovation has enabled Eastman to provide the market with a comprehensive portfolio of copolyester technology, suitable for a variety of needs.
RENDERING WATERPROOF AND MULTIFUNCTIONAL FIBROUS SHEETS OF CELLULOSE: FROM PACKAGING AND ANTICOUNTERFEIT TO CONSTRUCTION APPLICATIONS
Despina Fragouli, Ilker S. Bayer, Anese Attanasio, May 2012
We present a scalable, inexpensive and green process to render cellulosic sheets waterproof with additional functional properties (magnetic, photoluminescent, antibacterial, etc.). The fibrous cellulose-based sheets are treated in their final, dry phase, with a huge potential economic impact in the manufacturing industry. Our method is based on the impregnation of cellulose sheets with acrylate monomers and micro or nano-scale functional fillers solutions, which polymerize as soon as they come in contact with the fibers. The formed polymeric nanocomposite creates a cladding around each individual fiber and not an overall coating onto the cellulose sheets. The treated cellulose fibers can be still recycled due to biodegradability of the used polymer.
RHEOLOGY AND MELT FRACTURE OF BIODEGRADABLE POLY (?-CAPROLACTONE) POLYESTERS
Nazbanoo Noroozi, Jaclyn A. Thomson, Laurel L. Schafer, Savvas G. Hatzikiriakos, May 2012
The viscoelastic behaviour of a number of commercial and newly synthesized linear biodegradable polyesters - poly (?-caprolactone) (PCLs) with different molecular characteristics was investigated using both rotational and capillary rheometry. The variation of the zero-shear viscosity and relaxation spectrum with molecular weight was studied in detail. The PCL processing instabilities were studied by capillary extrusion using a number of capillary dies having various diameter and length-to- diameter ratios. Sharkskin and gross melt fracture was observed at different shear rates depending on the molecular characteristics of the resins and the geometrical details of the capillary dies.


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