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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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Various topics related to sustainability in plastics, including bio-related, environmental issues, green, recycling, renewal, re-use and sustainability.
Methods for Protecting Polymer Recycle Chain and Intellectual Property of Advanced Polymers
Ben Eick, October 2011

The financial burden that accompanies the recycling of polymers when required by local laws and regulations will continue to grow in the next decade as more counterfeit products enter the marketplace. Manufacturers will begin spending more time and money attempting to recycle materials they did not produce than on actual production. In the same vein, companies that continue to innovate and produce specialty polymers are susceptible to counterfeiting. Counterfeiting leads to financial liability from product failures and losses in both customer confidence and revenue. When forced to recycle another manufacturer’s polymers, a company exposes themselves to the possibility of introducing inferior, harmful, and possibly dangerous polymers into their production facility and eventually into the hands of consumers. This exposes polymer producers and brand owners to liability if there are illnesses or product failures from recycling counterfeit materials. If inferior product is not detected prior to the time of recycling, a large amount of resources will be occupied separating good and bad polymers, increasing the likelihood that the cost of goods produced from recycled materials will be priced out of the market. Manufacturers and recyclers need tools that can be used to help them instantly identify their product from counterfeit materials. This paper will present several options to protect the polymer supply chain from cradle to grave to and back to cradle, methods to help reduce liability from inferior raw materials entering the marketplace, and protect intellectual property by ensuring advanced, specialized polymers are from legitimate sources.

Sustainability from Start to Finish: The Lifecycle Impacts of Plastic Packaging
Kelly Polich, October 2011

Sustainability is now a business fact, yet many of those asking for improvements to “sustainable packaging” lack the fundamental understanding needed to make the best possible business decisions. Scientific information is needed from production to end-of-life to determine what makes a package more “sustainable”. The 3 Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) are often the first steps for many individuals and businesses on their journey to becoming more sustainable, although new “R’s” such as Renew and Recovery are appearing. Using science-based criteria can help improve the understanding of how plastic packaging contributes to a sustainable society. Plastic packaging can prevent spoilage and damage to food and other products during distribution and storage. Plastics are light weight and frequently require less raw material and energy than other materials used for packaging. Plastics can be recycled and recovered at their end-of-life. Significant progress has also been made in the development of bio-plastics, but there continues to be confusion as to what bioplastics are and how to properly assess their environmental impact. Sustainability performance cannot be defined with a single attribute but must consider a product’s entire life cycle. This abstract/presentation will begin with examples demonstrating the sustainability benefits of plastic packaging, then define what bio-plastics are and why the diversity of bioplastics and their varying properties make it difficult to make simple, generic assessments as to whether plastics made from traditional or renewable feedstocks are “good” or “bad”, and conclude with a discussion of end-of-life options for packaging, including recycle-to-energy.

Marketing the Message of Sustainable Plastics Packaging
Mike Tolinski, October 2011

Recycled-content or bioresin packaging will require more than just the right technology and materials for sustained growth. Sustainable packaging expansion will also require increasing the number of informed, enthusiastic retailers and packaging users that are interested in being “greener.” This paper examines one way in which resin, packaging, and packaged-goods producers are attracting attention to the recycled-content, recyclability, or bio-basis of new plastics packaging. Messages on the packaging itself are used to make green claims and create branding, sometimes approaching (or overstepping) the boundaries of “greenwashing.” This paper considers the effectiveness of various messages, and, referencing proposed 2010 U.S. Federal “Green Guides,” considers the ways in which a clear, honest sustainability claim can be communicated to both informed and skeptical audiences.

Recent Advancements in Regrind Properties of Long-Glass Reinforced
Sue Kozora, October 2011

Two separate studies were completed to look at recovery of long glass fiber (average glass length = 10-15 mm) reinforced polypropylene. The LGF PP regrind in one case was molded at various percentages with virgin material and the other study involved property evaluation of 100% LGF PP regrind. The basis of the study was to evaluate use of typical grinders (grind size of 5/16”) and extruders to simulate conditions commonly found in most plastics molding facilities. Recommendations for addition of regrind to virgin materials are also presented based on evaluation of the properties obtained.

Material Separation and Recycling of Mixed and Shredded Plastics from used Household Appliances
Koji Hamano, October 2011

The separation and recycling technologies of shredded plastic mixture from waste household appliances have been developed. The separation technology was based on the characteristics of specific gravity, electrostatic charge and X-ray transparent of the plastics. The separated plastics were recycled by the technologies of contaminant reduction and material reformation. Furthermore, the first massive and high purity plastic recycling plant for polypropylene (PP), polystyrene (PS) and acrylonitrilebutadiene- styrene (ABS) in Japan has launched in 2010. This plant is able to separate the shredded plastic mixture up to 10,000 ton annually, and the recycled PP, PS and ABS have high purity more than 99%.

Shredder Technologies for Improving Resin Reclamation Processes and Economics
John Farney, October 2011

Reclaim extrusion lines rely on high quality reclaimed resin, which must come from balanced, high performance, and properly designed reclaim lines. These systems must be properly configured for the tasks at hand, and the implementation must allow for the complete business plan. Material volume is not the only data point upon which such a system must be judged on. If simple volume were the judgment, reclaimers, recyclers, and reprocessors would simply buy the largest and cheapest solutions available. Nothing could be further from the truth. Inadequate processing capabilities of the size reduction equipment can cause many problems, including the following: • Poor quality regrind • High levels of material degradation • Possible material contamination • Poor performance due to machine maintenance and overall condition • Poor material ingestion and processing • Improper operation due to machine design

Feeding and Blending Systems for Reclaim Extrusion
Keith Larson, October 2011

Extrusion lines rely on the feeding and blending systems, and other auxiliary equipment, that work with them. This equipment supplies the regrind, resin and additive materials, cools the process, maintains critical temperatures and can even monitor the entire operation. Inadequate process cooling, material handling or size reduction equipment can cause many problems, including the following: • Inadequate process cooling can reduce product output • Poor temperature control can cause product quality problems • Material can be contaminated if not handled and stored properly • The output of the line can be reduced, and even interrupted, if the material is not conveyed to the extruder at the required rate • Product quality will suffer if the material is not blended and metered into the extruder throat at the correct ratios • Excess dust caused by poor size reduction equipment can create processing problems

Drying and Crystallizing Systems for Reclaim Extrusion
Jeff Courter, October 2011

Many reclaim lines require moisture removal from the regrind material, and a PET reclaim extrusion line will not operate properly if the drying and crystallizing system cannot supply the material into the feed throat at the desired moisture content, temperature and intrinsic viscosity (I.V.). A proper drying and crystallizing system can be the difference between quality product and junk, so it is worthwhile to consider some features of the new equipment for your system: • Correct sizing and proper operation • New filter systems for increased performance • High-efficiency motors • New user-friendly PLC-based control systems • Heat recovery systems • Gas-fired options • Integration with extruder control system The following equipment is crucial to any reclaim extrusion line: • Hot air dryer (material dependent) • Crystallizer (material dependent) • Dust collection system • Dryer and hopper sized for the application • Loading system

Polyacrylonitrile/acrylamide-based carbon fibers prepared using solvent-free coagulation
Norhaniza Yusof , Ahmad Fauzi Ismail, September 2011

Polymer precursors of carbon fibers made using an environmentally friendly process show mechanical and thermal properties comparable to those prepared by conventional methods.

Mechanical & Impact Response of Recycled Thermoplastic & Flyash Foam Composites
Uday Vaidya, September 2011

The heavy transport industry has a significant amount of scrap generated in the manufacture of parts such as trailer bodies and structural components. Presently that scrap is landfilled. This paper presents the processing and resulting properties of recycled thermoplastic composites into useful products for reuse in transportation and related applications.

Sustainability with Automotive Carbon Fibre Composites: Reclaimed Carbon Fibre — cPBT Thermoplastic Composite
Jackie Rehkopf, September 2011

PowerPoint Presentation at Automotive Composites Conference and Exhibition

Fatigue Performance of SMC Composite Material Under Different Environmental Damage & Temperature Conditions
Justin Hunt, September 2011

The Automotive Composites Consortium (ACC) a partnership of Chrysler Group LLC Ford Motor Company General Motors Company and the U.S. Department of Energy conducts pre-competitive research on structural and semi-structural polymer composites to advance high strength lightweight solutions in automotive technology. An ACC focal project concerning the development of a structural composite underbody was established to provide methodologies and data for each ACC member company to implement lightweight cost-effective structural composites in high volume vehicles. This objective will be fulfilled through design analysis fabrication and testing of a structural composite underbody. A key design element required for implementation of the underbody structure is an understanding of the affects of environmental temperature and impact damage on the axial fatigue performance of the SMC composite material selected for the underbody structure fabrication. Research efforts have been made on fatigue performance of different type of composite materials (Ref. 1-5). In this study specimens were tested with no damage as well as two levels of impact damage. Environmental temperatures for the undamaged specimens were -40°C 21°C and 80°C. It was observed that fatigue life increased at low temperature conditions and decreased at high temperatures. The affect of temperature had a greater influence on fatigue life than the impact damage in this study. Temperature increases as measured at the specimen surfaces were observed as test frequency increased. Similar observations were made by Bellenger et al (Ref.6). The relationship between stress loading frequency and temperature will be investigated. Optical and scanning electron microscopy will be used to examine the crack locations and characteristics for specimens tested under different conditions.

Improved mechanical properties of a polylactide thermoplastic elastomer
Jie Ren , Qian Zhong, Qinfeng Wang, August 2011

A high-molecular-weight copolymer blend based on poly(lactic acid), possessing both amorphous and crystalline segments, features excellent mechanical performance and thermal properties.

Clay improves sustainability of polyvinyl chloride nanocomposites
Xiaoran Zheng , Marianne Gilbert, July 2011

Various processing methods are tested to examine the resulting properties of nanocomposites composed of clay and polyvinyl chloride.

Bionanocomposite foams with strong dimensional stability
Yottha Srithep, Shaoqin Gong, Lih-Sheng Turng, Srikanth Pilla, Alireza Javadi , Craing Clemons, July 2011

Microcellular injection molding can be used to fabricate lightweight, tough, and cost-effective biodegradable polymer composites.

More cost-effective, superior biodegradable food packaging
Vimal Katiyar , Hemant Nanavati, July 2011

A new catalyst complex enables a precursor polymer nanocomposite to yield a high-molecular-weight, highly crystalline poly(lactic acid)-clay nanocomposite through solid-state polymerization.

Mixed monolayers of biodegradable polymers and an organo-modified clay
Atsuhiro Fujimori, July 2011

Ultrathin hybrid films form highly-ordered layered structures and 2D lattices of long alkyl chains extending from the montmorillonite surface.

A new platform for creating versatile nonwoven mats
Caroline Schauer , Marjorie Austero, June 2011

Materials suitable for filtration, sensing, and other applications can be made from composite mats prepared by electrospinning crosslinked chitosan with carbon black.

Structure and mechanical properties of polymer blends incorporating waste PET
Ahmad Arefazar, Somayeh Lashgari, Soheila Lashgari , Somayyeh Mohammadian Gezaz, June 2011

Adding a compatibilizer to blends of acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene terpolymer and recycled engineering plastic results in better mixing as well as products with enhanced properties.

Honghu Dai, Daoxing Dai, Jintao Yang, Yunguo Zhou, Zhengdong Fei, Feng Chen, Mingqiang Zhong, May 2011

In this paper, mesoporous silica and functionalized silicas were prepared by a green template, polyamidoamine (PAMAM) dendrimers. Three silane coupling agents, 3-triethoxysilylpropyl- amine (APTES), -methylacryloyl oxypropyl trimethoxysilane (MAPTMS) and N-[3-(trimethoxysilyl)propyl]ethylenediamine (AEAPTMS) were used for modification on pore surface. The characters of synthesized silicas were investigated in detail. The results showed that controllable pore diameters, narrow pore size distributions, high surface area and pore volume were achieved. The PAMAM template can be feasibly removed by using water extraction.

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ANTEC 2016 - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA May 23-25, 2016. [On-line].
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