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.
Mining The Value From Oil Sands Tailings Ponds
In Canada, the cleaning cost of 340 billion gallons of oil sands tailings ponds is estimated to be over $27 billion. There is a need for cost-effective technologies for removal and recovery of oil from these ponds. Previously, we reported foams application for absorption and adsorption of crude oil from water. This works aims to develop effective method for foam reuse and oil recovery to improve the benefits of the treatment process. The polyester polyurethane (PESPU) foam with pH-responsive wetting properties and crude oil were used to assess the effectiveness of mechanical compression, pH-swing method, and chemical wash method. The mechanical compression is a simple, environmental friendly, and easy to implement method. This process was effective in recovery of the absorbed oil, where the oil uptake mechanism is reversible superhydrophobic forces and pore filling. However, for adsorbed oil recovery it was less effective. According to pseudo-second-order kinetic model, the oil droplets were adhered to the sponge surface by physical forces. As a result, mechanical forces were weak in shearing-off the thin oil film. Based on pH-responsive wetting property, the oil adsorption was effective at acidic conditions. Therefore, the oil recovery was performed at basic conditions by introducing new “pH-swing” technique. This method produced minimal waste and sustainable, but materials reusability declined to ~70% within three cycles. Finally, chemical wash method was applied to recover the adhered oil from the surface. According to surface chemical displacement principles, a solvent with appreciably low surface tension than the foam and similar molecular structure the crude oil was used to wash the sponge at ambient conditions. Due to enhanced solubility and flowability, the crude oil was readily recovered from the foam surface. The cleaned foam as well exhibited over 99% efficiency over multiple reuses. Our finding show that the foam is a promising solution to remediate detrimental oil sands tailings and for recovery of the residual crude oil from water leading to environmental and economic benefits.
Modeling The Operating Performance Of Melt Filtration In Polymer Recycling
This paper addresses the generation of a general valid analytic equation for estimating the initial pressure drop of woven screens in terms of polymer recycling. Therefore we performed numerical CFD Simulations as basis for heuristic modeling. Based on evolutionary heuristic algorithms, we applied symbolic regression in order to determine the pecScreen model. We performed experiments at different melt filtration systems for validation of the model using virgin as well as in-house, post-industrial and post-consumer recycling materials. It turned out that the results of the general valid analytic equation are in good agreement with the experimental determined data, yielding a coefficient of determination (R²) of 0.92.
Modelling The Contamination Behavior Of Polymer Melt Filters And Pressure Loss Simulations Of Filtration Media
In the field of polymer processing, the extrusion is one of the most common processing methods. Not only in the processing of recycled materials, also when using virgin polymers there can be contaminations during the storage or processing of the material. This may adversely affect the melt quality and by this also the quality of the final extrusion product. Examples for possible contaminations are metal particles which are caused by wear and tear of the extruder, or degradation products of the processed material itself.As a result of increasing demands on the quality of extrusion products, especially in the field of fiber and film extrusion, filtration of polymer melts is widely used and state of the art today. To remove unwanted debris out of the melt, different metal filter media is used. Some examples for typical filter media are different kinds of wire mesh, filters out of nonwoven metal fibers or sintered metal powder discs. Using this filter media, it is possible to remove foreign particles like solid particles, as well as soft components, the so called “gels” from the melt. This ensures a high quality extrusion result.In order to compare the filtering effect of different filter media and to assess the contamination and selective filtration it is necessary to develop a possibility for reproducibly rapid contamination of filter materials. In this work this should be elaborated as part of the PET processing. For this, a real filter contamination is analyzed. After this a definition of an adequate substitute dirt is effected. The focus is both on solid particles, as well as on gel contamination. With this it is possible to generate realistic and reproducible filter soiling so that pressure rise curves can be generated in order to compare the behavior of different filter media in the extrusion process.
Modification Of Rheological And Crystallization Properties Of High Performance Polymers For Thermoplastic Composite Applications
Continuous fiber reinforced thermoplastic composites offer many advantages over thermoset composites, including longer shelf lives of raw materials, faster processing times, design freedom, and the ability to recycle. High performance resins offer high use temperature and excellent mechanical properties in composites, however they present the challenges of high processing temperatures and melt viscosities. Polyhedral oligomeric silisesquioxane (POSS) nanostructured chemicals offer the opportunity to enhance melt flow and increase crystallization rates in polymer systems when they can be dispersed at the nano-level. We describe the rheological and crystallization performance of POSS blends with PPS and PEEK resins.
New Developmental Copolyester
Eastman Chemical Company has developed a new copolyester that combines the best of Spectar™ and Tritan™. The material has high heat resistance, strength, and stiffness as well as a number of other desirable characteristics. These include a low coefficient of friction, excellent ultrasonic welding, and great chemical resistance. The material is also excellent for injection molding, reheat stretch blow molding, injection stretch blow molding, extrusion blow molding, and extrusion. In addition, bio-content or recycled content can easily be incorporated. The characteristics of this new polymer enable molding and design freedom in a number of applications with the clean chemistry of copolyesters.
New Generation Flame Retardants Based In Ionic Liquids
Ionic liquids — salts in a liquid state at ambient conditions — make up a fascinating family of materials whose unique physical properties have made them highly sought after for many challenging applications. Inovia Materials LLC is the first company in the world to patent and commercialize ionic liquids for polymer additive applications. Inovia Materials LLC is positioned to replace and expand the applications of traditional flame retardants with high “green chemistry” qualities, superior performance and enhanced properties. Some advantageous features include:• Negligible volatility and a benign environmental presence;• Better flame retarding performance and longer period of effectiveness;• Milder effects on thermal, mechanical, optical properties of polymers treated;• Significant reduction of polymer melt viscosity, allowing polymers to be processed or recycled at a lower temperature and in a more efficient manner.Inovia flame retardants can find applications in plastics, textiles, and elastomers in the building & construction, electronics & appliances, automotive & transportation, wires & cables, textiles, and other end-use industries.Inovia flame retardants can be applied using different methods:• Mixing with monomers or oligomers before polymerization• Compounding with plastics• Surface modification and coating application
New Technology For Improving Halogen Free Flame Retardant Performance In Polymer Application
The recent health-risk and environmental concerns of using Halogen Flame Retardant (HFR) is driving companies to use Halogen Free Flame Retardant (HFFR) in their products. However, several challenges must be overcome to utilize HFFRs in polymer matrixes. Many of those challenges are related to the HFFR large dosing level, its low compatibility, and its poor dispersibility. These characteristics lead to impaired mechanical properties in the final product.Due to the health-risk and environmental concerns, Interface and Performance, which is a division of Evonik, has developed new technologies to enhance the properties of HFFR in polymer applications. Organo-Modified Siloxane (OMS) is an example of this technology. This technology is made up of unique polymeric substances that improve the compatibility of HFFR particles with polymer matrixes such as polyolefin and engineering polymers. Therefore, Combining OMS with HFFR improves UL 94 results at lower HFFR usage levels, mechanical properties of highly filled HFFR polymer compounds, melt flow indexes (improving the processing ability of highly filled HFFR compounds), amperage level use, and prevention of die drool. The OMS technology also improves the hydrophobicity of the compound, resulting in lower water absorption and better CTI values. This paper focuses on Evonik state-of-the-art OMS additives for filled HFFR (melamine cyanurate, phosphorus based materials, and others) in engineering polymer compounds (PBT, polyamide 6 and polyamide 6,6). These OMS additives can be used while compounding as well as in surface treated HFFR. The improvement of UL 94, CTI, mechanical properties, and melt flow indexes of filled HFFR in engineering polymer compounds will be demonstrated in this paper.
Non-Isocyanate Polyurethane Networks Can Be Melt-Reprocessed With Full Property Recovery Associated With Cross-Link Density: The Case Of Polyhydroxyurethane Networks
Conventional cross-linked polyurethane (PU) or PU networks are unable to be reprocessed in the melt state into reshaped, high-value recycled products. This is because of the irreversible nature of the cross-links in PU, a common feature of thermosets which prevents the cross-linked network or thermoset from ever returning to a melt state. We have recently discovered several chemical platforms for making cross-linked polymers melt-reprocessable by instilling a reversible nature to the cross-links as a function of temperature. Here, we describe our approach for making reprocessable polyhydroxyurethane (PHU) networks that exhibit full property recovery associated with cross-link density after multiple melt-state reprocessing steps. PHUs are a class of non-isocyanate-based polyurethanes (NIPUs) that can be synthesized via reaction of amines with cyclic carbonates; the PHUs contain urethane linkages with adjacent primary or secondary hydroxyl groups. In the presence of appropriate catalyst, we have synthesized PHU networks with robust properties at room temperature and many tens of degrees above room temperature. These networks containing appropriate catalyst can be effectively reprocessed at least three times at 140 degrees C leading to full recovery within error of rubbery-state plateau modulus and room-temperature tensile strength and strain at break.
PET Advancements In Extrusion Blow Molding
I would propose creating a summary of efforts to utilize PET in extrusion blow molding. The main processes for making PET bottles involve creating an expensive injection mold in combination with expensive blow mold tooling. This approach works for large volume production of 100million containers or more, but many potential packages for lower volume users are not well served. Resin suppliers have created grades of PET with increased melt strength that have begun to address this market need. These materials are imposing problems for recycling of PET which needs to be addressed. I think a summary paper of the activity that has taken place will be of interest to ANTEC attendees. I have not written the paper but will if the organizers wish a presentation.
Physical Foaming Using High Pressure Gas Saturation For Biopolymer Applications.
Foaming technology is a useful way to optimize material consumption in plastic processing, increasing the material cost/benefit ratio and improving some properties such as the impact resistance, the insulation properties, and the dimension stability, among others. For compostable biopolymers, the foaming technology should not affect the biodegradation properties of the material.This work is oriented to analyze the effect of foaming parameters on the density and material hardness in a foamed poly lactide acid (PLA) part. In the foaming process, the PLA pellets are exposed at room temperature to a highly pressurized gas in order to saturate the pellets, then the material is processed in an injection molding machine. The effect of saturation and desorption time before the injection molding process is studied.A PLA from Nature Works is used. The most recommendable process window for the foaming of the material is proposed.
Polycaprolactone Nanofibers Containing Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor-Encapsulated Gelatin Particles Enhance Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation To Endothelial Cells And Angiogenesis Of Endothelial Cells
During the regeneration of tissues and organs, growth factors (GFs) play a vital role by affecting cell behavior. However, because of low half-life time and quick degradation of GFs, their stimulations on cells are relatively short and discontinuous. In our study, a releasing scaffold platform, consisting of polycaprolactone (PCL) nanofibers and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-encapsulated gelatin particles, has been developed to extend the influence of GFs on mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and endothelial cells (ECs). The results showed that this kind of scaffold could direct the differentiation of MSCs to ECs and maintain the stability of its tubular structure for an extended period of time, thus suggesting its potential application in vascular tissue engineering.
Potential Of Biocarbon As Reinforcement For Pbt In Automotive Applications
Over the last few decades, the move towards more sustainable development and environmental protection has offered many opportunities to develop both biodegradable and biobased composite materials with excellent performance. This new class of materials promises to enable the circular economy concept and sustainable development for our future. In this work, the properties comparison between renewable bioresourced fillers and synthetic conventional fillers were presented and discussed. This works reveals that biocarbon-filled poly(butylene terephthalate) (PBT) hold very high potential to replace existing mineral filler-filled PBT composites in automotive applications. With high biobased content, lower density and cost, it is obvious that the biocarbon filler can be used as a substitute for conventional fillers to develop more eco-friendly products.
Prediction Of Fiber Reinforced Plastics Considering Local Fiber Length And Orientation
The gaining importance of sustainability in recent years has also led to a closer look on lightweight materials such as fiber reinforced plastics. However, these materials usually pose a challenge in application. Purposeful virtual engineering and prediction is part of it. A new approach allows the reliable prediction of discontinuous fiber reinforced plastics based on integrative simulations while taking local fiber orientation and local fiber length into account. The results obtained with this method already show an improvement in prediction of simple part geometries. Further gain in quality is expected by complex parts where fiber orientation distribution and fiber length distribution spread more widely.
Protected Biofilm Growth In Macroporous Polyvinilidene Fluoride Carriers For Biological Organic Removal From Municipal Wastewater
Attached growth bioreactor process provides surface area to support the growth and attachment of bacteria, and thereby a means to biologically remove organics from wastewater. In this work, an open-cellular polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) foams consisted of macroporous structures were designed and fabricated to promote the efficiency of existing biofilm carriers for wastewater treatment. A manufacturing approach that integrated compression molding and particulate leaching was employed to fabricate the PVDF foams. Different contents of salt were used as leaching agent to fabricate PVDF foams with macroporous structures of different total protected surface areas. Experimental studies were conducted to elucidate the structure-to-performance relationships of these macroporous PVDF carriers in terms of bacteria-to-carrier interaction and organic removal efficiency.
Recycled And Waste Materials In Selected Automotive Applications
Recycled and Waste Materials in Selected Automotive ApplicationsKarnik Tarverdi, Peter S Allan & Paul J Marsh,Wolfson Centre for Materials Processing, Brunel University London,Institute of Materials and Manufacturing, United KingdomAbstractThe objective of this project was to investigate the potential use of recycled and waste materials in automotive components. Few components were selected for the investigation. All of them had the potential to be manufactured from waste and recycled materials. The trial materials which included recycled polypropylene and an industrial particulate solid waste stream, were processed into prototype components that were evaluated and compared with the respective production counterparts.The overall results indicated a clear potential for the use of the project materials in their respective applications.
Role Of Interfacial Crystallization In Designing Polyolefin Blends From Mixed Stream Recycle Feeds
Polyolefin production requires ~8% of global oil and natural gas production for monomer supply and the energy required for polymerization; often these polyolefins are used in short term applications such as packaging. While researchers work toward long term solutions involving sustainable polymers, the short term focus on how to better recycle polyolefins currently in the production/consumption cycle must be addressed. Given their chemical similarity and similar density, recycled polyolefins are difficult to separate from recycle streams often resulting in mixed stream recycle feeds. Previously we presented the role of residual oligomer after Ziegler-Natta polymerization of polyethylene (PE) and isotactic polypropylene (iPP) in preventing cross interfacial crystallization of immiscible PE-iPP bilayers which resulted in weak interfacial adhesion. We also presented strategies for promoting cross interfacial crystallization via processing (rapid interfacial quenching) and materials selection (thickened interfaces) in PE-iPP bilayers. Here we investigate the role of interfacial adhesive strength between three PE-iPP blends in the absence of applied shear during processing. With poor interfacial adhesion between PE/iPP, brittle failure of each blend was observed, as expected with immiscible polymer pairs. When interfacial adhesion strength exceeded that of the strength of component homopolymer, exciting synergism was observed between PE/iPP blends. Processing in the presence of applied shear flows (injection molding and film extrusion) will also be discussed. This finding highlights the importance of considering interfacial strength when designing mixed polyolefin recycle streams.
Sabic Solutions For Personal Hygiene Applications: Industry Trends And Sabic Offerings, And Developments
Within SABIC we are further expanding our market facing approach in Petrochemicals business with new segments, and focus approach, in order to further intensify customer intimacy and to provide more focused solutions. Personal hygiene is one of the identified ‘segment’, which will enable SABIC to accelerate the pace of innovation, to respond to the personal hygiene industry challenges, and to follow the market trends by working in ever-closer collaboration with the customers. Increase in child population, growing female workforce, and rising per capita income are the key factors driving the demand for personal hygiene products across the globe. SABIC is focusing on delivering sustainable solutions that help to our customers to achieve their ambitions. SABIC® is already offering few commercial PP-fiber grades (MFR 10-35) for lightweight non-woven fabrics for personal hygiene applications. SABIC® PP grades in hygienic applications are1) utilized in existing extrusion equipment without significant modifications2) achieving excellent fiber thickness uniformity3) produced with phthalate free technology/catalysts, and such SABIC® PP fiber portfolio for hygienic non-woven products are available globally.SABIC technology team is further working on new developments to fulfill customer demands for advanced solutions in hygiene fabrics, and flexible packaging. Some of the developments and solutions offerings are to be elaborated during the conference, alike: soft-touch, melt-blown, breathable film solutions etc…SABIC is persistently pursuing innovative technologies to bring about broad-based improvements in the products offerings, while maintaining the momentum to meet changing market requirements.
Study Of Biocompatibilizer For New Renewable Blends Of Polypropylene Carbonate And Polybutylene Succinate
The lack of commercially relevant compatibilizers from renewable sources is limiting the usage of biopolymer blends and composites in today’s market. This work studies potential new compatibilizers that can be used in applications involving blends of sustainable polycarbonates and polyesters. Poly(propylene carbonate) (PPC) and poly(butylene succinate) (PBS) were functionalized separately using maleic anhydride (MAH) and an initiator to trigger free radical grafting. Different amounts of MAH were used during the melt compounding to study the effect of the MAH amount on the extent of the reaction. The resulting compounds were examined by means of titration, proton NMR and parallel plate rheometry. Formulations using both PPC and PBS successfully reacted with MAH, as evidenced by the appearance of new chemical shifts in their proton NMR spectra associated with midchain grafting and end groups reactions. The PPC compounds showed an increase of the grafting efficiency with addition of more MAH. The PBS formulations had maximum grafting efficiency value at 2% MAH. Rheometry showed that incorporation of 2% of MAH and DCP produced an increase in the viscosity of both PPC and PBS in comparison to their neat counterparts. Evaluating all these results together, it can be concluded that the PPC with 2% MAH and DCP is the most reactive compound and the one that could perform more efficiently as a compatibilizer. In addition, melt compounding presents an economic method to produce biocompatibilizers of high reactivity and high molecular weight.
Study Of Biodegradable Polybutylene Succinate/Poly(Butylene Adipate-Co-Terephthalate) Blends
With increasing interest towards biobased and/or biodegradable polymers that generate high performance composites, instead of petroleum based products, creates new opportunities and research challenges. Poly (butylene succinate) (PBS) is supposed to be one of the most promising biodegradable polyesters because of its good mechanical strength and high heat deflection temperature. However, the low impact strength of poly (butylene succinate) (PBS) has limited its application in some fields. Therefore, poly (butylene adipate-co-terephthalate) (PBAT) and poly (butylene succinate) (PBS) were melt-compounded to fabricate a novel PBS/PBAT blend to improve the impact strength of PBS. The effect of PBAT on the properties of the final binary blends, including mechanical properties, thermal properties and rheology properties, is studied in this research. Rheological properties revealed a strong shear-thinning tendency of the blend resulting from the high compatibility between PBAT and PBS. The partially compatibilized PBS/PBAT blends show high tensile strength (~50 MPa), high impact strength (~200 J/m) and a moderate tensile modulus (~500 MPa). A PBS/PBAT system can be a good candidate to fabricate high impact biodegradable products.
The Effects Of Metal Stearates On The Rheological Properties Of Powder Injection Molding Feedstocks And Resulting Molded Green Parts
The effects of adding metal stearates to a powder injection molding (PIM) feedstock prepared with a wax based binder system and silicon powder was investigated. The rheological properties and molding properties of the feedstocks were characterized. Predictive viscosity models were developed for each feedstock. The zero-shear viscosity was constant with the introduction of metal stearates while, the yield stress was seen to decrease. The molded green parts were produced with a traditional injection molding process. The surface quality of the molded green parts did not seem to change. The quality through the thickness changed as vacuum voids started to form with the introduction of the metal stearates.
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