SPE Insight


This Giving Tuesday, Change the Perception of Plastics

Join the SPE Foundation as it seeks support for After-School SPE STEM Clubs. Focused on sustainable materials science and positive plastics education, we need your help to bring this exciting new program to more students. It costs $5,000 per year to cover the cost of one club. Help us reach our goal of raising enough funds for FIVE After-School SPE STEM Clubs! Donate here for Giving Tuesday (11.30.21)!


Plastics Engineering to Commemorate SPE’s 80th Anniversary in 2022

As part of SPE’s 80th Anniversary, one of the many activities planned throughout 2022 is a special commemorative issue of Plastics Engineering (PE) magazine, which will be published in July/August. This keepsake issue will act as a major reference for plastics industry history and outlook. For those who want to be part of this special issue that will be read, referenced, and reviewed for years to come, please take a few minutes to provide your ideas by going to 4spe.org/Celebrate80.


After-School SPE Foundation STEM Clubs Need Your Support

The SPE Foundation is launching SPE After-School STEM Clubs this fall. This new program will serve 400-600 students with weekly lessons focused on sustainable materials science and positive plastics education. It costs $5,000 per year to cover each club. Make a gift today and help us show plastics the love it deserves!


ANTEC® 2022 Returns As In-Person Event

SPE has announced it is hosting ANTEC® 2022 in-person, co-located with PLASTEC® South, an Informa event, in Charlotte, NC, June 14-15. PLASTEC® South is a comprehensive annual plastic design and manufacturing event for plastics professionals, suppliers and buyers to discover innovation, engineer new technology, and to expand their networks. ANTEC® 2022 will also include an online component.


SPE Announces Series of DEI Events

Continuing to ensure Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) issues are brought to the forefront in the plastics industry as well as in manufacturing as a whole, SPE is announcing four roundtable educational and networking events, which will be delivered during Informa Markets – Engineering advanced manufacturing regional trade shows, starting with Advanced Manufacturing East, taking place in December 2021 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City.


SPE to Host Second Annual Plastics in Aerospace Virtual Event

SPE is proud to host the second annual Plastics in Aerospace conference, taking place virtually Oct. 26-27. This year’s conference will focus specifically on aircraft interiors and emerging technologies including UAV/UAM. Learn which materials are emerging as prime candidates to revolutionize the aerospace industry from thought leaders in this space.


2021 SPE Foundation Scholarships Awarded

The SPE Foundation recently announced its 2021 Scholarship Recipients. The Foundation supports the development of plastics professionals by funding quality educational programs, grants and scholarships. Through its online application portal, the Foundation managed 77 scholarships awarded to 47 outstanding students totaling $190,350.


SPE Announces Formation of DEI Advisory Board

SPE has formed an Advisory Board to support Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) within the Society and the plastics industry. Through the formation of this Advisory Board, SPE intends to bring these issues to the forefront, while at the same time developing educational, professional development, mentoring, and recruitment resources for SPE’s elected leaders, staff, and members and their companies.


Applications Now Available for 2022 SPE Honored Service Member and Fellow of the Society Awards

SPE Fellows are honored for their contributions in the fields of plastics engineering, science, or technology, or in the management of such activities and Honored Service Members are recognized for their long-term, outstanding service to, and support of, the Society and its objectives. Fellow of the Society and Honored Service Member applications are due October 1, 2021.


RACE 4 Asia Showcases Speakers and Panelists From Across the Globe

Industry leaders and decision makers joined forces on July 15th and 16th, 2021 to discuss recycling opportunities and overcoming challenges during the pandemic and complexities within the recycling industry. The two-day conference included networking, knowledge sharing and ideation across the plastics ecosystem.


SPE News Now Available

Our new bi-weekly e-newsletter, SPE News, covers breaking industry developments with special emphasis on the people, chapters, and activities within SPE. Our goal with SPE News is to provide content that is easy to digest, interesting and enjoyable to read. We will distribute the newsletter via email to SPE members and subscribers on two Fridays per month. Watch for it!


JSW America’s Paul Martin and Dow’s Pavan Valavala Named to SPE Executive Board

SPE President Jason Lyons appointed Paul Martin, Vice President, JSW America, as VP at Large and Pavan Valavala, Sr. R&D Leader for the Materials Engineering Center in the Engineering and Process Sciences Organization, Dow, Inc., was approved by the Executive Board to assume position of SPE’s VP Professional Development. Each of these positions started on July 1 and will run for one year.


Meet SPE President Jason Lyons

Dr. Jason Lyons, Business Manager, Arkema, began his tenure as SPE's President on July 1. Dr. Lyons has been part of the SPE community for many years in many roles that have helped influence his journey to becoming the society's newest President. SPE News asked Dr. Lyons a handful of questions so we could get to know him a little better. Besides finding out he’s a die-hard Pearl Jam fan, we discovered Dr. Lyons has many passions. 


SPE 2021 President's Cup Recipient Announced

Conor P. Carlin, SPE's VP Sustainabilty, was recently named as the 2021 recipient of the Society’s President’s Cup Award. Dr. Jaime Gomez, SPE’s Outgoing President, presented the award to Carlin during SPE's Honors & Awards Ceremony, which took place virtually on June 29th. The ceremony also presented the Passing of the Gavel and celebrated SPE's 2021 Fellow and HSM award winners. 


A Solution to Consider Forming-Induced Fiber Reorientation in RTM Analysis

The fiber orientation changes significantly during the forming stage. The fabric’s shear and fiber reorientation locally affect the magnitude and orientation of the fabric’s permeability property. The difference in the fiber orientation between the manufacturing process and the simulation leads to errors. The best solution to reduce these errors is to have a seamless workflow between the different simulation tools.


It’s much more than a “Plastics Race”… it’s SPE’s Plastics Summer Olympics!

SPE’s Plastics Summer Olympics, powered by QMe Tech, will be held for 4 days starting on Friday, August 6 and going through Monday, August 9. You can compete at your convenience! Watch the leader board and see if you’ll be taking your spot on the winner’s podium! SPE Members can participate for free.


ANTEC® Recap: Chemistries Target Thermal Control in EV Batteries

New Rogers Corp. materials control thermal runaway in electric vehicles

With e-mobility gaining traction, chemistries to prevent thermal runaway—i.e., temperature spikes in failing electric vehicle (EV) batteries that can grow into raging fires—is a key focus of Rogers Corp.


SPE Announces Recently Elected Executive Board Members

SPE is pleased to announce its recently elected Executive Board members, including the positions of President, President-Elect, VP Business & Finance, VP Chapters, and VP Publications.


ANTEC® Recap: Carbon Fiber Improves Fracture Toughness in Printing Trials

The use of carbon fiber to improve the fracture toughness of 3D-printed fused filament fabricated carbon fiber/ABS composites was effective in loadings up to 25 percent, according to research detailed in a May 10 ANTEC® presentation. Optimal results were achieved with 10 percent carbon fiber load.


ANTEC® Recap: Fiber Behavior Is a Focus of Composites Session

Researchers gauge impact of fibers in multiple applications

The May 12 composites session featured several talks characterizing fiber-breakage mechanisms and developing predictive models for discontinuous/short-fiber injection molding materials. It’s well established both that retained fiber length has a major impact on mechanical properties of composites and that, by its nature, injection molding provides many opportunities to break fibers.


ANTEC® Recap: 3D-Printed Culvert Fix Is Planned

Large printed water drainage parts would speed repairs and cost less than conventional versions

Large-scale 3D printing is being evaluated to repair water-diverting highway culverts, according to Sunil Bhandari of the University of Maine, speaking in a virtual ANTEC® presentation on May 10. An experimental culvert diffuser will be installed in Maine in July and tested in October when the autumn rains arrive.


ANTEC® Recap: Dow: Ethylene Polymers Foster Sustainability

Advances in chemistry improve film recyclability, precision of automotive parts and even asphalt

From flexible and rigid packaging to mobility and roads, the boundaries of ethylene polymers are poised to expand and create more sustainable options for everyday uses, according to Dow research presented at ANTEC® 2021 on May 6.


ANTEC® Recap: Moisture Levels Impede ‘Green’ Compounding

Biobased materials generate large volumes of steam that require costly new equipment to process

In addressing the commercialization realities of “green” materials, Adam Dreiblatt of CPM Extrusion Group highlighted the challenges compounders face in delivering performance on existing equipment at acceptable cost.


ANTEC® Recap: How Sweet It Is

Chocolatier and TC Transcontinental work to find sweet spot for sustainable packaging

Canadian chocolatier Chewters is partnering with TC Transcontinental Packaging to develop more sustainable flexible packaging for the former’s ChocoXO brand. Officials from both firms shared what they’ve learned in the effort at a virtual ANTEC® 2021 conference on May 6, moderated by Conor Carlin, SPE’s vice president of sustainability.


ANTEC® Recap: Amcor outlines efforts to make flexible packaging more sustainable

Material reduction and new resin grades are one route to success

Charting end-of-life options for plastics packaging begins at the front end of the process, in the design stage, according to Fabio Peyer, Amcor Ltd.’s sustainability director. 

Speaking on the second day of SPE’s virtual ANTEC® conference, Peyer took attendees through some of the history of the PET bottle, as an example. Compared to the heavy, multimaterial, nonrecyclable PET bottles of the 1990s, today’s equivalent is about 35 percent lighter and recyclable.


ANTEC® Recap: Taking Stock

Panel of journalists at ANTEC® give their take on where the plastics industry is going

It was a brilliant idea: Invite four of the plastics industry’s leading U.S. journalists to participate in a panel discussion on May 5, the opening day of ANTEC®. The result was a one-hour look at trends, influences, achievements and challenges the industry faces. The responses were insightful and enlightening and closed the first day of ANTEC® on a positive note.


ANTEC® Recap: ‘We All Have a Role to Play’

Diversity, equity and inclusion are keys to business success, speaker says

Diversity, equity and inclusion all rely on “I” to make sense. So says Wesleyne Greer, a trained chemist who now helps companies build strong sales teams via her Houston-based company called Transformed Sales. She was the lead outside speaker, kicking off Day 1 of the ANTEC Insights 2021 virtual conference program on May 5.


ANTEC® Recap: ANTEC® Begins

Annual conference gets underway with an appreciation of plastics and a challenge for change

The latest edition of ANTEC, SPE’s Annual Technical Conference, began on May 5, with an address by association president Jaime Gómez touting the positive impact of plastics on life and recognizing the challenges the industry faces in many areas.


ANTEC® Recap: Teamwork Makes a Difference

3M leveraged collaboration with outside partners to tackle the COVID crisis

The COVID-19 pandemic created challenges for everyone, in different ways, across their personal and professional lives. On May 5, attendees of the virtual ANTEC 2021 got a glimpse into how 3M Co., maker of N95 respirator masks, Filtrete air filters and scores of other products, responded to address the crisis.


SPE Webinar, "Thermal Analysis of Plastics," Now Available

No single thermal analysis technique is best suited universally, but together they provide essential data for the characterization of plastics materials. This webinar, presented by Jeffrey Jansen, Engineering Manager and Partner, The Madison Group, reviewed thermal analysis techniques and their application to plastic problem solving through case studies. Webinar registrants can access the webinar recording by clicking here. SPE members can access the recording by going here. Login required.


SPE Annual Report for the Year 2020 Now Available

Through the good works of so many individuals, SPE played an important part in helping to keep the plastics industry strong in 2020 while moving forward headstrong into 2021. We can all take pride in SPE's accomplishments during 2020.


SPE Joins Pworld Technology and Polymerupdate as Organizer for Recycling and Circular Economy Events

SPE, SPE’s India Section and SPE’s Recycling Division have been named collaborating organizers with Pworld Technology PVT LTD and Polymerupdate for an upcoming series of Recycling and Circular Economy (RACE) conferences. Three RACE conferences, each taking place virtually, have been announced for 2021 and early 2022: RACE Asia (July 15-16, 2021); RACE Americas (October 7-8, 2021); and RACE Europe (January 20-21, 2022). RACE conferences, which were launched in 2019, are focused on innovative ways to help the planet heal through recycling and shifting from a linear to a circular economy.


One of the Most Interesting Social Media Accounts in Plastics

SPE was nominated for one of the "Most Interesting Social Media Accounts in Plastics" by Plastics News. But don't take it from us (or Plastics News), see for yourself and give SPE a follow on any of our accounts and find out why!


They Collected One Million Plastic Bottle Caps. Now What?

SPE Foundation and World Design Organization Team with Stamford, Connecticut Students to Pare Plastic Waste in the Environment.


ANTEC® 2021 To Now Take Place in May

SPE’s annual ANTEC® 2021 technical conference is entering its second year as a fully-virtual event but has moved the event dates from March to May. ANTEC® 2021 now starts on May 5th. The May 2021 edition will feature a powerful new online platform, selected to enhance the social and business connections between attendees, speakers, sponsors, and exhibitors.


SPE Announces Four-Year Contract Extension with SPE Foundation Chief Executive Eve Vitale

SPE recently announced a four-year extension of its employment contract with Eve Vitale, SPE Foundation’s Chief Executive. The new contract will run through December 31, 2024. Ms. Vitale joined SPE in 2016.


SPE Announces Four-Year Contract Extension with CEO Patrick Farrey

SPE’s Executive Board announced today a four-year extension of its employment contract with Patrick Farrey, SPE’s CEO. The new contract will run through December 31, 2024. Farrey joined SPE as CEO in June 2017.


SPE Announces HSM Award Recipients for 2021

SPE recently announced the 2021 recipients for its prestigious Honored Service Members (HSM) Award. The SPE HSM program started in 1992 with 347 members named Honored Service Members since the program was launched.


SPE Expands ANTEC® 2021 with Multiple Attendee Options, Enhanced Networking, International Focus

SPE recently announced a new direction for ANTEC® 2021. The 2021 program has been expanded to include three segments: ANTEC® Industry Insights, ANTEC® Classic and ANTEC® International. “Our goal is to deliver a productive and enjoyable experience for attendees while providing a global perspective” said Patrick Farrey, SPE’s CEO.


SPE Webinar, "Taking out the Trash, Plastics Design for the End-of-Life," Now Available

Great products might not last forever, but they usually last a long time. But no matter how great the product is, there will come a point in time where a thing no longer has any value. Then what? This webinar, presented by Eric Larson, Founder, Art of Mass Production™ (AMP), tells you how a product can be designed to account for its expected end of life.


It’s much more than a “Plastics Race”… it’s the SPE Plastics Winter Olympics!!!

Think you’ve got what it takes to win a Gold/Silver/Bronze-colored plastic medal? Compete against your SPE colleagues and test your plastics knowledge by answering a wide variety of questions in this 1st Annual Competition!


Support the SPE Foundation on Giving Tuesday!

This year, the SPE Detroit Section generously donated $60,000 to help the SPE Foundation create PlastiVideo learning modules! PlastiVideos teach students about career opportunities in plastics and include such exciting topics as foam, manufacturing, sustainability, and marine debris. Your support makes it possible to create more content to engage students and help inspire future plastics professionals. In celebration of #GivingTuesday, SPE professional and young professional members can join or renew  SPE on Tuesday, December 1 and $25 of their membership dues will be donated to the SPE Foundation's PlastiVideos Program in their honor. 

Learn more - contact customerrelations@4spe.org.


Both SPE's CEO and VP, Sustainability, on Tap for Upcoming Engineering Event

An expansive educational lineup for Virtual Engineering Week, November 30 – December 4, will kick off each day with a fireside chat and keynote presentation, including Patrick Farrey, SPE's CEO, and Conor Carlin, SPE's VP Sustainability. Both will present at the event on Thursday, December 3rd. 


SPE's Conor Carlin Interviewed by PlasticsToday Magazine

Conor Carlin, SPE's VP Sustainability, will deliver a keynote presentation on adapting plastics consumption habits to a circular economy during Virtual Engineering Week, which is taking place November 30-December 4. In a recent interview with PlasticsToday, he explains what needs to be done and by whom.


Dr. Jaime Gomez, SPE President, to Present at SPE A-NZ Annual Conference

The SPE A-NZ Section is proud to announce that Dr. Jaime Gomez, SPE President, will present a session on Friday, November 20th from 9:00-9:30 a.m. at the SPE A-NZ Annual Conference. Dr. Gomez will focus on the contributions SPE makes to the plastics Industry.


SPE's Webinar, "Navigating Plastic Material Selection," Now Available

This webinar, presented on November 12th by Jeffrey Jansen, Senior Managing Engineer and Partner, The Madison Group, addressed some of the considerations that need to be made when selecting a plastic resin, and outlined the challenges and benefits of selecting an appropriate material.


The National Inventors Hall of Fame is Accepting Nominations for Inductees Into Their Class of 2021.

A candidate for induction into NIHF is required to hold a United States patent that has contributed significantly to the nation’s welfare and the progress of science and useful arts. They are seeking candidates whose patented work is significant to their field, is commercialized and in widespread use, and is having a major impact on our daily lives. NIHF considers both living and deceased candidates. Nominations can be submitted at www.invent.org/inductees/nominate-inventor. There is no cost to make a nomination and the deadline is Feb 15, 2021. List of inductees by alphabetical order can be found here: www.invent.org/inductees/nominate-inventor.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Understanding Wear of Plastics," Now Available

This webinar, presented by Jeff Jansen, Senior Managing Engineer and Partner, The Madison Group, addressed the mechanisms of wear in plastics.


Conor Carlin Pushes Sustainability Through SPE Position

Conor Carlin is managing director for Illig North America, and was recently named VP Sustainability of SPE. He spoke with Plastics Machinery Magazine editor Ron Shinn about his 20-year career in the plastics industry and how SPE is encouraging sustainable practices.


SPE's Webinar, "This is Not the Wild West: Sustainability Definitions," Now Available

With continued interest in and development of sustainable plastics, it is clear that not everyone is working with the same lexicon. Terms such as 'degradable', 'bio-degradable', 'recyclable', and 'compostable' are subject to misunderstandings, misinterpretations, or outright fraudulent claims. SPE's latest webinar, "This is Not the Wild West: Sustainability Definitions, Standards, and Regulations" which took place on October 13th and was presented by Kelvin Okamoto, President, Green Bottom Line and Founder/CEO of Gen3Bio, addressed how ASTM standards are being used to create a common understanding based on science and testing. He also addressed the commonalities and differences among standards, certifications, and regulations.

  Welcome Page