SPE Insight


Winners of ACCE & Rehkopf Scholarships to be Honored at ACCE 2020

The organizing committee for the SPE Automotive Composites Conference & Exhibition (ACCE) today announced the winners of the group’s annual SPE ACCE scholarships and the Dr. Jackie Rehkopf scholarships from an endowed fund that has been set up to honor the long-time SPE ACCE committee member, SPE Automotive Division board member, and automotive composites researcher. SPE ACCE and Rehkopf scholarship winners will be honored at the SPE ACCE Virtual Event, Sept. 9 - 11, 2020. Both scholarships are administered as part of the SPE Foundation.


Winners of ACCE & REHKOPF Scholarships to be honored at ACCE 2019

The organizing committee for the SPE Automotive Composites Conference & Exhibition (ACCE) announced the winners of the group’s annual SPE ACCE scholarships and the Dr. Jackie Rehkopf scholarships from an endowed fund that has been set up to honor the long-time SPE ACCE committee member, SPE Automotive Division board member, and automotive composites researcher.


Why Presenting at ANTEC® 2020 is Important

ANTEC® 2020, taking place March 30-April 2 in San Antonio, TX, is the largest, most respected and well-known technical conference in the plastics industry. SPE is now accepting paper submissions for publication and presentation. Present the latest topics in industrial, national laboratory and academic work. Raise awareness and share your findings in polymer research or new and improved products and technologies. 


Webinar: Using Your Process Data to Solve Quality, Downtime, and Production Problems

As Industry 4.0 gains momentum in the plastics industry, many are calculating the risk-reward ratio of becoming early adopters. To truly understand the urgency of starting your Industry 4.0 project, consider what you’re losing by not innovating, specifically: the cost of poor quality, downtime, and competitiveness.

In this session, you will learn why the process data and analytics provided by Industry 4.0 solutions are the most important part of industrial automation and how they can help you solve your production problems.


Webinar: Strengthening Your Emotional and Social Intelligence

Studies show that higher levels of emotional intelligence and social intelligence are what separates top performers from average performers. And emotional and social intelligence impacts almost everything we say and do!

When professionals build and leverage their emotional and social intelligence, they are better equipped to develop rewarding strategic partnerships, increase their influence and boost their performance.


Webinar: Sandwich Panel Design and Thermoplastic Honeycomb Technology Overview

The seminar aims at review of available sandwich panel technologies, with the focus on configuration with thermoplastic honeycomb core being accepted in more and more applications today. The principles and benefits of sandwich panel design will be presented, along to post-processing techniques and examples of applications starting from a lower end of industrial packaging, through building and transportation, including but not limited to automotive.


Webinar: Resume 101-You've Written Your Resume-Now What?

This webinar, presented by David Peterson, Managing Partner for Direct Recruiters, will focus on resume development, looking for job opportunities, networking, interview types and tips, getting offers and more. Peterson manages and oversees DRI search and recruitment teams in the Plastics and Flexible Packaging industries.


Webinar: How Cooling Line and Mold Design Influence Plastic Part Cost and Performance

Cycle time optimization is often one of the main objectives when designing and constructing the mold. However, the majority of a molding cycle is often dictated by the cooling time. Therefore, it is strange that in the mold design process the integration and design of the cooling line layout and high conductivity inserts is often left toward the end of the design process where the design envelops has been drastically reduced. It is also commonly believed that the placement of the cooling lines is the only driver for properly cooling the part, and its design only influences the manufacturability of the part.


Webinar: Design = Emotion + Function

What makes a product successful? It’s always a blend of both functional and emotional attributes that together create beauty in a product. This webinar will focus on these attributes and their proper application in the entire spectrum of the product design and development process.


Webinar: Creep Failure of Plastics

Creep is the tendency of a polymeric material to deform permanently under the influence of constant stress, as applied through tensile, compressive, shear, or flexural loading. It occurs as a function of time through extended exposure to levels of stress that are below the yield strength of the material. Given sufficient time, this can lead to creep rupture, the failure within a material as a result of continuously applied stress at a level below the tensile strength. Plastic materials are particularly prone to creep rupture through exposure to static stresses, and a recent study indicates that 22% of plastic failures are associated with creep.


Webinar: Conversations That Matter: Managing Accountability in Others

An organization’s ability to manage accountability is key to its success. Among top-performing organizations, 77 percent of leaders reported employees of all levels are held accountable for results, according to an OnPoint Consulting survey. Only 44 percent of leaders said this was true at less successful organizations. Learn how to recognize and measure accountability, manage accountability more effectively and evaluate how well your team or organization is performing in this area.

Many leaders would say they want to create a culture of accountability, but what does this look like when it’s put into practice? How can you measure accountability within your team or organization? What are some challenges that keep you from holding others accountable? How do you respond to someone who makes excuses?


Webinar: Budgeting 101 - Can I afford that?

You’re nearing graduation; Yeah!
Cannot wait to start getting multiple job offers; double Yeah!
Now you have multiple job offers; oh Crap!
How do you choose which one to pick; double Crap!

Hopefully this webinar will help put some quantitative decision making around a very complex choice: what job offer will you choose to start your career and how do you know you’ll make enough money to thrive?!


Webinar: Basic Rubber Technology

This webinar will introduce the attendees to the basics and most important topics related to thermoset rubber compounds. About 15 billion kilograms of rubber are produced ever year. Rubber finds its way into wide range of applications in the automotive, medical, appliance, electrical, and chemical industries. As a class of materials, rubber has many useful properties because of its unique molecular structure. These include being soft and relatively flexible, high ultimate elongation coupled with good elastic recovery, useful over a wide temperature range, and good chemical resistance.


Webinar: An Introduction to Dynamic Mechanical Analysis

Dynamic Mechanical Analysis(DMA) is a thermoanalytical technique that measures the stiffness (modulus) and damping (tan delta) of polymeric materials to assess the viscoelastic properties as a function of time, temperature, and frequency. Polymeric materials display both elastic and viscous behavior simultaneously, and DMA can separate these responses. Polymers, composed of long molecular chains, have unique viscoelastic properties, which combine the characteristics of elastic solidsand Newtonian fluids.


Webinar: "ANTEC® 101: Conveying Value to Upper Management" Available for Viewing

Are you someone that fears going into your supervisor’s office to request permission to attend ANTEC®? Have you ever been greeted with a hasty “no way, your time is better spent in the lab” when asking for funding to travel to any conference? If so, this webinar is for you. In this webinar, Jason Lyons, Business Manager of Arkema’s Kepstan®PEKK Product Line, will guide you through several strategies that he has used over his career to not only obtain funding to attend ANTEC®, but to support other SPE initiatives along the way.


Volunteers Will Be Recognized As Honored Service Members During SPE's ANTEC® 2019

BETHEL, CT—Feb 20, 2019: At SPE’s ANTEC® 2019 in March, the SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals will introduce two new Honored Service Members who are being recognized for their contributions to the Society.


Volunteers Will Be Recognized as Honored Service Members During SPE's ANTEC® 2018 @NPE2018

BETHEL, CT, U.S.A., March 1, 2018, 2018: At SPE’s ANTEC® 2018 @NPE2018 in May, the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) will introduce two new Honored Service Members who are being recognized for their contributions to the Society.


Unpackaging a Brand: A Look Inside the New SPE

We are excited to announce the launch of our new brand identity and relaunch of the SPE website.


Townsend Solutions Becomes SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals First Preferred Partner

BETHEL, CT—January 31, 2019: SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals announced today that Townsend Solutions is SPE's first Preferred Partner. An SPE Preferred Partner is a converter, manufacturer, solutions provider or product distributor that has been recognized by SPE for demonstrated leadership and innovation in the plastics industry.


Time Out: How to Prepare for Time Away from the Office

At some point you’re going to need to take more than a day or two off of work. It might be for a vacation, it might be for parental leave, or it might be for something you didn’t plan on like sick relative or an accident. Obviously the unplanned absences are harder to prepare for (unless you have a solid Magic 8 Ball on your side), but there are a few things you could do so you don’t leave your company in the lurch should that type of situation come up. Here are some of the ways you can be prepared to take off, whatever the situation may be.


Third Keynote Announced for SPE ACCE 2019 - Composites on the New Chevrolet Corvette

The executive planning committee for the SPE® Automotive Composites Conference & Expo (ACCE) is announcing the third keynote speaker for their 19th annual event September 4 – 6, 2019 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Mich. in the Detroit suburbs. 


Speakers Announced for Plastics in Aerospace: The Virtual Edition

SPE recently announced a new virtual event focused on plastics in the aerospace industry. The first offering in SPE’s “Plastics In…” virtual series, Plastics in Aerospace: The Virtual Edition, taking place May 18-19, 2020, is a one and half day live online event that is focused on insights from aerospace industry leaders. Plastics performance, material innovations, supply chain challenges and solutions, and how plastics usage is growing in aerospace will be addressed. Event co-chairs Dr. Jason Lyons, SPE Vice President/Divisions, and Dr. Scott Eastman, SPE Vice President/Sections, are guiding the speaker selection process.


SPE’s Latest Webinar Now Available in the SPE Library

Introduction to Design for Rotational Molding, presented on September 18th by Michael Paloian, President, Integrated Design Systems, is focused on the rotational molding process, applications and basic design guidelines. Webinar highlights include the distinctions between rotational molding and other processes (i.e. injection molding) and touches on gaining technical knowledge and learning basic skills necessary to understanding rotational molding. Introduction to Design for Rotational Molding and dozens of recorded webinars are currently available to SPE members in the SPE Library


SPE’s Plastics Engineering magazine-enhanced capabilities and functionality now available

SPE’s Plastics Engineering magazine is now housed in Wiley Online Library. The capabilities and functionality of the library enhance the reader experience by providing access to back-file content back to 2007, full-text search and inclusion in collections. As a benefit of membership, SPE members will continue to have full online access to the publication, along with SPE’s three journals, by logging in through SPE’s website, www.4spe.org.


SPE's Latest 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.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "MultiDrive Rheo-DMA Platform," is Now Available

This webinar, presented by Dr. Abhishek Shetty, Lead Scientist, Anton Paar USA Rheology Division, on March 24th, looks at how DMA can be used to gain a better understanding of the viscoelastic and thermal properties of your material. The theoretical basics of DMA measurements are also covered along with the test methods and their resulting information. Access to this webinar is open to all.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Improve Your Chromatography with Refractive Index," is Now Available

Presented by Tobias Husemann, Product Management Team Leader, Anton Paar, on August 27th, Improve Your Chromatography with Refractive Index focused on how you can minimize uncertainty — and expensive errors - with a fast, highly-precise refractive index measurement. Featured topics in this webinar included: GPC calibration process; the role played by dn/dc values; how a refractometer can improve the GPC calibration process; and requirements and the specifications your refractometer must meet.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "iMFLUX's Novel Low, Constant Pressure Molding Technology" Now Available

SPE's latest webinar, "iMFLUX's Novel Low, Constant Pressure Molding Technology Overcomes Traditional Barriers to Achieving A Truly Sustainable, Circular Operation," presented by Gene Altonen, Chief Technology Officer, iMFLUX, discusses one of the biggest challenges facing the plastics industry today -- the need for technology solutions that enable a Circular Economy. This is especially true for injection molded parts, where operational tradeoffs are often encountered when running many sustainable materials.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Giving High Impact Feedback," Now Available in SPE Library

Giving High Impact Feedback, presented on October 17 by Rick Lepsinger, Managing Partner, OnPoint Consulting, is focused on helping managers and team leaders create a climate that supports open feedback, provides strategies to reduce defensiveness, and ensures feedback is perceived as useful.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy," is Now Available in SPE Library

Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy in Failure and Compositional Analysis, presented on January 9 by Jeffrey A. Jansen, Senior Managing Engineer and Partner, The Madison Group, is focused on the technique for the analysis of organic materials. It provides critical information in the evaluation of polymeric materials, including material identification, contamination, and degradation. This webinar features a fundamental understanding of the technique.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Failure Associated with Injection Molding," Now Available in SPE Library

Failure Associated with Injection Molding Defects, presented on December 12 by Jeffrey A. Jansen, Senior Managing Engineer and Partner, The Madison Group, is focused on preventative measures in injection molding, including appropriate material selection, proper mold design, and process development.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Degradation Failure of Plastics," Now Available in SPE Library

Degradation Failure of Plastics, presented on October 10 by Jeffrey A. Jansen, Senior Managing Engineer and Partner, The Madison Group, is focused on plastics susceptibility to molecular degradation through a variety of exposures. Topics include: plastic molecular degradation; material susceptibility to degradation; stabilizers to prevent degradation; testing; and more.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Compensation of Plastics Professionals," is Now Available in the SPE Library

This webinar, presented by Dennis Gros, MBS Advisors, on January 14th, looks at salary trends and the factors that affect your money. Gros provides an overview of the past five years of employment in the plastics industry. Specifically, he analyzes the growth curve of compensation for roles in manufacturing, engineering, sales, supply chain, and general management.


SPE's Latest Webinar, "Bumps & Bruises: Starting Your First Real Job," Now Available in SPE Library

Bumps & Bruises: Starting Your First Real Job, presented on October 1 by Jeremy Dworshak, Plastics Engineer, Steinwall, is focused on maneuvering through the landscape of your first job. Topics covered include understanding your role in the workplace, effectively working with peers, planning your future and more. Bumps & Bruises: Starting Your First Real Job and dozens of recorded webinars are currently available to SPE members in the SPE Library


SPE's 2019 Audit Report Now Available

The auditor's report for SPE's financial statements, which are comprised of financial position statements as of December 31, 2019 and 2018, are now available for viewing.


SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals Joins the Societies Consortium on Sexual Harassment in STEMM

BETHEL, CT—SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals announced today that its partnering with more than fifty-three other leading societies to form the Societies Consortium on Sexual Harassment in STEMM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine).


SPE to Recognize Newly Named ‘Fellows’ At ANTEC® 2019

BETHEL, CT—Feb 19, 2019: At March’s SPE ANTEC® 2019 in Detroit, MI, SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals will introduce twelve new Fellows who are being recognized for their contributions to the Society.


SPE to Recognize Newly Named 'Fellows' at ANTEC® 2018 @NPE2018

BETHEL, CT, U.S.A., Feb 27, 2018: At May’s SPE ANTEC® 2018 @NPE2018, the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) will introduce nine new Fellows who are being recognized for their contributions to the Society.


SPE to Honor Achievements of Industry Leaders at ANTEC® 2018 @NPE2018

BETHEL, CT, U.S.A., Feb. 21, 2018: SPE (Society of Plastics Engineers) will present its annual awards for outstanding contributions to the plastics industry to three distinguished individuals during SPE ANTEC® 2018 @NPE2018.


SPE Thermoset Division Announces Reduced Rate for Students to Attend TopCon 2020

The SPE Thermoset Div. is announcing a special reduced rate of only $100 for students to attend their annual TopCon event to be held on May 12 – 13, 2020 at the Monona Terrace and Convention Center in Madison, Wisconsin.


SPE Thermoset Division Announces First Keynote for TopCon 2020

The SPE Thermoset Div. is announcing its first keynote speaker for their annual TopCon event to be held on May 12 – 13, 2020 at the Monona Terrace and Convention Center in Madison, Wisconsin. “Thermosets - a Historical and Future Perspective," will be presented by Professor Tim A. Osswald, Director of the Polymer Engineering Center (PEC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.


SPE Thermoforming Division announces scholarship recipients

Five nationwide to receive scholarships from the SPE Thermoforming Division. Recipient information can be found here.


SPE Student Membership Provides Career Growth Opportunities

For more than 5 years, SPE, with the financial support of the PLASTICS Industry Association, has provided free memberships to undergraduate and graduate students who are in plastics-related fields of study. Although the participation of PLASTICS has ended, SPE has not only maintained its free Student Membership option, the Society has extended this membership offering to young professionals during their first two years of working in the industry.


SPE Recent Webinar, "Impact Failure of Plastics," Available in SPE Library

SPE's recent webinar, "Impact Failure of Plastics," presented by Jeff Jansen, Senior Managing Engineer and Partner, The Madison Group, discusses impact loads, which are among the most challenging stresses that plastic component designers and manufactures must deal with. In many cases impact stress is not adequately accounted for and can lead to unnecessary premature or unexpected failure. Jansen's webinar looks at this issue and potential solutions.


SPE President’s Cup Award Recipient Announced

SPE is pleased to announce Dr. Brian Grady as recipient of the Society’s President’s Cup award for 2020. The award was presented to Dr. Grady during SPE’s Honors and Awards Ceremony, which was presented virtually this year on June 30. Dr. Brian Landes, SPE’s outgoing President, presented the award to Dr. Grady during the ceremony.


SPE Offers Members This Is Plastics® Program in Collaboration with Plastics Industry Association

BETHEL,CT—SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals announced today a licensing agreement with PLASTICS Industry Association’s for its This is Plastics® program.


SPE Milwaukee Chapter Celebrates 75th Anniversary

This year, the SPE Milwaukee Section is celebrating its 75th anniversary as a chapter in the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE). Since 1944, SPE Milwaukee has focused on spreading knowledge, strengthening skills and promoting plastics throughout the state of Wisconsin. 


SPE Launches Open Access Journal: SPE Polymers

SPE recently announced the launch of SPE Polymers, a peer-reviewed, fully open access journal dedicated to all aspects of polymer science, polymer engineering, and polymer technology. Open access provides the opportunity to quickly make article acceptance decisions leading to prompt online publication. SPE Polymers articles are immediately open upon publication which also allows for faster broadcasting of research data to a much broader audience.


SPE Launches Interactive Exhibitor Directory as the First of Many new Features at ANTEC® 2019

BETHEL, CT, U.S.A. July 24, 2018: With only eight months leading up to ANTEC® 2019 in Detroit, SPE-Inspiring Plastics Professionals (Society of Plastics Engineers) debuted a new online exhibitor directory and floor plan that benefits both exhibitors and attendees.


SPE Journal Welcomes New Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Vinyl & Additive Technology

Dr. Prithu Mukhopadhyay is the new editor-in-chief of the Journal of Vinyl & Additive Technology (JVAT). He will assume his role on May 1, 2020. He succeeds Randy Brown who served as the editor of the journal since 2015.