Presented by SPE Thermoplastic Elastomers Technical Interest Group and SPE Akron Section
September 20-22, 2022
Hilton Akron Fairlawn Hotel and Suites
3180 West Market Street
Akron, Ohio 44333
The 15th SPE Thermoplastic Elastomers Conference 2022 will focus on:
An explanation of the fundamental differences in several key process variables occurring in both single and twin-screw extrusion, with an emphasis on melting mechanisms and the presentation of a newly designed melting section.
Mechanical recycling is the most cost-effective plastic recycling method worldwide. While plastics’ applications have become more demanding, and more advanced recycling methods are needed, this traditional manner of recycling, despite its limitations, will continue to be an important part of plastic recycling. It is for this reason that technology developers and equipment manufacturing companies continue to work on improving the way to recycle plastics, focusing on PET, HDPE, and PP, the three thermoplastics most suitable to be mechanically recycled. Most appealingly, the economics of processing scrap to flakes indicate that mechanical recycling can produce recycled pellets that can be economically competitive against virgin material.
Marisabel is a Senior Consultant in NexantECA. She has participated in several world-wide sustainability studies involving technology evaluations, economics, and strategic planning for thermoplastics and renewables. Recently, Marisabel has been the co-author of numerous multiclient reports that have focused on conversion and depolymerization recycling technologies of plastics waste as well as gasification of MSW. A Honduran native, she received a B.S. and M.S. in Chemical Engineering from Manhattan College.
The last few years have noticeably increased the industry pressure for enhancing sustainability and establishing a circular economy. Approaches to circular design encompass multiple options from enhanced recyclability to the use of recycled or renewable materials to reduce the use of conventional resins. Engineered for a circular economy, Kraton’s CirKular+ innovations bring a holistic approach to product lifecycle by enabling end-of-life recyclability, enhanced PCR quality, and reusability of mixed plastic waste. Easy to use CirKular+ additives unlock a balanced approach to PCR performance and value enhancement across the value chain as a drop-in solution. The dry blending of CirKular+ additives offers a cost-effective approach as additives in virgin and recycled polypropylene without compromise in mechanical properties. Recycling applications formulated with CirKular+ grades have been shown to increase the amount of recycled content and improve product performance, processability, and aesthetics. In this presentation, we will corroborate the positive contributions of CirKular+ polymers in recycling applications with data and case studies.
Freddy has spent more than 30 years of his career focused on developing Styrenic block copolymers and new applications. Freddy is passionate about enabling innovative solutions to meet unmet market needs with a broad experience in polymer modification, compounding and automotive applications. Most recently, Freddy has been supporting the launch of CirKular+™, a new Kraton product line to enable plastics upcycling and circular solutions.
The past decade has made it abundantly clear that the human race must speed up its transition to a circular economy for plastics, where this valuable resource that is intertwined with our life’s evolutionary fabric, never turns into waste or pollution. As stakeholders in the plastic industry unfold a common vision of “No Plastics in Nature”, it is encouraging to note the progress made by manufacturers, corporates and governments across the globe in setting base-line targets for plastic waste reduction and improving its proper end-of-life management.
Yet, beyond goal-setting, the next essential imperative will be to efficiently measure and track circular actions and progress as we continue inching closer to 2030. By introducing waste traceability in recycled plastics, using digital verification of material composition and chain-of-custody documents through waste conversion supply-chains, there exists a viable and scalable solution to improve plastic waste management at a country, state, town or street level while inspiring more support from end-consumers too.
In verifying how sustainability commitments translate into real action, the need for reliable authentication systems that track how waste is being cut or managed across the plastic value-chain is also abundantly clear: Waste transparency supports circular economy principles in three major areas, viz. ensuring ethical and quality sourcing through provenance details, determining recycled material compositions to understand fitment for recycling and tracking material flows for better waste management on a system level.
By enabling sharing of certified data on waste collection to conversion digitally, plastic producers, brand owners and recyclers have the opportunity to trigger higher assurance and confidence in their recycled plastic portfolios and processes. With radical transparency, the outcome intended is equal stakeholder accountability and participation in keeping plastics in our economy and out of the environment.
In the next 30 years, the world will be discarding about 3.4 billion tons of total waste as estimated by the World Bank. That’s a high 70% jump from 2.01 billion tons disposed in 2016. If countries and industries are to make an effective transition away from a linear economy, validating recycled content claims made by inter-connecting stakeholders through an authenticated, traceable loop, is a reasonable way forward to trigger self-perpetuation.
Towards this end, AVI Global Plast has built a digital platform for waste traceability that shares Chain-of-Custody overview, documentation and certifications, right from waste collection to a new package. Such traceability can chiefly serve regulatory compliance, consumer safety and brand integrity needs. The latter especially holds relevance as regulators worldwide step-up screenings against “greenwashing”.
With a one-source digital dashboard for recycled plastics, brand owners can track circular packaging through their transformative journeys with ease. Besides offering key certification & documentation, AVI’s waste traceability platform is designed to let partners access to raw material break-up (post-consumer waste, post-industrial waste, virgin content) for measuring sustainability progress. In terms of environmental impact, estimates of CO2 emission savings, landfill avoidance and the number of post-consumer PET bottles recycled are also made available.
Since going circular would heavily rely on inspired and informed consumers, triggering positive behavioral change towards more recycling and segregation at source is crucial too. Here, a digitalized recycled packaging platform like AVI Trace makes QR codes available for every batch of recycled packaging supplied. This QR code can be printed on finished packages, letting consumers access complete packaging provenance and positive environmental impacts at the touch of a smartphone. The expected consequence is to influence purchase decision-making and loyalty towards more transparent and reliable sustainability claims by brands.
In summary, this white paper highlights the needs and benefits of introducing radical transparency in recycled plastic packaging value-chains. It supports the collective imperative of achieving circularity by the turn of this decade and sheds light on why waste traceability matters today, what loopholes must first be closed to achieve full circularity and the potential business benefits that may be reaped with improved data confidence through digitalized waste management pathways.
New technology Boundary Breaker allows user to incorporate higher level recycled material PCR by breaking down contaminates and increase mixing to give better distribution of PCR and other additives. Incorporated at low levels Boundary Breaker will reduce viscosity and improving the flowability of the polymer without reducing physical strength.
Currently he is Co-owner and the Head of Research and Development specializing in materials fluid interfaces for Ecopuro. Ecopuro is company that develops new technologies through advanced materials.
Masters in Chemical Engineering, with over 25 years’ experience in R&D within aerospace other industries. Where he has worked doing research and development with companies such as: NASA, the Pentagon , Ballistic Missile Defense, Boeing, Raytheon, Army, 3M, BASF, Behr, Canon, Toyota to mention a few and has over 200 patents filed globally.
How do you walk the walk after you’ve talked the talk? You pledged your company to sustainability goals such as increasing plastic recycle content and reducing carbon footprint – but, how do you get there? There’s more to Plastics Technology Innovation than Industry 4.0. There’s just so much you can do with software and hardware. Optimization cannot be achieved without first making more efficient use of the materials in the products you make
My mission in life is to teach the more efficient use of raw materials and – as an entrepreneur who has been signing payroll checks for half-a-century – and an inventor with thousands of global patents by me and my customers – I will show how it can be done. We will look at how polymers are made – and how they are compounded – and provide solutions that will reduce cleaning and sorting and allow you to mix all the polymers and fillers in a melt compounder and make a better product faster.
The extruder becomes a reactor for coupling and catalysis of all the materials in the recycle fed into the hopper. Here’s how:
Current plastic recycling and sustainability goals are limited by the intrinsic incompatibility of many polymers and the negative effect of fillers and impurities on end-product properties thus requiring a high degree of expensive sorting, separating and cleaning. Another barrier is the melt processing of polymers causes chain scissoring resulting in recycle and regrind materials having inferior properties compared to virgin. Current compatibilizers offered to recyclers are based on co-polymers or maleic anhydride modified polymers. Co-polymer compatibilizers require extensive sorting to match up the polarities of the recycled materials and maleic anhydride depolymerizes condensation polymers such as PET and Nylon obviating their use in post-consumer recycle. MAH technology claims to be a coupling agent, which is true for rebuilding molecular weight – but, misnomered when applied to coupling filler and organic interfaces.
Ziegler–Natta catalysts have been used in the commercial manufacture of various polyolefins since 1956. Ziegler showed a combination of TiCl4 and Al(C2H5)2Cl gave comparable activities for the production of polyethylene. Natta used crystalline α-TiCl3 in combination with Al(C2H5)3 to produce the first isotactic polypropylene. Kaminsky discovered that titanocene and related complexes emulated some aspects of these Ziegler-Natta catalysts but with low activity. He subsequently found that high activity could be achieved upon activation of these metallocenes with methylaluminoxane (MAO) −[O−Al(CH3)]n). Monte uses either a Monoalkoxy or Neoalkoxy Titanate in combination with Al2SIO5 mixed metal catalyst in Powder & Pellet forms for In Situ Macromolecular Repolymerization and Copolymerization in the melt – i.e. Polymer Compatibilization… AND … The Neoalkoxy Titanate proton coordinates with inorganic fillers and organic particulates to couple/compatibilize the dissimilar interfaces at the nano-atomic level thus reducing the need for expensive sorting of materials in Recycled Plastics.
Salvatore J. Monte, President of Kenrich Petrochemicals, Inc.; Bachelor Civil Engineering-Structures, Manhattan College; M.S.-Polymeric Materials, NYU Tandon School of Engineering; Member Plastics Hall of Fame 2021-the Plastics Academy; Society Plastics Engineers Fellow & Honored Service Member; Licensed P.E.; Plastics Industry Association Recycle Subcommittee-Compatibilizers; Board of Governors, Plastics Pioneers Association-MTS Newsletter Chair; 32-U.S. Patents – most recent US Patent 2020/0071230 A1 dated Mar. 5, 2020; Lectured Worldwide on Titanate & Zirconate Coupling agents; 450-American Chemical Society CAS Abstracts of published “Works by S.J. Monte”; Classified Top Secret for Solid Rocket Fuel and Energetic Composites Patents for the Insensitive Munitions Program; Lifetime member of the National Defense Industrial Association; Lifetime Member of the BOD-SPE ThermoPlastics Materials & Foams Division – Annual Scholarship named: Salvatore J. Monte Thermoplastic Materials & Foams Division Scholarship; External Advisory Committee-UCF NanoScience Technology Center; former Chairman of the NYRG-ACS Rubber Division; former President of the SPE P-NJ Section; Testified several times before Congress on Trade and IP Protection; Business Man of the Year 2015-Bayonne Chamber of Commerce; Federated Society Coatings Technology C. Homer Flynn Award for Technical Excellence; Recipient of the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award; Rotary Paul Harris Fellow; UA Million Miler; Member PIA, ACMA, SPE, ACS, ACS Rubber Division, ASCE, AIChE, SAMPE, the GRAPHENE COUNCIL, the Vinyl Sustainability Council.
Traditional plastic tools for thick gauge thermoforming suffer from long cycle times and short lives due to their low thermal conductivity and poor strength. In this talk, a glass-reinforced plastic tool produced by additive manufacturing and featuring a novel vent hole design is tested and evaluated. Vent holes designed to be produced via additive manufacturing were utilized to cool the tool with compressed air during sheet heating. A simple mathematical finite difference model allows estimation of the impact of changes to the vent hole size and spacing. This approach to vent hole design results in tools that achieve a competitive cycle time and survive 200 production cycles when producing parts made from 0.080” thick ABS sheets.
Ned Moore is an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, CT. In addition to recent work in thermoforming, he has published papers on non-destructive damage detection, helicopter blade design, and legged robots. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Connecticut and received his MS and bachelor’s degrees from McGill University in Montreal. He spent five years as a design engineer for FuelCell Energy of Danbury, CT.
Fused filament fabrication (FFF) is one of the most widely used additive manufacturing (AM) processes because it uses inexpensive equipment, and it can print a wide range of polymeric materials. Moreover, FFF and its variances are gaining attraction 3D printing of metals, composites, and ceramics as well. Material properties, part design, slicing parameters, and process conditions influence the printed part quality. To achieve optimal and efficient results, the influence of each of these variables and their interrelationships need to be investigated. However, such investigations using ‘experimental trial-and-error approach’ or ‘empirical methods’ would have limited scope. Hence, computational simulations and design solutions are required to reduce the dependency on experimental methods. Hence, this paper investigates the applicability of a thermo-mechanical process simulation tool for the FFF process and the prediction of dimensional variations and residual stresses in FFF printed parts using a polymer compound. The simulation results were further corroborated by experimental printing and part evaluations. This validation enables the printing process simulation to be used as a ‘design for additive manufacturing’ tool.
Weld lines notoriously cause a localized reduction in mechanical properties for injection molded plastic parts. When glass fibers are added to thermoplastic resins for the purpose of increasing strength and stiffness, this effect is magnified due to a disturbance in fiber orientation and reduced polymer chain entanglement at the weld line. The addition of an offset overflow well can mitigate this strength reduction effect by reorienting the glass fibers and increasing chain entanglement. A comparison of three ASTM Type 1 Tensile Bars (one gate, two gates, and two gates + offset overflow well) is used to demonstrate the effect of the offset overflow well on the modulus of the part at the weld line location. This study demonstrates that the use of an offset overflow well can be an effective method for reducing mechanical property loss at the weld line location for glass-filled injection molded parts, which can be critical for the successful design of structural parts.
Amanda Nicholson attended the University of Akron, where she earned her degree in Chemical Engineering, with a focus on Polymer Science. Through her work at the Polymers Center of Excellence in Charlotte, NC, she taught industry professionals as well as University of North Carolina - Charlotte students the basics of injection molding processing. Certifications from the AIM Institute, Paulson and RJG prepared her to process a wide variety of experimental thermoplastic resins on a wide range of injection molding machines. Amanda’s current role is Customer Success Engineer at Moldex3D where she supports customers with their simulations and creates engaging content on LinkedIn, showing how simulation can be used to solve injection molding problems that cause recalls, production delays, and loss of profit.
Non-halogenated flame retardant polyolefin compounds have become a new trend for different markets and applications to comply with strict environmental regulations. PMC Polymer Products has developed new compounds using EVA, LLDPE or LDPE as carrier resins for transparent film applications, using an innovative and propriety non-halogenated flame retardant package. The compounds only show a minor change in the film’s transparency while meeting the UL-94 VTM-0 flame retardant standard for film applications. In addition, the compounds contain a UV stabilizing package that helps resisting UV light, demonstrated by internal QUV study data. A masterbatch approach of this technology is also under development.
An Du obtained her Ph.D. degree in Chemical Engineering from Drexel University, PA and is currently a Product Development Manager at PMC Polymer Products, focusing on developing different polymeric masterbatch and compounds for the flame retardant market as well as other applications. Before joining PMC Polymer Products, An worked at Arkema Inc. and Behr Process Corporation with various roles in R&D, technical service and business development for the coating and polymer resin markets.