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I admit that in retrospect, 2019 will certainly not be one of my favorite years in many respects, but uncertain and challenging times always bring something good with them, if you continue to move forward with confidence and courage, act counter-cyclically!
And so, in a time of economic uncertainty and the associated cutbacks in advertising budgets, trade conflicts, “plastic bashing”, and the demise of publishing houses, we have dared to launch a new magazine at K 2019:
The focus of RE3 is on Circular Economy. The three keywords “REduce”, “REuse”, “REcycle” appear again and again. In RE3 you can read what they stand for, and which interesting approaches and solutions are available. The magazine is published four times a year in German and English in PRINT and online. Visit www.re3.today and follow us also on Twitter and LinkedIn. Issue 01 will be published at the end of March.
The content of the magazine’s coverage focuses on solutions the industry is developing – new products, technical developments and information about companies that provide systemic solutions. In addition, it includes definitions of terms, scientific research results, pro-con comparisons, business news and articles about people in the industry and associations.
A critical view of the ongoing discussion is also necessary within the industry. Our focus is on a future-oriented and responsible handling of the valuable material plastics. “Green Washing” is out of place in RE3.
Although RE3 is not a technical magazine, it is managed in terms of content and sales by the expert staff of Dr. Gupta Verlags GmbH, who are also your contacts for all questions. RE3 is published by INDIGU Publishing.
With a new publisher, we have the opportunity to contribute with expertise and knowledge to the social discussion about the pros and cons of the various plastics in our everyday lives – extending the scope beyond the plastics industry.
Confident that our courage has paid off, and hopefully with your support, we look forward to communicating the know-how of the industry and the future possibilities and solutions to an ever broader audience.
Thanks to an in-depth research and colour-finding project recently completed in partnership with Clariant ColorWorks, the Italian TPE compounder Francesco Franceschetti Elastomeri (FFE) now has a competitive edge in one of its primary markets – ski boots.
The Center of Automotive Management (CAM) at University of Applied Sciences of Economy (FHDW) in Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, regularly examines the innovations of automotive manufacturers in the field of electromobility, as well as sales developments and trends in important automotive key markets. Since 2005, vehicle technology innovations of currently more than 40 automotive manufacturers have been surveyed each quarter according to approximately 50 defined criteria such as field of technology, innovation type, originality, maturity level, etc. and individually evaluated using the MOBIL (Maturity, Originality, Benefit, Innovation Level) approach. The complete study AutomotiveInnovations 2019 identifies the future trends of automotive manufacturers from countries such as Europe, Japan, the USA, and China. The Electromobility Report regularly analyses the electromobility market and the sales developments of the automotive manufacturers. The focus is on the core markets of China, the USA and the European Union. The following report presents some key statements of CAM’s current market studies “AutomotiveInnovations 2019” and “Electromobility Report 2020”.
The automotive industry is under economic and transformation pressure worldwide. On the one hand, the transition to electric mobility must be shouldered. On the other hand, the poor state of the industry as a result of the US customs wars under President Donald Trump is causing concern. Switching to electro mobility will result in the loss of jobs in the industry, which cannot be compensated for by the growth processes in the coming years. Important value creation in the internal combustion engine sector will be lost bit by bit and replaced by highly automated battery and electric motor production.
With its broad range of TPEs and specific focus on the trends and challenges of electromobility, Kraiburg TPE says that it is in a good position to support OEMs and system suppliers in advancing decisive innovations in this fast-growing market segment.
The annual TPE conference in Nuremberg, Germany, will be hosted in 2020 by SKZ Das Kunststoffzentrum and accompanied by the VDI and the German Rubber Industry Association (wdk). The conference will take place from 24 – 25 June 2020 in the Karl-Bröger-Zentrum just a short walk away from Nuremberg’s main station. In the run-up to the industry meeting, on 23 June, the plenary meeting of the TPE Forum will take place, to which all interested parties are invited. On the evening of the first day of the conference, participants can look forward to a guided tour of the historical stone corridors of the Franconian city and a joint dinner. The following article gives an outlook on the conference as well as the programme and introduces a new research project on short fibre-reinforced TPE, recently started by SKZ and TITK.
The year 2020 is a year of celebration in several respects for the IKV – Institute for Plastics Processing in Industry and Craft at RWTH Aachen University: The RWTH Aachen University celebrates its 150th anniversary, IKV will celebrate its 70th birthday and it will be the 30th time it stages the International Colloquium Plastics Technology. Furthermore, the IKV has received the approval to build a “Plastics Innovation Centre 4.0” (PIC 4.0) on the Campus Melaten, a completely interconnected research and development environment occupying a total area of more than 4,000 m2.
On 30 and 31 January 2020, members of the jury of the SPE Automotive Award met at the premises of Akro-Plastic in Niederzissen near Cologne, Germany, and discussed the further development of the prestigious SPE Automotive Award. The Central Europe division of the Society of Plastics Engineers announced that it intends to implement many of these ideas as early as in the 2021competition.
Turbulent times for bio-based polymers in 2019: PLA sold out despite expansion, as did PHA. Bio-based PP available for the first time, increased production of PBAT, PBS, bio-based PE, starch-containing polymer compounds and epoxy resins. Lower production is seen particularly in bio-based PET. At the same time, there is a lack of support from policy makers, who are taking bio-based and biodegradable plastics into collective punishment with fossil plastics in the Plastic Policy. These are some of the findings of the new market and trend report “Bio-based Building Blocks and Polymers – Global Capacities, Production and Trends 2019 – 2024” from the German nova-Institute. The report shows capacities and production data for all bio-based polymers in the year 2019 and a forecast for 2024. The market and trend report is written by the international biopolymer expert group headed by nova-Institute. The corresponding authors come from Asia, Europe and North America.
On 8 January 2020, the Italian plastics and rubber processing machinery and moulds manufacturers association Amaplast announced that it expects a negative year-end result for the Italian plastics and rubber processing machinery industry, citing foreign trade data published by the Italian National Statistical Institute (ISTAT) for January – September 2019. The statistics show a continuing slump in the two trade flows, down –13.1 % for imports (overall value of EUR 645 million) and –8.5 % for exports (just below EUR 2.16 billion) with respect to the first nine months of 2018.
One of the most prominent event victims of the Coronavirus was Chinaplas 2020. The major global event for the plastics and rubber industry was supposed to open its doors from 21 – 25 April 2020. Due to the outbreak of the Coronavrius the event is re-scheduled to 3 – 6 August 2020. The venue, the NECC in Hongqiao, Shanghai, remains the same.
Automotive accounts for about 45 % of global TPE consumption. Within the automotive sector, ownership patterns are shifting toward electric vehicles (EVs), autonomous vehicles (AVs), semi-autonomous vehicles (semi-AVs), and various forms of ride sharing have entered the market. These shifts have created new functional roles for automotive TPEs. The new opportunities will result from broader performance requirements, the need to bring smart functionality (smart TPEs), more versatile fabrication process technology and shortened/shifting supply chains.
This paper describes the effect of the oxidic filler particles barium titanate, titanium dioxide and zinc oxide on the dielectric properties of a commercial thermoplastic elastomer based on poly(styrene-block-ethylene/butylene-block-styrene) (SEBS) containing a high amount of plasticizer. The relative permittivities were determined in the frequency range between 20 Hz and 1 kHz by use of an alternating current testing bridge (LCR meter). A new method was developed to measure the relative permittivities at low frequencies in the range of 0.1 to 2 Hz. This method is based on the measurement of the normal force under action of an electrical field in an electro-rheological measuring cell. The increase of permittivities of SEBS composites due to the action of BaTiO3 and TiO2 are smaller than expected whereas ZnO caused a remarkable increase of permittivity that excels the predictions made by simple mixing rules.
At low frequencies, all composites and the unfilled SEBS exhibit a strong increase of permittivity that is caused by polarization at the interface. The relaxation of interfacial polarization at increasing frequencies can be described by Debye’s relaxation model for BaTiO3 and TiO2 composites and also for the unfilled SEBS matrix. On the contrary, the ZnO containing composites reveal also at higher
frequencies a frequency dependent behavior, which cannot be described by the simple Debye model. It is assumed that the very high specific surface area of the ZnO particles and the resulting high interfacial area between filler and polymer in comparison to the other composites cause the peculiar behavior of the ZnO composites.
Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) show a strong non-linear material behaviour in combination with a stress softening after initial loading and a high residual deformation after unloading. This material property depends on the stress state as well as on the temperature. In order to consider this characteristic during the design and development of TPE parts, suitable material models have to be developed. An isotropic and incompressible TPE was used to develop a visco-elasto-plastic material model based on generally known material models. The calibrated model was validated on a sealing ring in order to show the deficits of the generally known materials. Furthermore, the dependence of the material parameters on the stress state and temperature was investigated to develop an efficient test plan for the calibration of the material model.