TPE Magazine international

Fridays for Future … or ... No Future with free Fridays?!

No, here comes not another Greta Thunberg bashing. The teenager from Sweden certainly has earned as much merits for the climate debate as Abba for the pop music or Ikea for the lifestyle. But please allow me to express my deepest astonishment about the fact that bunking off school is being declared a legal protest tool and that adults (including many politicians) have nothing better to do than to make this scandalous behaviour socially acceptable by giving it a loud round of solidary applause?

What is actually happening here? A teenager makes a theatrical appeal to his peers to save the world by staying away from school on a certain day of the week. The word “school bunk off” is gladly avoided in most reports, often there is the rather euphemistic expression of “school strike” used. Thousands of saturated urban kids respond to the call and carelessly skip their Friday lessons. In doing so, they irresponsibly mistreat one of the great achievements of our society, namely free access to education and knowledge.

Let us not forget that education is a privilege that cannot be taken for granted. In many parts of the world, children are in enormous danger on their way to school. Remember Malala Yousafzai, the young Nobel Prize laureate who has been campaigning for the right of girls to education in Pakistan since she was eleven years old and who was attacked and seriously injured by the Taliban while sitting in a school bus.

Can somebody explain to me why the Fridays-for-Future kids do not demonstrate for the climate on Saturdays, very effectively and clearly visible in the overcrowded consumer hotspots of our cities? Because maybe they can’t think of a handy alliteration in combination with Saturday? Joking aside ... of course, to quote Mark Twain, there are more important things in life than school. But a good education, especially in natural sciences, is indispensable to develop all the new technologies that are urgently needed for a clean and climate-friendly future. Of course, young people on the streets learn a lot about democracy and opinion-formation. But this and good will alone are not sufficient to develop climate-friendly new energy resources or complex new material or mobility concepts. This requires many well-trained young people who are prepared to face up to these challenges, and of course, also correspondingly coordinated and attractive education opportunities.

Stephanie Waschbüsch


Hexpol TPE launches TPE series with recycled content

Hexpol TPE presence at K 2019 ran under the banner “Soft / Safe / Sustainable”. Among the highlights was the launch of Dryflex Circular, a family of TPE with recycled content.


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Special: additive manufacturing

  • The Freeformer and soft materials – Arburg at Formnext 2019 with new technologies and focus
    on medical applications
  • From an OEM perspective – Additive manufacturing of thermoplastic multicomponent parts at P&G devices
  • Soft and flexible, tough and strong – Huntsman enters additive manufacturing by introducing
    Iroprint AM resins, powders and filaments
  • Lubrizol: Collaboration with Ultimaker
  • Materialise: First to offer BASF TPU for HP Multi Jet Fusion
  • Soft and flexible in 3D printing – Bavaria-Filaments company introduction
  • Covestro: Made-to-measure shoes
  • Wanhua: Materials for additive manufacturing of shoes
  • Evonik: Copolyester in black and white for powder-based 3D printing technologies
  • BASF: Customised 3D printing for RV and trailer market
  • Eos: TPU for serial 3D printing


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Realignment at Albis Plastic – More efficiency and flexibility through separation of distribution and compounding businesses

The Hamburg-based distributor and compounder Albis Plastic has announced plans for a significant internal restructuring. The company said in a statement issued on 17 October 2019 that by mid-2020, its Distribution and Compounding businesses will be transferred to formally separated companies with their own growth and profit responsibility under the umbrella of a holding company. At K 2019 in Düsseldorf Philip O. Krahn, CEO of Albis, spoke with TPE Magazine about the reasons for this decision.


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New forms of customization – Injection molding tools set the stage for TPE components

Many of the objects we use in daily life only appear similar at first glance. In the truest sense of the word, the differences only become tangible when handling them. Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) not only guarantee a pleasant touch, but also support the functionality of the product. With the Zahoransky injection molding tools, a wide range of these products can be manufactured in a flexible, economical manner with process security – even if they have a multi-component construction. The one-stop solution concept covers the process from the granulate to the fully packaged and palletized goods.


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Tecnogi acquires majority of Sipol

Tecnogi S.p.A., former minority shareholder and founding partner of Sipol S.p.A., has completed the extraordinary acquisition of the majority of Sipol’s share capital. Since long time, both companies were cooperating in the footwear market, exploiting various synergies in terms of both technological know-how and global positioning. Thanks to this acquisition, Tecnogi accomplishes the strategical target to grow its own business, extending it also to other industrial sectors like biodegradable polymers, techno-polymers, automotive, packaging and textile, strengthening, in this last business segment, the historical partnership with Cepat AG, a Swiss company based in Chur and owner of the Cepatex brand (copolyesters, copolyamides and polyester elastomers).


Electromobility report 2019 – Sales trends in core markets

The “Electromobility Report” of the Center of Automotive Management (CAM) analyses e-mobility market and sales trends of automotive manufacturers on a regularly basis. Main focus are the core markets of China, USA, and the European Union. Different market ramp-up scenarios for 2025/2030 are designed considering key-influencing factors like charging infrastructures, regulations, products and the electromobility strategies of OEM. Some findings of the new “Electromobility Report 2019” are presented below.


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The current and future market for thermoplastic elastomers in automotive applications

The global market for thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) in automotive applications is with few exceptions, growing faster than any other elastomer. It is estimated to be 1.97 million t in 2019. This is forecast to rise to 2.86 million t by 2024, with a compound average growth rate (CAGR) of 6.6 % over the period 2019 to 2024. This CAGR is slightly above the 6.2 % GAGR for the total global thermoplastic elastomers’ market. The following article will have a closer look at the reasons of growth.


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Investigation of the bond strength between injection moulded TPU and a reactive, castable polyurethane mass – Applications, processing and determination of bond strengths

Polyurethanes are one of the most versatile material groups within the plastics processing industry. Their fields of application can be found in a large number of technical and everyday products. A special niche application, which has been available on the market for a long time, is two-component plastic screens, which combine thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU) with reactive and castable polyurethane compounds (2C-PU system). The TPU screen inserts have the function of classifying and dewatering the sieved material, while the PU mass serves as composite and carrier material. Compared to other soft plastics from the thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) segment, polyurethanes have a particularly high resistance to abrasive media in the recycling, natural stone, chemical and wood processing industries, which is why they are primarily used in plastic screens. In order to quantify the bond between these two soft components (TPU/PU), this paper shows the development of a manufacturing and testing system, since there is no suitable test guideline available for a soft-soft 2C bond.


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Antimicrobial thermoplastic elastomers – Strategic pathways for the future of broad-spectrum anti-infective materials

As the need for next-generation self-sterilizing materials escalates to combat the growing global threat of various microbes, especially those that exhibit drug resistance or the capability thereof, new material design paradigms must be developed to promote antimicrobial measures without sacrificing environmental integrity. In this work, the antimicrobial properties of two chemically different systems of thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) are examined. Two strategies are considered: antimicrobial photodynamic inactivation (aPDI) and antimicrobial anionic inactivation (aAI). It is demonstrated that both strategies are effective in most cases after reasonably quick exposure times. 


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