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At Foam Expo North America from 13 – 15 July 2021 in Novi, MI, USA – stand 1903 – Rampf Group, Inc. is presenting its technology to upcycle polyurethane wastes generated by foam manufacturers and converting them to polyols utilising multifunctional plants for the upcycling process.

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According to Oerlikon Barmag, polyurethane has become an integral part of our everyday lives, e.g. in the construction industry or in automobile building, in sports and leisure or in manufacturing furniture, for insulating or for sound-proofing. Its applications are as diverse as the respective manufacturing processes are complex. At this year’s PU China – taking place in Shanghai from 28 – 30 July 2021 – the company will be exhibiting (Stand 225) its precision metering pumps with tailor-made solutions even for the most demanding tasks in the chemicals industry, increased productivity and durability.

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According to KraussMaffei, converting clean industrial waste or contaminated mixed waste from the “Green Dot” system into pure polymers or even complex recompounds – plastics recycling is a highly diverse and extremely challenging task. As an experienced machine manufacturer and material expert, KraussMaffei's extrusion division brings a great deal of expertise to the table – perfect prerequisites for sustained success in this important growth market. The company said its extrusion technology is an ideal choice for plasticising and degassing process steps as well as for repelletising and recompounding.

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In textile lamination, the new TPU is a good material for creating a breathable, waterproof layer for rugged performance apparel. (Source: Huntsman)

Huntsman has developed a new thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) grade for technical extrusion parts and blown film applications that is said to offer significant improvements over previous generation technologies when it comes to durability, production efficiency and reducing manufacturing waste. According to the company, Irogran A 85 P 4394 HR TPU is the latest addition to a well-established family of elastomer products from Huntsman, which are renowned for their performance in a diverse range of industrial and consumer applications.

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Danish researchers have developed a chemical recycling method for polyurethane (PU) targeted at handling end-of-life products. This new technology is considered an important new step towards a circular plastic economy for polyurethane. The method breaks down polyurethane into chemical building blocks that serve as feedstock for new PU products. Importantly, the chemical recycling process is robust and will, for the first time, be able to convert a wide variety of different PU materials, said the researchers.

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The German automotive supplier Fischer Automotive has opened a new factory in Jagodina, Serbia in June 2021. The new site increases the company`s production capacity in Europe. Fischer will use the new site for the production of ventilation nozzles for clients like Mercedes and BMW.

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The European diisocyanate and polyol producers association Isopa has updated the environmental performance data for polyols and diisocyantes (TDI/MDI) using the established and widely applied PlasticsEurope ‘Eco-Profiles’ methodology. The new data allows polyols and diisocyantes users to make up-to-date estimates of the environmental performance of their products as a part of the full life-cycle assessment (LCA). Isopa said the updated Eco-Profiles underline its strong commitment to encouraging environmental improvements in production and to support companies in producing sustainable polyurethane products.

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Texon announced that it has seen a significant uplift in interest in its paper-based Texon Vogue material over the last five years, which it attributes, in part, to the increasing number of people becoming vegan. According to the company, around the world a growing number of people are adopting plant-based diets. The United Nations estimated that in September 2020 there were around 78 million vegans worldwide. This increase is driving demand for vegan-friendly food, but also consumer goods including footwear and bags. According to The Vegan Society, the vegan leather market is set to overtake the animal leather market by 2025 and will be worth nearly USD 90 billion.

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Covestro and the Brazilian footwear manufacturer Calçados Beira Rio are jointly developing concept shoes with more sustainable material solutions. An elegant women's shoe and a comfortable casual shoe are used as examples to illustrate the variety of possibilities – from upper to lining, from sole to heel.

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Rampf Eco Solutions GmbH & Co. KG has been tasked to develop chemical solutions for the recycling of building materials in the EU backed project Iceberg. Using solvolysis, the company based in Pirmasens, Germany, is producing recycling polyols from post-consumer PU/PIR waste such as polymeric insulating foams.

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According to Freudenberg Sealing Technologies, the environmental demands placed on the hydraulic systems in large, heavy equipment can be extreme. Pressure, abrasive fluids, extreme temperatures and dirt can all impact the reliability and performance of the seals used to protect their mechanics. Fortunately for manufacturers producing construction, agricultural and mining machinery – among other, heavy-duty industrial applications – Freudenberg Sealing Technologies’ proprietary 94 AU30000 polyurethane provides an optimal solution – a fact that sealing distributors confirm through increasing sales of this material, said the company.

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