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The Taiwanese company LCY Chemical Corp. is announcing a new ultra-high molecular weight styrene-ethylene-butylene-styrene (SEBS) block copolymer for general TPE compounding, automotive, medical, polymer modification, and adhesive markets.

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Recticel and Covestro announced that the two companies are working closely together in developing solutions to make mattresses more sustainable and ready them for a circular economy. This includes the research of raw material technologies – from mattress production to end-of-life and beyond. At imm cologne 2020 furniture fair, Schlaraffia / Recticel Schlafkomfort GmbH will show such innovative and sustainable solutions at stands A010 and A011 in hall 5.2.

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Teknor Apex has developed a new series of Medalist medical-grade thermoplastic elastomer compounds for overmoulding exhibit strong adhesion to medical grade polycarbonate (PC) and PC alloys and include formulations with enhanced resistance to chemicals encountered in wearable applications.

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Safety for patient and user is an essential requirement for medical products, in-vitro diagnostics and pharmaceutical packaging. Subsequently, plastics grades used in medical have to fulfil particular requirements, i.e. constant properties, formulation lock or biocompatibility. Surprisingly, no standard has existed to define the requirements for medical grades so far. This gap has been filled recently by the new guideline VDI 2017 developed and launched by a work group of the German Engineer’s Society (VDI). This article addresses the development of the new guideline VDI 2017 “medical grade plastics” and presents the essential requirements to be covered by medical grade plastics (MGP).

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A collaboration between Dow, Nexus Elastomer Systems and German RepRap enables designers to 3D-print colored parts using Dow’s Silastic 3D 3335 liquid silicone rubber (LSR) and companion colour packs from Mesgo Iride Colors.

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According to the Kassel-based German company Hübner GmbH & Co. KG, if a fire occurs in a train or bus – whether as the result of overheating, a short circuit or some external influence – it often takes some time before passengers can be evacuated. Therefore, vehicles must be constructed in such a way that passengers and personnel are not exposed to poisonous smoke and fumes during this period and that first responders are also not endangered. To this end, the company has developed a new polyurethane-based material. In case of fire, it turns into a frothy foam, preventing the spread of smoke and flames.

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Modifications to the polymer chains by curatives, formed by sulfur and fragments of accelerators lead to polymer chain modifications in the elastomers. Emulsion styrene-butadiene rubber (E-SBR) samples, cured with tetramethylthiuram disulfide and sulfur (TMTD/S8), and zinc dialkyldithiophosphate with sulfur (ZDT/S8), were studied. They were characterized in detail in terms of crosslink density and crosslink structures.

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Perstorp announced the extension of its Ymer nonionic dispersing monomer product range for polyurethane dispersions (PUD). According to the company, in response to customer interest and in order to increase the formulation window, Perstorp is in the process of launching two new grades – Ymer N90, with a longer EO chain, and N180, with a shorter EO chain.

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Liquid silicone rubber (LSR) is mainly processed by liquid injection molding (LIM) because the material is particularly suitable for this purpose due to its low viscosity during processing. The density of the vulcanizate is about 1.1 g/cm3. With the aid of foamed silicones, density reductions of 0.5 g/cm3 to 1.0 g/cm3 can be achieved. This reduces the material requirement and consequently also the price. In addition, the insulation behavior against heat and cold as well as the floatability can be positively influenced. The floatability is decisive for separation processes in the recycling of materials. In this study, the positive effect of expandable thermoplastic microspheres as blowing agents in LSR will be illustrated.

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According to BASF, its expanded thermoplastic polyurethane (E-TPU) Infinergy created a real stir when it was launched on the market in the adidas Boost running shoe, because it introduced a completely new class of particle foams to the plastics market. Today, customers from a wide range of different industries use the material – from comfortable safety footwear and a dynamic tennis racket to a cushioning sports floor. At K 2019, the material was presented with a multitude of its applications and innovative approaches. Infinergy is used, for example, in the Vision Venture, a camper van from Hymer, as a step, bed edge and as a comfort element in the slatted frame.

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According to Covestro, the manufacture of a shoe requires a multitude of work steps, some of which are carried out by hand. This makes production time-consuming and expensive. In the finished product, various materials are sewn together and glued together, so that it is virtually impossible to recycle them by type at the end of their useful life.

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