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TSRC has announced the introduction of Taipol 7126 and Taipol 7131 maleic anhydride-grafted SEBS. Adding these MA-SEBS as impact modifiers to the formulation of engineering plastics can help improve elasticity, toughness and compatibility with polar materials, and provide more comfortable and softer haptics.

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The specialist for closure and packaging technologies, Actega DS, is investing more than EUR 19 million to expand its research and manufacturing site in Bremen. The production and storage space will increase by 8,000 m², the manufacturing capacity will grow by 50 %, and the research and development capacities will triple. The implementation of the construction project started with a groundbreaking ceremony on 18 September 2018.

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On 24 October 2018 Teknor Apex celebrated the groundbreaking of its new plant in Rothenburg, Germany. From spring 2020, the new 15,000 m² plant will offer not only a considerable increase in capacity but also the extensive functionality of an R&D laboratory and an application technology centre and will act as a European technology centre for Teknor Apex. The current production facility in nearby Steinsfeld and the sales and marketing location in Tauberzell will be relocated to Rothenburg. The company currently employs 130 people in Germany.

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In a move to improve passenger comfort, legislation regarding odour, fogging and VOC/FOG emissions has increased in recent years, OEMs such as Daimler and VW have also tightened limits. Several countries regulate the maximum allowed concentration of substances which can be hazardous to health, such as formaldehyde, benzene and nitrosamines (for example the Chinese standard GB/T27630). Hexpol TPE supplies a portfolio of TPE materials optimised for automotive interior applications. Dryflex Interior is a series of compounds which are optimised for low emissions. They offer on average a 75 % emission reduction compared to other TPEs for interior applications on the market. They display low odour with results 2.0 to 3.0 in standards such as VDA 270. According to gravimetric fogging standard ISO 6452 they achieve condensate < 1.0 mg and achieve VOC results from 60 to 120 µg/g and Fog from 200 to 600 µg/g (tab.1).

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Soft TPS compound based on Kraton MD1648 SEBS polymer were recently developed for micro pellets used in rotational moulding applications. Kraton said that the use of this high flow SEBS polymer for industrial compound applications demonstrates that it is possible to obtain a stable, repeatable industrial micro pelletisation compounding process under commercial run rates for TPS micro pellets. The micro pellet technology is a proven alternative to cryogenic milled powder solutions. With the ongoing polymer and micro pelletisation technology development, smaller particle size distributions are achievable.

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PolyOne expands Pune site with TPE line and a technology centre (Source: PolyOne)

PolyOne announced the opening of a TPE production line at its facility in Pune, India. In addition, the company opened a technology centre that will house an advanced laboratory for new and existing R & D activities.

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The Nanoaugmented Materials Industry Summit (NAUM) 2018, which is being organised by OCSiAl in Shanghai, China, on 31 October 2018 will gather the world’s leading companies who use and apply graphene nanotubes to share exciting results. This year the event is opening its doors to all like-minded innovators and industry pioneers to learn about recent progress in this field. They will also be able to see a first-time-ever on-site demonstration of the production of nanoaugmented products with real industrial equipment.

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The former AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals has been relaunched under the new name Nouryon. The name borrows from one of its historic predecessors, the chemical company Noury & Van der Lande and follows the acquisition of the Specialty Chemicals business by The Carlyle Group in March 2018. The business includes among other products the organic peroxide initiators, organometallics and reactor additives for the production of thermoplastics and rubbers.

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According to Dunlop, modern day tennis players tend to play with more spin and as a result, hit the ball out of the top of the racket rather than the centre. The disadvantage of this is players swing with more force to generate more power and spin. This puts extra load on the player’s arm and can result in injury. The Dunlop research team observed this trend and employed an innovation to resolve this aspect – the Sonic Core made with BASF’s Infinergy expanded thermoplastic polyurethane.

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The footwear company Vivobarefoot has announced plans to bring a plant-based shoe range to the market. According to the company, the new Primus Bio range will use a plant-based thermoplastic polyurethane – a product based on industrial field corn – in its sole and upper and will be one of the lightest and most environmentally-sound shoe ranges available to-date. Vivobarefoot said the Primus Bio is its latest step in the quest to use 90 % sustainable materials across its entire product range by 2020.

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