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PVC Medical Compounds from Teknor Apex Now Span the Full Alternative-Plasticizer Range
Recognizing that interest in non-phthalate plasticizers is high among manufacturers of PVC medical devices, Teknor Apex Company has assembled a complete range of alternative plasticizers and incorporates them into compounds with equipment uncontaminated by previous processing of phthalates.
"Teknor Apex has redesigned its medical compound manufacturing facilities to ensure compliance with the stringent phthalate contamination specification of less than 1,000 parts per million now prevalent in most government and agency regulations," said Peter M. Galland, industry manager. "Our plants in the United States and Singapore are prepared to supply vinyl medical compounds spanning virtually the full range of plasticizer formulations, including phthalates and all important alternative types."
The table below briefly describes key alternative plasticizers. Galland noted that the Vinyl Division is well prepared to assist medical manufacturers in selecting the most appropriate plasticizer formulation for an application. Many of the plasticizers themselves are produced by the Chemicals Division of Teknor Apex.
Plasticizers Remarks
Adipates Eg., DEHA (DOA).
Close to phthalates in cost.
More water extractable than DEHP.
Less compatible with PVC, increasing risk of exudation and resulting in surface tackiness.
Citrates Derived from citric acid.
More water extractable than DEHP.
Efficiency most closely resembles that of DEHP.
Dibenzoates Little used as PVC plasticizers thus far.
More water extractable than DEHP.
DINCH
Di-isononyl-cyclohexane-1,2-dicarboxylate.
First introduced in Europe.
Viewed favorably on animal toxicity and solubility data.
DOTP Di-octyl terephthalate.
Classed as a non-phthalate.
Least costly alternative to DEHP.
Improved animal toxicity and less water solubility.
Metabolizes differently than DEHP.
In some uses, may exude, causing tackiness, unless properly formulated.
Trimellitates Eg., TOTM.
Most costly alternative in this list.
Less extractable in water than DEHP, other phthalates, citrates, adipates, and dibenzoates.
Could be more gel-prone.
Table 1: Alternatives to Phthalates Available in Medical-grade PVC Compounds
"Through no fault of the phthalate family of plasticizers for flexible PVC, market interest in replacing them is rapidly mounting in Europe and North America, particularly in the medical device sector," Galland said. "Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has continued to support the use of phthalates - including DEHP - in medical devices, mounting opposition from non-governmental organizations and now even the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has device manufacturers scrambling for alternatives. And in Europe, an EU directive requires that devices plasticized with DEHP be identified as such starting in March 2010."
DEHP is still the most widely used, least costly plasticizer in medical-grade PVC.
About Teknor Apex Company
Teknor Apex Company is a privately held company founded in 1924 and headquartered in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, USA. They manufacture for their eight divisions in 9 locations in the U.S., one in Singapore, one in the United Kingdom, and one in China.
Teknor Apex is a diversified material science company using complementary technologies to serve common markets. The following divisions have been the logical evolution of their growth: Vinyl, Thermoplastic Elastomer, Engineered Thermoplastics, Bioplastics, Teknor Color Company, Chemical, Specialty Compounding, and Consumer Products.
Source: Teknor Apex Company


CNT Leader Nanocyl Appoints NRC as Commercial Partner for the Automotive Industry in Germany
Nanocyl announced it has appointed NRC to be its commercial partner for NC 7000 multiwall carbon nanotubes and Plasticyl™ thermoplastic concentrates marketed to automakers in Germany. The appointment took effect at the start of this year.
In the agreement, NRC will serve as an extension of Nanocyl's business development team, supporting Dieter Nienhaus, Nanocyl's key account senior manager for Germany. "We are delighted to have NRC strengthening our sales team in Germany," said Francis Massin, Chief Executive Officer of Nanocyl. "NRC is well respected worldwide, especially in the automotive industry. NRC gives its customers quality products, personal service, and reliable advice."
"Nanocyl and NRC make a world-class team," said Gabriele Henke, Managing Director of NRC. "Nanocyl has the most conductive carbon nanotubes, and the best CNT technical assistance available for compounders and masterbatch producers."
About Nanocyl
Nanocyl S.A., established in 2002, is a leading global manufacturer of specialty and industrial carbon nanotubes. Nanocyl is headquartered in Belgium, and has a division in the U.S., and is opening Nanocyl Korea. The Asia-Pacific market is covered through a network of partners in South Korea, Japan, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and China. Nanocyl's products fully meet the requirements of clients active in producing synthetic materials and manufacturing equipment for the automotive and electronic industries. As a worldwide leader in the production of carbon nanotubes, Nanocyl is focused on providing complete and value-added solutions to its customers.
About NRC
NRC - Nordmann, Rassmann GmbH is a specialized distributor of a wide range of natural and chemical raw materials, additives and chemical specialities from all over the world. Acting as a global link between the chemical industry and its raw material processing customers, NRC is characterized by long-standing and trustful relationships with its partners. Founded in 1912, the company is held in high esteem by international raw material suppliers and customers alike for its innovative product portfolio, its competent advice on application technology, its high quality standards and individual services.
NRC and its subsidiaries represent globally active raw material producers in Germany, Austria, Central and Eastern Europe as well as Scandinavia, Switzerland and Portugal, supplying among others to the cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, food, construction, paper, lacquer, cleaning, environment, adhesives, plastics and rubber industries.
Source: Nanocyl


Commencement of New PVB Resin Production Line in Europe
Kuraray Co., Ltd has executed production capacity expansion of PVB (poly vinyl butyral) resin (Brand Name; MOWITAL) by constructing one new line at its European subsidiary, Kuraray Europe GmbH ("KEG"). KEG has finished trial operation, and just started commercial production. The total annual capacity of PVB resin at KEG has been increased by this latest expansion to 39,000 tons.


PVB resin is made from PVA (polyvinyl alcohol) resin which was industrialized for the first time in the world in 1950. PVB resin is a raw material for the production of "PVB Film (Brand Name; TROSIFOL)" which is used as interlayer for architectural glazing and laminated safety glass for automotive, respectively. Furthermore, the demand of TROSIFOL as encapsulant of solar cell modules is increasing. Among other applications PVB resin is used as a binder in paint, printing ink, and ceramics.
The Kuraray Group will further enhance its vinyl acetate and Poval-related businesses on a global basis, while reinforcing the consistent production flow from PVA resin to PVB resin and film.
About Kuraray
Kuraray was founded in 1926 for the purpose of commercializing synthetic rayon, which was cutting edge technology at the time. In 1950 during the post-World War II period, as Japan's first domestic producer of synthetic fiber based on original Japanese technologies, Kuraray became a world leader in the commercialization of PVA (poval) fiber under the KURALON brand, ushering in Japan's pioneering era in the chemical synthetic fiber industry.
Source: Kuraray Co., Ltd

BIOtech Products Gets Recognized for the Development of Biodegradant Polymer Additive
One of 10 products selected to receive the 2010 Environmental Stewardship Award from The Plastics Environmental Division of the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), is the path breaking new additive that turns polyvinyl chlorides into biodegradable polymers.
BIOtech Products, LLC is being recognized for the development of organometallic additives (BIOchem™) that make PVC and some other plastics biodegradable in biologically active landfills, while retaining or improving normal service life and processing of the plastic materials.
BIOflex, engineered using BIOchem™, has been the first truly environmentally friendly, biodegradable PVC, before which, PVC had been known to be immortal in the landfill & no degradation was found even after decades of landfill burial. BIOflex PVC is claimed to be landfill biodegradable under the conditions as simulated by ASTM D5526. Due to this breakthrough additive technology and also the huge market behind (PVC being one the main polymer used in the world), the BIOflex technology has been patented (filed in 2005 and granted in 2008). One of the current applications of such biodegradable PVC is outdoor PVC signage, made by Ultraflex Systems Inc. Environmental concern is influencing companies to take steps towards building a sustainable image, so it is not surprising to see leading companies like Disney requiring the use of BIOflex products in all their signs.

Standard PVC vinyl that has been in an accelerated landfill for 30 days
BIOflex PVC vinyl that has been in an accelerated landfill for 30 days

In order for any additive to work practically as a biodegradant on conventional non-biobased polymers (which are the bulk of all polymers consumed), the additive cannot allow degradation in the presence of oxygen and light because it would obviate the function of the conventional plastic product for any long term use. BIOchem™ works under anaerobic conditions by "micro-decomposition by micro-organisms" and not by "oxo-degradation or other similar process", thereby addressing the need to bring conventional thermoplastics into the realm of biodegradability with the caveat that the BIOchem™ containing product has to be disposed into controlled anaerobic landfill operations.
The additive works, although not completely understood, in part by inducing nano-hydrophilicity to a hydrophobic polymer thus providing a path for water so that anaerobic microbes can colonize the hydrocarbon given the controlled landfill conditions of darkness, no oxygen, anaerobic microbes, and high water content that stimulate the micro-organisms to secrete an enzyme that leads to chain scission, lowering molecular weight to the point of complete vulnerability to microorganisms. At this point the micro-organisms are able to metabolize the plastic further and produce valuable methane gas and soluble chloride fertilizer. The degradation is elemental and therefore the technology can also be viewed as sustainable.
Source: Ultraflex Systems Inc.

Nanocyl Promotes "Green" Advantages of High Performance CNT Technologies at Nano Tech 2010
Nanocyl is showcasing its new PLASTICYL PEEK 1001 thermoplastic concentrate, and its range of carbon nanotube technologies for composites at the ongoing Nano Tech 2010 (February 17-19) in Tokyo, Japan (Booth B-28).
"Carbon nanotubes can help OEMs meet their driving needs today - designing and producing new applications that perform brilliantly, save energy, and cost less," stated Roberto Mongiovi, Nanocyl's Sales and Marketing Manager-Electrical Conductivity.
PLASTICYL PEEK 1001, a ready-to-ship CNT, is developed for high-end electronics applications. Other high-temperature polymers, such as PEI and PES, are also available on demand. "Conductive plastic applications require a greater level of electrical conductivity, ESD protection and cleanliness," Mongiovi said. "Our new PLASTICYL PEEK 1001 master-batch is clean, cost-competitive, and eliminates the waste and inefficiencies of carbon black and carbon fibers."
PLASTICYL offers OEMs key advantages when used in advanced PEEK compounds, according to Michael Claes, Technical Service Associate Director. "PLASTICYL PEEK 1001 integrates carbon nanotubes uniformly in thermoplastic compounds," he said. "You can produce more durable products that have greater resistance to chemicals, abrasion and heat."
"These properties can help OEMs design and produce lighter-weight, non-metallic parts that are recyclable, and perform better throughout the supply chain," he added. "In doing so, you can reduce emissions, energy usage, and total costs." EPOCYL, SIZCYL and PREGCYL are Nanocyl's high-performance epoxy resins, sizing agents and pre-preg materials designed for improving the durability, reliability and conductivity of composite materials used in demanding automotive, sports, marine and aerospace applications.
"By improving the mechanical and ESD/electrical properties in composite materials, Nanocyl's CNTs help finished products have sustained performance, longer life spans, and lower maintenance and replacement costs," Claes said.
About Nanocyl
Nanocyl S.A., established in 2002, is a leading global manufacturer of specialty and industrial carbon nanotubes. Nanocyl is headquartered in Belgium, and has a division in the U.S. and is opening a subsidiary in Korea. The Asia-Pacific market is covered through a network of partners in South Korea, Japan, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwanand China. Nanocyl's products fully meet the requirements of clients active in producing synthetic materials and manufacturing equipment for the automotive and electronic industries. As a worldwide leader in the production of carbon nanotubes, Nanocyl is focused on providing complete and value-added solutions to its customers.
Source: Nanocyl


Ampacet's High-Efficiency Antioxidant Masterbatch Allows Higher Recycled Content in Polyolefin Films
Ampacet has introduced a high-efficiency antioxidant masterbatch that protects reprocessed or recycled polyolefins from degradation during processing, allowing blown and cast film processors to use more recycled content without detrimental effects on aesthetic or physical properties. The new masterbatch is particularly beneficial in applications like clear packaging films, where cost-savings initiatives are driving use of more recycle, but gels are not tolerated. The masterbatch is also effective in repelletizing operations, where it adds value by restoring thermo-oxidative stability, enabling recycled resins to perform more like virgin resin.
Film processors want to improve the sustainability of their products by replacing virgin resin with reprocessed or recycled resin. Processors are also running their lines faster and at higher temperatures. This combination of severe processing conditions and materials that are more prone to degradation can result in crosslinking and gels. Ampacet's high-efficiency antioxidant masterbatch solves this problem by boosting the thermo-oxidative stability of recycled material. Because the antioxidant protects against degradation, gel-formation, and yellowing, processors can downgauge and/or use higher recycle content while maintaining film properties.


Ampacet's high-efficiency antioxidant masterbatch is cost-effective and typically can be used at low let-down ratios of 0.5 to1%. For example, "In blown film processing of a clarity application, 0.5% of the masterbatch reduced gels and allowed re-use of edge trim and scrap of up to 10% without any detrimental effects on physical or optical properties," reports Shawn Lucas, development manager at Ampacet. He adds, "In another case, adding 1% of the masterbatch during repelletizing allowed a cast film processor to increase the addition of repelletized material from less than 5% to greater than 15% in a critical application."
The masterbatch is approved for food-contact applications.
About Ampacet
With 18 manufacturing sites located in 13 countries, Ampacet Corporation is a global masterbatch leader and offers the broadest range of custom color, special effect, black, white and specialty additive masterbatches for molding and a multitude of other processes and applications. Headquartered in Tarrytown, N.Y., Ampacet Corporation employs more than 1,500 people worldwide and operates technical and color development centers and manufacturing sites throughout the Americas, Asia and Europe.
Source: Ampacet Corporation


Evonik Introduces New Metathesis Catalysts
The Catalysts Business Line of Evonik Industries has expanded its portfolio of metathesis catalysts. It is offering its customers three new, efficient homogeneous catalysts that cover a broad spectrum of reactions in cross-metathesis, ring-closing metathesis, and ring-opening metathesis: catMETium® RF2, catMETium® RF3, and catMETium® RF4. In the chemical industry, metathesis is an important method for developing and producing, for example, high-tech plastics - including those based on renewable resources - or active ingredients for medicines and pesticides. Accordingly, the primary areas of application for the new catalysts are polymer chemistry and the pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. Ring-closing metathesis, for instance, is an indispensable reaction step in the synthesis of active ingredients for hepatitis C and cancer medications. Ring-opening cross-metathesis can be used to manufacture highly effective light-guiding polymer materials.
Evonik markets the new catalysts based on a proven, straightforward business model that requires no licensing agreements and ensures transparency. The total kilogram price for the catalysts already includes the licensing fees for the use of the intellectual property rights. The customer makes no additional commitments, and the name of the business model reflects its approach: The abbreviation "RF" stands for "royalty free." "This model allows the customer to use the new catalysts without limitations," says Dr. Jürgen Krauter, head of marketing in Evonik's Catalysts Business Line.
Evonik Industries is a leading supplier of catalytic system solutions. It offers an extensive range of catalysts from a single source, as well as a comprehensive service package for customers from the life sciences, fine chemicals, industrial chemicals, chemical intermediates, and polymers industries.
About Evonik
Evonik Industries is the creative industrial group from Germany which operates in three business areas: Chemicals, Energy and Real Estate. Evonik is a global leader in specialty chemicals, an expert in power generation from hard coal and renewable energies, and one of the largest private residential real estate companies in Germany. Our strengths are creativity, specialization, continuous self-renewal, and reliability. Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world. In its fiscal year 2008 about 41,000 employees generated sales of about €15.9 billion and an operating profit (EBITDA) of about €2.2 billion.
Disclaimer
In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment. Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.
Source: Evonik

Saluyot Joins Pineapple and Banana as Fiber Source
From delectable food to haute couture, saluyot, like pineapple and banana, can be a source of natural fiber for chic apparels. Researches have recognized the importance of banana leaf sheaths and pineapple leaves in producing cloth of exportable quality. Now comes saluyot stems.
The Philippine Textile Research Institute (PTRI) has developed new sets of earth-friendly yarns from polyester and stems of saluyot (Corchorus olitorius), being a rich source of natural fibers.
PTRI director, Dr. Carlos C. Tomboc, stressed the Institute's focus on studying non-traditional tropical fiber sources such as maguey (Agave cantala Roxb.), water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes), and saluyot in addition to abaca (Musa textiles Nee), anabo (Abroma augusta Linn), banana (Musa sapientum), kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.), pineapple (Ananas comosus Linn.), and ramie (Boehmeria nivea L.) which PTRI has studied. The Institute is pushing for the use of fiber-rich plants in textile production to support the local industry in reducing its import of synthetic-based fibers from other countries.
PTRI's research trials show that saluyot stems when soaked in water for 21 to 24 days could yield at least 5% fibers. Spinning the treated fibers with polyester produced 80/20, 70/30 and 60/40 polyester/saluyot with yarn counts of 25-29Ne, which when woven, can produce fine, smooth, and blemish-free fabrics ideal for manufacturing garments.
Blends of saluyot and polyester fabrics can also be made into home textiles such as curtains/drapes, beddings, table runners and linens as well as raw material for nets, ropes, and other farm gears. In some countries, saluyot fabric is used as geotextile to prevent soil erosion and landslides.
PTRI continues its research trials in spinning saluyot fiber with cotton to increase the all-natural fiber component in producing saluyot fabric or burlap. According to PTRI researchers, other tests will also be performed to determine the ability of the fabric to resist deformation and the textile surface to resist wear by friction and other standard procedures to assure the product's quality.
The United Nations (UN) General Assembly declared as the International Year of Natural Fibres and has chosen saluyot as one of the 15 of the world's major natural fibers. PTRI is one with the UN recognizing saluyot fiber's potential in apparel, home, industrial, and geotextile applications.
About The Philippine Textile Research Institute
PTRI is the lead agency of the Department of Science and Technology in textile research and development. The Institute is dedicated to transfering technologies and rendering technical services, promoting the use of indigenous resources, and developing technical competence in textile production and quality assurance.
Source: The Philippine Textile Research Institute

Successful Launch of Production Plant for New Mineral Co-stabiliser ACTILOX CAHC
The Additives business unit, a part of the Functional Fillers division, also including the Flame Retardants business unit of Nabaltec AG, a leading supplier of mineral-based flame retardants and raw materials for technical ceramics, has successfully launched its production plant for the new mineral co-stabiliser ACTILOX CAHC. The plant with a yearly capacity of 10,000 metric tons is located at the company's German manufacturing site in Schwandorf. Nabaltec also runs a joint venture plant for the production of fine precipitated aluminum hydroxides APYRAL® 40 CD and APYRAL® 50 CD in Corpus Christi (Texas, USA) and a pilot plant for functional fillers in Kelheim, Germany.
The new state of the art chemical plant for CAHC, which was commissioned in last quarter of 2009, is fully process controlled and waste water free. With an investment sum of 18 million Euros, the CAHC plant has been one of the largest single investments in the history of Nabaltec.
ACTILOX CAHC is a calcium aluminum hydrate carbonate. Product, process and application have been filed for patents. As a mineral acid scavenger it is a key component in heat stabilizers for polymers, specially in heavy metal free stabilizers used in PVC. The availability of ACTILOX CAHC in large scale enables the PVC industry to speed up the phase out of environmentally critical additives as it was initiated by "Vinyl 2010", the voluntary commitment of the European PVC industry for sustainability.
ACTILOX CAHC is the first commercialized product within the new mineral co-stabiliser series of business unit Additives. It can be delivered in polyethylene packaging, super sacks and bulk.
About Nabaltec AG
Nabaltec supplies specialized markets all over the world, with an export share that amounts to approximately 70%. They are leaders in their markets and their innovative force, which has won several awards, promotes progress. The company specializes in a number of functional fillers for the plastics industry and high-quality, specialized raw materials for technical ceramics, always featuring invariably high premium quality and designed for absolutely specific requirements.
Source: Nabaltec AG

Angstron Patents New Class of Superior Nano Graphene Supercapacitor Electrode Materials
Nanotek Instruments, parent company of Angstron Materials Inc., has been issued U.S. Patent 7,623,340 for its development of a new high-performing class of meso-porous nanocomposites. The new nanocomposite provides a superior supercapacitor electrode material for uses that include hybrid electric vehicles (EVs), transportation and energy storage. The technology is based on the company's breakthrough discovery of nano graphene platelets (NGPs). Angstron, the world leader in production of NGPs, will make the nanocomposite material.
The NGP-based nanocomposite exhibits high levels of capacitance and electrical conductivity as well as demonstrating chemical stability and low mass density. Both NGPs and NGP-based nanocomposites can be mass produced cost-effectively when compared to carbon nano-tubes and fibers. Supercapacitors containing this advanced material offer the potential to supplement a battery used in an electric car to provide bursts of power needed for rapid acceleration. Until now, this critical requirement has been the largest technical hurdle to making battery-powered cars commercially viable.
In addition, supercapacitors must also be able to store sufficient energy to provide an acceptable driving range. The new NGP-based material makes it possible for a supercapacitor to meet weight and cost targets while combining adequate energy and power with a long cycle life. Angstron will provide the meso-porous NGP nanocomposites in two forms: NGPs coated with a thin layer of conducting polymer or surface functional groups and NGPs bonded by a conductive binder, coating, or matrix material such as a polymeric carbon. The platelets in these products are comprised of a sheet of graphite plane or multiple sheets of graphite plane with a thickness less than 10 nm and an average length, width, or diameter smaller than 500 nm. The binder or matrix material bonded to the platelets to form the nanocomposite material create a surface area greater than 500 m2/gm.
Angstron Materials leads the industry as the only advanced materials company to offer large quantities of both pristine graphene and oxidized graphene. Multi-layer graphene, both pristine and oxidized versions, are collectively referred to as nano graphene platelets (NGPs). NGPs offer improved performance properties including very high Young's modulus, strength and surface area, superior thermal and electrical conductivity, lower density and less weight. NGPs are also resistant to gas permeation. As a result, Angstron is able to work with companies to develop products for batteries, fuel cells, supercapacitors, light weight structural components as well as electromagnetic interference (EMI), radio frequency interference (RFI), electrostatic discharge (ESD), lightning strike and other functional and structural composite applications. In addition to its ability to provide sample materials and scale-up, Angstron partners with customers to help manufacturers identify optimal designs, experience with research and development to help manufacturers harness the advantages of nano compositions and manufacturing processes.
Available in a wide range of geometries, NGP products are easily surface functionalizable for polymer and common solvent applications and offer high loading potential for nanocomposite applications. Angstron combines real world technology to make next generation products in the aerospace, automotive, energy, marine, construction, electronics, medical, and telecommunications markets.
Source: Angstron Materials Inc.

Bayer MaterialScience Opens World's Largest Carbon Nanotube Pilot Facility
Bayer MaterialScience has opened a new pilot facility for the manufacture of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) at CHEMPARK Leverkusen. The company has invested some EUR 22 million in the planning, development and construction of the facility, which is the largest of its kind in the world and has an annual capacity of 200 metric tons.

(L to R): Dr. Steffen Kühling, Dr. Joachim Wolff, Patrick Thomas, Dr. Tony Van Osselaer, Dr. Ernst Grigat, Dr. Hans-Wilhelm Engels

By investing in one of the key technologies of the future, Bayer MaterialScience is looking to gain a head start in supplying the demand for a whole host of applications for multi-wall carbon nanotubes, which the company is marketing under the trade name Baytubes®. "Current forecasts predict an annual growth rate of 25 percent for carbon nanotubes. Within ten years, the market is expected to be worth US$ 2 billion," says Dr. Joachim Wolff, a member of Bayer MaterialScience's Executive Committee and head of the Coatings, Adhesives, Specialties segment. "We are also expecting nanotechnology to create a total of 100,000 new jobs in the German industry in the medium term," he adds.
North Rhine-Westphalia is one of the world's leading nanotechnology locations. By opening the new facility, Bayer MaterialScience is once again demonstrating its commitment to Leverkusen and the industrial location of North Rhine-Westphalia. "This project is evidence of the strength of our site here in Leverkusen. We have an outstanding infrastructure, easy access to raw material and power supplies, sophisticated waste management technology and a highly qualified workforce, including specialists," says Dr. Steffen Kühling, head of Production and Technology in the Coatings, Adhesives, Specialties segment of Bayer MaterialScience.
Bayer MaterialScience is one of the few companies capable of manufacturing CNTs of a consistently high quality on an industrial scale. It has been operating a pilot facility with an annual capacity of 60 metric tons in Laufenburg in the German state of Baden-Württemberg since 2007. CNTs are manufactured from ethylene in a reactor at an elevated temperature using a catalytic process. "Under the right conditions, the next few years will see nanotechnology becoming a powerful branch of industry in Germany, offering attractive job prospects, innovative products and competitive solutions," states Kühling.
Baytubes® are a highly innovative modification of carbon. They can be added to polymer matrices or metal systems as a filler or modifier to improve their mechanical strength and impart electrical properties. Potential applications for Baytubes® include thermoplastic and thermoset systems and coatings. When used in coatings for ships, Baytubes® ensure very high abrasion resistance. At the same time they reduce the flow resistance between the ship's hull and the water, resulting in a significant reduction in fuel consumption. Further applications for carbon nanotubes include rotor blades for wind turbines, and sports equipment such as skis, hockey sticks and surfboards.
"Nanotechnology is a cross-sectional technology which can play a role in a variety of different industries and application areas. Its potential uses range from industrial production to energy supply and storage, from information technology to intelligent surfaces, and also to some areas of medicine, like diagnosis or therapy," explains Wolff. Bayer is also playing a pioneering role when it comes to the safe usage of Baytubes® carbon nanotubes, with a comprehensive product stewardship program that supports the safe handling of Baytubes® from production through processing to application and waste management.
About Bayer MaterialScience
With 2008 sales of EUR 9.7 billion, Bayer MaterialScience is among the world's largest polymer companies. Business activities are focused on the manufacture of high-tech polymer materials and the development of innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction and sports and leisure industries. Bayer MaterialScience has 30 production sites around the globe and employed approximately 15,100 people at the end of 2008. Bayer MaterialScience is a Bayer Group company.
Forward-Looking Statements
This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group or subgroup management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Bayer's public reports which are available on the Bayer website. The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.
Source: Bayer MaterialScience


PolyOne Presents Wire and Cable Solutions for Fire Protection at Railway Conference
PolyOne Corporation, a premier global provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions, is sponsoring and presenting at the upcoming Sixth Annual Fire Protection of Rolling Stock conference. This event will take place in London, March 24-25, 2010.
Maryline Desseix, PolyOne LSFOH product manager, will present a technical paper at the conference that explains how to develop safe flame retardant solutions for railway cables in rolling stock applications while complying with regulations and meeting railway operators' and manufacturers' specifications. Cables and accessories in the railway industry are used in a variety of infrastructure and rolling stock applications, and cover underground, railways, subways, trams and mass rapid transit propulsion equipment.
"Fire protection is of paramount importance in the railway industry," said Desseix. "The vulnerability factor for railcars is high because elevated tracks and tunnels can make evacuation during a fire difficult and dangerous. While it is important that materials be flame retardant to withstand ignition and limit flame propagation, it is equally important to address other factors including smoke generation, toxicity, dripping, and corrosivity."
Fire safety management for rolling stock is becoming an increasingly complex issue due to constant changes in technical and regulatory environments. In addition to these changes, the development of new technologies and systems means that fire protection approaches must be constantly reviewed. Desseix's presentation will highlight how PolyOne's latest solutions and developments can help the wire and cable industry increase fire safety for rolling stock applications.
About PolyOne
PolyOne Corporation, with 2008 annual revenues of $2.7 billion, is a premier provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions. Headquartered outside of Cleveland, Ohio USA, PolyOne has operations around the world.
Source: PolyOne

STAEDTLER Manufactures the Ecologically Efficient WOPEX Pencil using KRAIBURG TPE Compounds
The STAEDTLER Group is Europe's largest manufacturer of felt-tip pens, erasers, wooden pencils, fineline leads for mechanical pencils, modeling clay and industrial plastiline. When designing WOPEX, its latest product innovation, the firm turned to the thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) made by KRAIBURG TPE. Those compounds offer ideal bonding with the substrate in the STAEDTLER pencil and make for a solid grip with a pleasant touch. Over and above that, the highly transparent TPEs let STAEDTLER dye the material in any of a wide variety of shades - a real design advantage. This is also confirmed by prizes like the prestigious "Design Plus 2009" award, presented on the occasion of the "Ambiente" design fair in Frankfurt. Moreover, the KRAIBURG TPE compound is part of a sustainable production process. The basic material for WOPEX is a natural fiber laminate (or wood polymer material) containing seventy percent wood; the remainder comprises varying parts of plastics and additives. This make it possible to use the efficient co-extrusion process, offering lower energy costs and less waste than was the case in conventional pencil manufacture. The wood is used in its entirety. That is one of the reasons why this innovative pencil was recently also designated "Bio-Material of the Year 2009".


A part of eco-friendly WOPEX manufacture: TPE compounds from Waldkraiburg
The challenge faced by the WOPEX project team was to identify a compound that would bond with the wood polymer material. Holding true to the company's motto - "Custom-engineered TPE and more" - the specialists at KRAIBURG TPE worked in close cooperation with STAEDTLER to develop the ideal solution for the pencil's surface. The compounds ensure a comfortable, non-slip grip. The high degree of transparency makes it possible to add color in numerous variations, turning the TPEs used in WOPEX into an optical highlight in the metallic silver-blue finish.
The natural fiber laminate, joining the thermoplastic elastomers, makes for efficient manufacture in the co-extrusion process, entirely without solvents. The materials are plasticized at temperatures of from 130 to 180 degrees Celsius and are then fed to a specially engineered co-extrusion head. There the individual streams of resin are metered in the right quantities and delivered at the required relative positions. The advantages: Energy needs are trimmed and the number of steps in the process chain is reduced considerably when compared with conventional pencils. The wood used as the feedstock material is employed far more efficiently. In addition, that material consists exclusively of PEFC-certified wood (Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes) originating in German forests managed for sustainability. This increases the amount of wood utilized in each tree and reduces scrap, which can be as much as eighty percent when manufacturing conventional wooden pencils.
"We assign top priority to developing products that let our customers launch sustainable manufacturing and, in so doing, promote the welfare of people and the environment," says Oliver Zintner, European Business Director at KRAIBURG TPE. "That is why we are all the more pleased to be part of an ecologically advanced production process like the one used to manufacture WOPEX."
About KRAIBURG TPE
KRAIBURG TPE manufactures thermoplastic elastomers based on HSBC (hydrogenated styrene block copolymers) and markets them all around the world. In addition to custom solutions, the company offers under the THERMOLAST® brand name a broad spectrum of standardized compounds to cover a wide range of applications. With its high-performance HIPEX® compound, KRAIBURG TPE is opening up the world of rubber for all the companies that process thermoplastics. The TPE specialist has production sites in Germany, the USA and Malaysia. KRAIBURG TPE also maintains sales offices in the UK, France, Italy, Spain, China and India.
About STAEDTLER
STAEDTLER is one of the world's leading manufacturers of writing, colouring and drawing instruments. As one of the oldest industrial companies in Germany, STAEDTLER takes advantage of the great tradition of Nuremberg pencil-makers, centuries of experience and particular advances in research and development to manufacture innovative products of the highest brand quality.
Source: KRAIBURG TPE


 
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