Archive for December, 2001

Baxter: Advances toward PVC-free medical bags

Tuesday, December 25th, 2001

Baxter International Inc., one of the two largest medical bag makers in the United States, has made substantial progress on a replacement for PVC in its IV bags. The company has been showing PVC-free IV bags to a small group of shareholders who have been pressuring the company to move away from vinyl for environmental and health reasons.

AtoFina: Wider range of Metallocene Polyolefins

Monday, December 24th, 2001

AtoFina Petrochemicals has been broadening its portfolio of polyolefins based on its proprietary metallocene catalyst technology. There are now two commercial grades of a new family of Finacene metallocene MDPE (medium- density PE). They are being produced at the one of the world’s largest Phillips-type slurry-loop reactors, which has an annual capacity of 900 million lb/yr.
The first, launched in early 2001, is a blown-film grade, M 3410 EP (previously known as ER2245). It has a density of 0.934 g/cc and MI of 0.9. It is being marketed as a 20-30% blend component in LLDPE films. It reportedly offers good clarity (10% haze, 60 gloss rating at 45 degrees) and improvements in both physical properties and processability over other mPE resins in LLDPE films. When extruded by itself into 1-mil film on an LLDPE line, it shows 35% higher puncture strength and 60% higher tear strength than standard MDPE film, AtoFina says. It is also finding use as a 20-30% blend component for downgauging LDPE films and as a majority component (up to 90%) in overwrap.

The second Finacene grade, also of 0.934 g/cc and 0.9 MI, is a blow moldable MDPE, BM359 SG, that boasts gloss comparable to PP for packaging personal-care products, cosmetics, and detergents. Because
of its flexibility, it can be used by itself to make squeeze bottles, or it can be coextruded with a rigid HDPE. Besides high gloss, (60-90 rating at 45 degrees), it boasts high ESCR (>1000 hr), and high drop impact
strength. Marketing manager Allan Potter hints that an injection blow molding grade of metallocene MDPE is also under development.

Xaloy: Closing of Swiss factory

Monday, December 24th, 2001

Screw and barrel supplier Xaloy Inc. is closing down its plant near Zurich, Switzerland, and moving the work to its two other factories in the USA and Thailand. Xaloy said it will lay off 60 of the 73 employees at the factory in Rorbas by the end of March, but continue to handle service out of that location. Xaloy cites the worldwide decrease in demand for plastics machinery this year as reasons for the restructuring scheme.

EuroWindoor: CE symbol for construction profiles ?

Monday, December 24th, 2001

EuroWindoor, the umbrella group of European window and door profile associations, has adapted new, stricter product standards which have been submitted to the European Commission for approval and eventual adoption as an EU directive. This means profiles could have the EC safety symbol attached if the measures are approved. EuroWindoor general secretary Karl Heinz Herbert says a committee will review the quality standard changes during meetings in Brussels before end of the year. Adoption of the CE symbol, which indicates uniform quality and safety standards have been met in accordance to the EU’s building directive, should provide more customer confidence.

Pliant Corp.: New Cast Embossed Film Line

Thursday, December 20th, 2001

Pliant Corp., USA, has ordered a specialty cast embossed film line for one of its US plants. Built by Black Clawson Converting Machinery, the US$7.2 million system is scheduled to be shipped in May and will be in commercial production by August. It will produce film for medical and personal- care products. This is the second cast line installed in the Washington plant in two years. The first, a US$6.3 million project, went commercial this past May. Among the features of this custom-designed line are a touchscreen system that controls the entire production process, an automatic gauge- control system, and a camera detection system that identifies gels or holes in the film.

HW Plastics: Multi-million pound investment

Thursday, December 20th, 2001

HW Plastics, UK, has announced a multi-million pound investment in its manufacturing facilities at Macclesfield and Scunthorpe, together with a major restructuring of its operations. HW Plastics is the UK’s leading manufacturer of PVC Window Profiles and Cellular PVCUE Building Components. As a result of its programme, its Macclesfield site, already one of the largest extrusion operations in the UK, will be expanded and by the end of March 2003 will produce all the Company’s window profiles. The Gloucester factory will ultimately close. The Scunthorpe factory will become the headquarters of the company and the manufacturing centre for post extrusion operations such as foiling.

Spirex: Merger with Bimetalix

Wednesday, December 19th, 2001

Screw maker Spirex Corp. and Bimetalix Ltd., which produces bimetallic barrels, have merged. Bimetalix, based in Sullivan, Wis., has become a division of the Youngstown-based Spirex. The father-and-son owners of metalix, Forbes Hotchkiss and David Hotchkiss, will continue to manage day-to-day operations of the barrel business. Spirex, which makes screws, valves, and other plasticating components for extrusion, injection, and blow molding, now can design and build complete plasticating systems.

Crompton Vinyl Additives: Organic based heat stabilizers for rigid PVC

Tuesday, December 18th, 2001

With new environmental regulations set to limit the future use of traditional lead-based heat stabilizers for PVC, Crompton Vinyl Additives GmbH of Lampertheim in Germany has developed a range of organic-based heat stabilizers as alternatives for use in the fabrication of rigid PVC pipes and fittings. Here, the company explains to Plastics Additives & Compounding the properties and advantages offered by its OBS™ systems. Confident of substantial market growth for these products in the next few years, Crompton has installed a dedicated manufacturing plant for the new stabilizers at its Lampertheim site, which is due to start production by the end of November 2001. Caroline Edser reports.

Teijin: Production of specialty DSM film

Tuesday, December 18th, 2001

Teijin will build a new plant in Japan that will produce a high-porosity, ceramic-filled ultra-high-molecular weight polyethylene film developed by DSM’s Solutech division. The facility, scheduled for startup in 2004, will produce Solufill, an extremely thin UHMWPE film used as “ceramic green film” insulation in capacitors, at a rate of 50 million sq meters/yr. A single device can contain up to 600 of these layers, which are currently consumed at a rate of 100 million sq meters. Construction of the plant will begin in early 2002, according to the companies.

Barlo Plastics: Alternative for glass in roofing applications

Monday, December 17th, 2001

Barlo Plastics offers BARLO SPC, a product especially useful in a wide range of roofing applications. BARLO SPC is extruded from Polycarbonate resin, the material of choice for the roofing sector. BARLO SPC is a multi-wall sheet extruded from polycarbonate - a unique engineering thermoplastic resin which gives high levels of mechanical, thermal and optical properties which are essential in a wide range of roofing applications. In essence Multi-wall polycarbonate is virtually unbreakable, lighter in weight and offers much higher insulation values, making it a safe alternative to more traditional sheet products. BARLO SPC is also impact resistant and provides energy saving. It also features a protection system which provides resistance against degradation caused by UV radiation from sunlight. The key properties of BARLO SPC allow the product to be used as an alternative to glass, PVC, Acrylic or GRP in roofing and cladding applications. The 10-year guarantee for optical , mechanical properties and for hail resistance on products above 10mm and above, reinforce these values. The product is certified according to the SIA 280 standard for it’s hail resistance.