Automotive

Polyamide plant targets auto applications

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: July 2nd, 2014

Lanxess (Cologne) has taken its new plant for polyamide (PA) plastics in Antwerp, Belgium, into operation as planned. The 90,000 tonnes/year will primarily serve the automotive industry.

Problems with automotives have roots in the OEMs

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: July 2nd, 2014

What a difference a few millimeters make. Lately, we've heard GM apologizing for the tragic deaths and injuries of GM vehicle owners over an ignition switch problem that caused the vehicles to shut down - and air bags failing to deploy - on 2.6 million vehicles. GM CEO Mary Barra announced the firing of some high-level executives and engineers including Ray DiGiorgio, the switch engineer who'd designed the new switch but failed to put a new part number on it, and Gary Altman, a development engineer.

Thumbs up! 3D-printed finger cots support the assembly process at BMW

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: July 1st, 2014

Occupational health and safety has been further enhanced on the assembly floor at BMW through  the use of customized flexible finger cots fabrication from thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) using 3D printing.

Manufactured in-house at BMW and customized to the shape of individual worker's fingers, the orthotic device is worn over the thumb to provide protection against excessive strains on the thumb joints when carrying out assembly processes such as insertion of rubber plugs into bodywork.

Clariant announces 50 percent capacity increase for innovative Licocene performance polymers

By Karen Laird
Published: June 30th, 2014

As customers around the globe wax lyrical about Clariant's Licocene performance polymers, the company has announced that it is increasing production capacity by 50 percent at its facility on the Frankfurt-Höchst Industrial Park in Germany. The facility is currently designed to produce 20,000 metric tons of Licocene per year in a continuous closed cycle. The debottlenecking of Clariant's existing production line represents a low double-digit million Swiss Franc investment. The additional capacity is scheduled to come on stream in Q1 2016.

Bayer MaterialScience shutters Darmstadt site

By Karen Laird
Published: June 30th, 2014

As part of the worldwide consolidation of its business with sheets made of the high-performance plastic polycarbonate, Bayer MaterialScience has decided to close its site in Darmstadt, Germany, responsible for overall sales and for the production of Makrolon Multi. European customers will be supplied in the future by the plants in Nera Montoro, Italy, and Tielt, Belgium. The closure in Darmstadt affects 90 employees. The company says it will do everything possible to ensure that this step is conducted in a socially responsible manner.

Mexico and the U.S. favored for next major automotive plant expansions

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: June 30th, 2014

Three vehicle manufacturers recently announced a new plant and a major plant expansion in North America. On June 26, the Renault-Nissan Alliance and Daimler announced jointly that their companies have agree to establish a 50-50 joint venture, the business entity that will oversee construction and operation of the new plant in Aguascalientes in North-Central Mexico. The new plant will be built in the immediate vicinity of an already existing Nissan plant and will have an annual capacity of 300,000 vehicles when fully ramped up.

Evonik: More PA 12 capacity, new production processes alleviate supply fears

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: June 29th, 2014

Evonik Industries has expanded its polyamide (PA) 12 production capacity at Marl Chemical Site by 5,000 tonnes/year, thereby increasing the supply security of its Vestamid high performance polymer material.

Thirty years of success attributed to good customer relations

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: June 27th, 2014

From three molding machines and three employees to 47 machines and 130 employees across two locations in 30 years is quite a success story in today's injection molding business. To listen to founder and president of Technical Precision Plastics (TPP), Jim Piermarini, tell the story of his company's growth, it sounded so simple. "Customer service," he said when asked by PlasticsToday to reveal the secret of his success.

Braskem to build new ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene plant

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: June 27th, 2014

Braskem, the largest thermoplastics resins producer in the Americas, announces its plans for the construction of an ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) plant at its site in La Porte, TX.

Braskem's UHMWPE products are produced under the trade name UTEC. Groundbreaking of the new plant in La Porte will start during the third quarter of 2014. Construction is expected to last approximately 18 months with a targeted completion date during the first half of 2016. The U.S. plant's output will complement the existing UTEC product line that is produced in Brazil.

All-plastic liftgate 30% lighter than steel counterpart

By Stephen Moore
Published: June 25th, 2014

Magna International Inc. (Aurora, ON) has taken the wraps off what it says is the first all-thermoplastic liftgate for a North American produced vehicle. Magna's Exteriors unit is producing the fully recyclable liftgate for the 2014 Nissan Rogue crossover.

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