Materials

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.

Ineos to acquire BASF’s share in Styrolution

By Karen Laird
Published: June 30th, 2014

Styrolution, the global market leader in styrenics, is to become a wholly owned, standalone company within Ineos. Ineos will acquire BASF's 50% share in the company, which was founded in October 2011 as a 50-50 joint venture between the two global chemical giants.

Actega introduces medical-grade TPE free of animal-derived components

By Norbert Sparrow
Published: June 30th, 2014

Actega (Bremen, Germany) has announced the introduction of a medical-grade thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) that is entirely free of animal-derived components (ADCs). The ADC-free formula for the ProvaMed TPE family of materials is described by the company as a practical solution for customers in the pharmaceutical and medical sectors that must account for the origin of additives and other material components. The material also satisfies kosher and vegan-free requirements.

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.

Medical polymers market expected to exceed $17 billion by 2020

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: June 27th, 2014

Driven by the continued substitution of metals and glass in medical applications and growing demand from emerging economies, the medical polymers market is expected to reach a global value of $17.05 billion by 2020, according to a new study by Grand View Research Inc. (San Francisco, CA). Increased demand from an aging population for minimally invasive procedures, which typically rely on single-use polymer-based devices, is also driving this trend, according to the market research and consulting firm.

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.

World-first textile application for Kraig Biocraft's spider silk; medical and industrial uses on horizon

By Norbert Sparrow
Published: June 26th, 2014

Five times stronger than steel and three times tougher than Kevlar, by weight, spider silk has galvanized the imaginations of researchers for many years. However, producing or harvesting spider silk protein in a viable way has proven challenging, although a handful of smaller companies are appearing to make a go of it. One of them is Kraig Biocraft Laboratories (Lansing, MI), which announced earlier this month that Warwick Mills (New Ipswich, NH) will use its genetically engineered spider silk to produce textiles for the first time.

Open source 3D printing means freedom to improve technology

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: June 26th, 2014

Aleph Objects believes in open source 3D printing. In fact, the company was born to build open source and its philosophy of "Libre Hardware" is built into everything the company creates. "We exist for the freedom of our users and the benefits that brings," said Harris Kenny, communications manager for Aleph Objects, a Loveland, CO-based maker of the LulzBot 3D desktop printer.

Clariant: Sustainable long-term value creation is based on innovation and growth

By Karen Laird
Published: June 26th, 2014

Frankfurt, Germany — 'Discover Innovation' was the theme of Clariant's Media Day event held on June 25-26 at the company's brand spanking new Innovation Center in Frankfurt. The new CIC features a light, open workplace design to foster contact and communication while providing state-of-the-art chemical research laboratory facilities for the approximately 500 employees who work here.

From beer to bone regeneration

By Norbert Sparrow
Published: June 25th, 2014

So, Homer Simpson was on to something when he opined that beer was the cause—and solution—to all of life's problems. Researchers in Madrid have developed materials made from beer-brewing residue that can be used as scaffolds for bone regeneration. It turns out that bagasse, a waste byproduct of the brewing process, is chockfull of phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, and silica, which are the main chemical components found in bone.

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