World's most-conductive 3D-printing filament now shipping

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: April 2nd, 2015

Start-up Functionalize Inc. (Seattle, WA) announced today that it has beaten the promised electrical specification of F-Electric, its conductive 3D-printing filament, by 25% and has begun customer shipments. The final production material has a resistance of 0.75 Ω/cm and has greater mechanical strength than the beta material or virgin PLA. Described as the world's most conductive 3D-printing filament, F-Electric is the first plastic filament that enables 3D printing of circuit boards, flashlights, lighted wearables and more, according to the company.

EU plastics group warns about damaging effect of force majeure declarations

By Karen Laird
Published: April 2nd, 2015

According to a recent statement from the Brussels-based European Plastics Converters Association (EuPC), the recent series of force majeure declarations by some of the leading polymer suppliers to the European market could have very damaging effects.

"We are receiving reports from our major national associations that compounders and processors are experiencing difficulty in obtaining adequate supplies of polymer to discharge contractual obligations toward their customers," said Alexandre Dangis, EuPC's Managing Director.

Manufacturing slows, as PMI slips again

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: April 2nd, 2015

The Institute for Supply Management's March 2015 Manufacturing ISM Report on Business once again indicates slippage. While it remains on the expansion side of the 50 benchmark (below 50 shows a contraction while above 50 signals expansion), the Purchasing Management Index (PMI) dropped from 53.5% in January to 52.9% in February and now to 51.5% for March.

Binder offers alternative to formaldehyde in natural fiber composites

By Stephen Moore
Published: April 1st, 2015

A new binder for use in production of natural fiber composites for automotive lightweight applications was recently introduced by BASF (Ludwigshafen, Germany). Acrodur Power 2750 is designed for the production of components such as interior car door panels or shelves.

Proto Labs puts medtech manufacturers on the fast track

By Norbert Sparrow
Published: April 1st, 2015

It's good to be Proto Labs (Maple Plain, MN). The $200 million rapid injection molding and machining company continues to record stellar financial results, with 25% year-on-year growth. Although it serves an array of industries, medical device manufacturing represents a sizable chunk of the business. PlasticsToday met with recently appointed President and CEO Victoria Holt at NPE2015 in Orlando, FL, last week, where the company had a booth. 

Tekmart serves fast-paced manufacturing segments with injection molding machine trading facility

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: April 1st, 2015

Tekmart International Inc., headquartered in Toronto, ON, Canada, and with contract manufacturing in Juarez, Mexico, announced that it has opened an injection molding machine trading facility. With global sales approaching 100 presses and auxiliary equipment, the growth of this business segment has led Tekmart to open its 100,000-square-foot equipment service and trading facility in Juarez dedicated to injection molding and plastics process machinery. This expansion has also allowed Tekmart to add 40,000 square feet of surface mount technology (SMT) equipment.

Verstraete provides new look for Philadelphia Brazil

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: April 1st, 2015

Global label developer and manufacturer Verstraete IML (Maldegem, Belgium) is known for its innovations in labels for in-mold labeling applications. When Mondelez Brazil introduced a redesigned package for its Philadelphia cream cheese, it chose a rounded design to eliminate sharp corners and make it easier for consumers to spoon out the product more easily. It also reinforces the brand's visual identity, because retailers can now stack the product more efficiently on store shelves.

FDA and the Goldilocks principle

By Norbert Sparrow
Published: April 1st, 2015

The perennial debate about the appropriateness of FDA's regulation of medical devices had an airing in the Wall Street Journal recently. Reporter Thomas Burton brought together a former FDA deputy commissioner, cardiology professor and device attorney to hash it out. While the back and forth is fairly predictable, a few comments were made that bear repeating.

Thermoforming industry seeing big demand as it captures larger share of plastics applications

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: March 31st, 2015

Thermoforming has moved rapidly from the more primitive methods of 30 years ago to a high-technology form of processing that is giving injection molding a run for its money. The makers of thermoforming equipment all concurred in comments to PlasticsToday that thermoforming processors want reduced cycle times, which translate into high productivity and better quality parts.

Teleflex Medical OEM expands balloon catheter portfolio

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: March 31st, 2015

Teleflex Medical OEM (Gurnee, IL), a supplier of custom-engineered catheters, has added balloon catheter manufacturing technologies to its portfolio of in-house capabilities. New product offerings include non-compliant, semi-compliant and compliant medical balloons for a variety of peripheral, coronary and neurovascular applications. The business specializes in components for PTCA (percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty) and PTA (percutaneous transluminal angioplasty) procedures.

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