The Invention of Plastic Materials From Parkesine to Polyester

Posted by Katie Gerard on 07.28.2015

Can you imagine life without plastic? Since World War II, plastic materials have slowly become a common element in our daily lives.  Many of the most familiar plastics are less than 100 years old.  Let’s take a look at the timeline of development for specific plastic materials.

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4 Essential Techniques for Bonding Plastic Components

Posted by Guest on 07.21.2015

There are four essential techniques for joining plastic components.  Each method is associated with equipment, labor and other costs that you most consider.  Let’s take a look at each method in more detail.

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Why Self-Healing Concrete Could Save Your Summer

Posted by Katie Gerard on 07.14.2015

Summer is here and I’m sure all you drivers are already encountering the joys of summer roadside construction projects.  There’s nothing like hanging out in traffic on a sweltering day, waiting to get to work, or scheduling your weekend away around traffic predictions.  But what if it didn’t have to be like that?

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The Many Uses of Plastic Materials in Medicine

Posted by Barbara Gerard on 07.06.2015

Modern healthcare would not be possible without the use of plastic materials. From the casing of an open MRI machine to the smallest tubing, plastics have made health care simpler and less painful.  Things we take for granted such as disposable syringes, intravenous blood bags and heart valves are now made of plastic.  Plastics have reduced the weight of eyeglass frames and lenses.  They are key components of modern prosthetic devices offering greater flexibility, comfort and mobility.  Plastics allow artificial hip and knees to provide smooth working, trouble free joints.  Plastic packaging, with its exceptional barrier properties, light weight, low cost, durability, and transparency, is ideal for medical applications.  Today’s most innovative medical procedures are dependent on plastics.

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Polymerization: How Plastic Materials are Made

Posted by Barbara Gerard on 06.25.2015

Plastic materials have been created using many different kinds of matter over the years. Originally, resins were made from vegetable matter including cellulose from cotton, furfural from oat hulls, oil from seeds and various starch derivatives.  Bakelite (phenol formaldehyde resin), one of the first plastics made from synthetic components, was developed by Belgian born chemist Leo Baekeland in New York in 1907. Bakelite is made through an elimination reaction of phenol with formaldehyde. It was used for its electrical non-conductivity and heat-resistant properties in electrical insulators, radio and telephone casings. Because of its pleasing appearance, it was also used to make consumer products such as jewelry. Today, however, most plastics are made from petrochemicals including natural gas.

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How It Works: Blow Molding

Posted by Barbara Gerard on 06.17.2015

Blow molding is a manufacturing process in which air is used to inflate soft plastic into a mold cavity. It is a two part manufacturing process.  First a parison or starting tube of molten plastic is made and then the tube is inflated into the desired shape.  The parison is made either by extrusion or injection molding. The parison is placed in a mold cavity and inflated to take the shape of the mold.  Blow molding is used to make hollow plastic containers such as bottles, jars and containers. Milk containers, shampoo and soda bottles, and watering cans are examples of products that are typically blow molded. 

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6 Benefits of Plastic Components in the Medical Industry

Posted by Guest on 06.11.2015

Healthcare providers are always looking for new and innovative ways to enhance the quality of care patients receive while cutting costs.  Re-usable and antimicrobial plastic components are helping medical practitioners overcome adaptive challenges in the healthcare industry. These plastics are advantageous for a variety of reasons, including the benefits listed below.

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The Effect of Cryogenic Temperatures on Plastic Materials

Posted by Katie Gerard on 06.04.2015

Cryogenics is the study of the production and behavior of materials at very low temperatures.  An environment is considered cryogenic if it exhibits temperatures below -150°C.  Many modern industries use cryogenics in a wide variety of applications.  Some of these applications include cryogenic fuels, spacecraft hardware, machinery for medical and biosciences applications including freezers and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), particle accelerators, and superconducting magnets.  Curbell Plastics® recently published a white paper by Dr. Keith Hechtel on the effect of cryogenic temperatures on some common high performance plastics.  This article will briefly summarize some of the white paper’s main points.

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4 Reasons Why Flexible Materials Are Improving Product Packaging

Posted by Guest on 05.27.2015

There’s a massive shift going on right now in the world of product packaging, as more and more packaging converters are moving away from standard rigid materials such as paperboard and molded plastic and into flexible materials such as bags and pouches.

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Can 3D Printing Overtake Traditional Manufacturing Processes?

Posted by Chris Sculnick & Katie Gerard on 05.19.2015

3D printing has been generating a lot of excitement in the last year but the technology’s future in industrial manufacturing is still unclear.  With technology advancing, the 3d printing industry grown quickly and can now print many different types of materials.  Yet, 3D printing has not replaced traditional subtractive machining or injection molding.  Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why.

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