Saturday, October 25, 2014

Nikon D750 with carbon-fiber reinforced thermoplastics

With features inspired by D4S and D810, the D750 brings dazzling image quality, cinematic video capabilities and pro-inspired handling in a nimble design with a tilting Vari-angle LCD and built-in Wi-Fi connectivity. Enthusiasts upgrading from a DX-format D-SLR will marvel at the D750's full-frame performance.

Pros seeking a primary or secondary camera for fast-paced shoots will appreciate the D750's familiar handling and speed. And filmmakers looking for a compact D-SLR to bring a production to life or to capture B-Roll will find the D750 a perfect fit. The D750 is a thrilling centerpiece of an exceptional imaging system. 

Another first for a Nikon full-frame D-SLR, the D750 employs a compact, lightweight and slim monocoque body design. The front body and front cover are constructed from carbon-fiber reinforced thermoplastics, while the rear and top covers are magnesium alloy, for a balanced combination of nimbleness and ruggedness. This slim styling and ergonomic layout allows for ample grip space and comfortable handling. And with its energy saving EXPEED 4, you can expect to keep shooting for up to 1,230 shots* and up to 55 minutes of recording time.


Friday, October 24, 2014

DuPont's Renewably-sourced Sorona® EP Polymer Finds Use in DTR's Cervical Biopsy Punch

DTR Medical, among the leading manufacturers of single-use surgical instruments, has specified Sorona® renewably sourced polymer for six components in its new Cervical Rotating Biopsy Punch. This grade is a 15-percent glass filled grade of Sorona® EP providing high strength and stiffness. Further attributes of Sorona® useful in this application include resistance to gamma sterilization and excellent dimensional stability.

The Cervical Rotating Biopsy Punch is used to take a tissue sample, on patients undergoing cervical cancer biopsies, for cell analysis by microscopy. The DuPont material, which is supplied with full regulatory compliance for use in healthcare applications and is produced according to Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) standards, is used in the handle and trigger mechanism to mold the rear hand left and right, front handle, connector pin, rotational controller and the rotational controller with chamfer. These parts are used to activate a spring, driving the inner rod which, assisted by the Sorona® inserts, generates a clamping force to cut the tissue sample.

The Cervical Biopsy Punch with Rotation from DTR Medical is designed for single-use, which eliminates cross contamination that occurs when re-using hard-to-clean instruments and saves considerable time and cost incurred by sterilizing the equipment for re-use.
According to Andrew Davidson, Managing Director at DTR Medical: "The surface finish of the handle is fundamental for instrument quality, replacing stainless steel and for good grip in the clinical setting. The part must deliver durable mechanical performance in use throughout the five year shelf life and the benefit of renewably sourced material is an added advantage for a single-use manufacturer. We tested many polymers for these components, and the DuPont material was superior."
Glen Wells, General Manager at St Davids Assemblies added: "Sorona® EP from DuPont combines the benefits of renewability with processing and performance advantages. The material can be processed similarly to PBT and PET, offers very low shrinkage and warpage, enhanced surface finish, and scratch resistance in finished parts." Sorona® contains 20% to 37% renewable material made with a renewably sourced propanediol (PDO) made from technical starch.
The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont™, The miracles of science™ and all product names denoted with ® are trademarks or registered trademarks of E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company or its affiliates.

Source: DuPont

Lehvoss Unveils High Performance LUVOCOM® 70 PK Compounds for Engineering Applications

Lehvoss North America announces the introduction of its LUVOCOM® 70 series of high performance compounds based on polyketone (PK). These compounds fill the gap between compounds based on technical polymers like PA6PA66, and acetal and high performance polymers such as polyphenylene sulfide (PPS), polyetherimide (PEI), and polyaryletherketone (PAEK). In having a combination of select features of these other polymers, the PK polymer offers an exceptional property profile with unique advantages for applications having multiple engineering requirements.

"The introduction is actually a re-launch," explained Michael Sandeen, Sales and Business Development Manager at Lehvoss, "Various LUVOCOM 70 products had been available until the year 2000 but had to be cancelled due to Shell Chemical's discontinuation of Carilon PK polymer production. With the polymer now available, Lehvoss decided to start the development of these new high performance compounds because of their unique and outstanding properties."
With its unique profile, PK polymer is a multi-use material that offers inherently good tribological performance. "In many cases it is better than acetal and polyamides (PA)," said Sandeen. "It can replace even high temperature resistant polymers in tribological applications." PK also offers good hydrolytic stability, low permeability, good weld line strength, and good processability with shorter cycle times compared to other technical polymers such as PA 66 and acetal.
"The polymer's low wear rate offers excellent advantages for gear wheels and bearings," said Sandeen. "Its low water absorption makes it suitable for applications where parts come in contact with moisture, and its high level of chemical resistance makes it suitable for applications such fuel filters and other fuel system components. Its chemical resistance together with its mechanical properties and tribological performance makes it particularly suited for stock shapes and seals."
The LUVOCOM 70 line consists of three grades: 70-9045 reinforced with carbon fibers; 70-9046 lubricated with PTFE, and 70-9113/BK formulated for low wear and friction. Lehvoss will also develop made-to-measure compounds based on customers' needs.

Source: Lehvoss

Monday, October 13, 2014

BASF's New Elastollan® AC 55D10 HPM TPU Finds Application in Citroën C4 Cactus' Airbumps

As a manufacturer of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), BASF has successfully optimized the material so that it can be applied extensively and unpainted on the vehicle exterior. The automotive manufacturer PSA Peugeot Citroën uses the new TPU grade Elastollan® AC 55D10 HPM (High Performance Material) for cladding the Citroën C4 Cactus with so-called Airbumps®. These are large air-filled cushion bumpers in contrasting colors: They are fitted on the sides as well as on the front and rear of the vehicle, protect the car exterior from impact and scratches and give the vehicle its distinctive look. This world first is the result of many years of development work between the French automotive manufacturer, the supplier Rehau, Switzerland and BASF. Rehau manufactures the side Airbumps®, while the company Faurecia, France produces the bumpers at the front and back.
"With their characteristic Elastollan® surface, Airbumps® embody the philosophy of the Citroën C4 Cactus perfectly — they have style and are multifunctional. Together with BASF and the suppliers of the Airbump® parts, we have shaped material development and the manufacturing process in such a way that the two have resulted in models offering the optimum combination of quality, aesthetics and costs", explains Jérôme Vinot Préfontaine, Purchasing General Manager for the C4 Cactus program at PSA Peugeot Citroën. The advantage of Elastollan® HPM lies in its freedom of design and long-term durability together with attractive haptics and a high-class appearance. The new material combines the properties of conventional TPU, such as good tensile strength and abrasion resistance, elasticity, excellent impact resistance at low temperatures and high media resistance, with new features: It has outstanding surface properties even at low wall thicknesses, it is scratch-resistant, UV- and weather-resistant, is easy to clean and has a high service temperature of 120 to 150°C.

Good assembly properties

This makes it an ideal surface for the impact-absorbing Airbumps® which give the C4 Cactus its characteristic graphic looks. The injection-molded Elastollan® component is mounted to a polycarbonate and acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) support shell, thus forming flexible cavities that can be dented and bounce back again. The entire structure is fixed to the metal chassis. Because of the good mounting properties of the HPM grade a tight assemblage is possible which conventional trim materials such as polypropylene do not achieve.
Elastollan® HPM can be pigmented, so the Airbumps® do not have to be painted. Thus, they do not require any special maintenance and in case of an accident help reduce the repair costs for the vehicle. The bumpers are available in four contrasting colors (black, brown, light and dark gray) and contribute to the harmonious individual color design with the automotive coatings, primers and clearcoats from BASF's Coatings Division.

Processing: short cycle time and good flow properties

BASF has also further developed the processing properties of the new Elastollan® grade. The material can be injection-molded within a wide process window with a cycle time that is 50% shorter compared with conventional TPU. It has excellent flow properties, which means that low wall thicknesses of 1.5 to 1.8 mm can be produced without affecting the surface quality. "Because of the high demands on surface and color, hardness and flexibility the close cooperation with BASF in material formulation and application development was a decisive factor for us", explains Bernard Delles, Project Head at the automotive supplier Rehau which manufactures the side Airbumps®. Faurecia uses the new Elastollan® HPM for manufacturing the bumpers at the front and back of the C4 Cactus. "The innovation lay not only in the material but also in the mounting. BASF has developed a plastic that required a new assembly technology. We worked closely to meet the requirements for the industrial mass production of these unusual parts", says Sébastien Bret, Development Manager at Faurecia.
Up to now, Elastollan® has been used in the automotive industry as cable sheathing, in the engine compartment and in the vehicle interior, e.g. for door handles, gear knobs and cupholder linings. BASF's TPU can be injection-molded, extruded or blow-molded.
Meet BASF at Fakuma 2014, Friedrichshafen, October 14-18, 2014, hall B4, booth 4306.
Airbump® is a registered trademark of PSA Peugeot Citroën.

Source: BASF

LANXESS Achieves Process Innovation in Production of Tepex Continuous FRT Composites

LANXESS has achieved a process innovation in the production of continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic Tepex composites. The subsidiary company Bond-Laminates, which manufactures these composites, is now able to continuously series-produce large semi-finished composite products in which the continuous fiber layers can be oriented at almost any conceivable angle. Until now, the continuous fibers in Tepex could only be lined up in the direction of production or perpendicular to it (0 degrees or 90 degrees). This process innovation means the designer can use the differently oriented composite continuous fibers to help him react more specifically to the force transmission in the target component. Even quasi-isotropic constructions can now be fashioned using Tepex. "This means Tepex can be used to design lighter-weight composite components that are tailored even more specifically to the load in question. So the new-generation Tepex strengthens our position as a leading supplier of thermoplastic high-performance composites for lightweight design," says Dr. Dirk Bonefeld, head of Research and Development at Bond-Laminates.

Suitable for large-scale series production with minimal waste

These multiaxial Tepex semi-finished products are fully impregnated and consolidated. Despite being formable to quite extreme angles, their impregnation means the fibers are unlikely to slip. As in the past, Bond-Laminates will consult closely with the customer regarding cutting the semi-finished products into pre-contoured profiles for forming and overmolding or compressing. Special nesting programs help keeps wastage to a minimum in almost all cases. "Thus the processor receives a fully constructed, made-to-measure composite material that can be shaped into highly load-resistant, complex components in very short cycle times without generating wastage," says Bonefeld.

Unidirectional properties

Thanks to the continuous fibers' high degree of orientation, the individual fiber layers demonstrate almost unidirectional properties. The stiffness and strength of the individual layers based on polyamide 6 and continuous glass fibers are 37 GPa and 780 MPa respectively in the direction of the fibers.

Broad spectrum of applications

Their high-quality mechanical set of properties, which can be tailored to meet specific requirements, makes multiaxial Tepex semi-finished products the perfect material for manufacturing high-strength structural components and semi-structural components for automobiles in particular. "For example, we are currently working on front end carriers, pedal and seating components, carriers for electrical and electronic modules, engine compartment guard plates, airbag housings and components used in underbody protection. We are also looking at components that require custom construction for meeting a combination of torsional and flexural load requirements," Bonefeld adds.


Friday, October 10, 2014

DSM's Dyneema® UHMWPE Fiber-based Fishing Trawls Improve Sustainability of Fishing Industry

Fishing Company Cornelis Vrolijk, based in IJmuiden, The Netherlands, and its subsidiary Jaczon, based in Scheveningen, The Netherlands, are specialized in pelagic fishing. The fishing trawls on board of their trawlers, which are used for catching pelagic (schooling) species, are traditionally made of nylon. Cornelis Vrolijk and Jaczon are now replacing their nylon trawls by trawls made from DSM's light and exceptionally strong UHMwPE (ultra high molecular weight polyethylene) fiber, branded as Dyneema®.
The use of this far thinner material in pelagic trawls offers immediate and tangible environmental advantages. The reduced resistance of the trawls in the water translates into a significant reduction in CO2 emissions, thus reducing the CO2 footprint of the pelagic fishing fleet. In this way Dyneema® makes a substantial contribution to improving the overall sustainability of the fishing industry.

The innovative trawls made from Dyneema® were developed by Maritiem BV in Katwijk, The Netherlands, in close consultation with DSM. Around 90% of the trawl material is Dyneema®. During both the design and use of the trawls, Maritiem worked closely with the relevant departments of both fishing companies and with the officers on board the vessels.
Dyneema® fiber is used in hand-spliced front sections of the trawls, from mesh size 800 mm and up. According to Maritiem some of these sections were previously made of knotted netting, but the knots were prone to slip. This does not happen with hand-spliced trawls. Dyneema® can be used for these sections. Dyneema® is also used for the selvedge lines and the frame ropes.

In order to allow for a proper comparisons, identical trawls made of predominantly conventional materials such as nylon, were also carried on board some of the vessels. This made it possible to compare the performance of the different materials used in trawls of an identical design. The fishing company's assessment of the new trawls was extremely positive.
Eric Roeleveld, Operations Manager of Jaczon says: "As a company specialized in pelagic trawling, we are profoundly aware of the environmental impact of our activities. One of our key drivers is to continuously look for increased sustainability in our fishing methods. We try to reduce our CO2 footprint wherever possible and support the FAO code of conduct for sustainable fisheries."
Cornelis Vrolijk and Jaczon now have eight of the trawls made with Dyneema® in use. The size and shape of the trawls depends on the targeted species, fishing area and the dimensions of the vessel.
The newly developed trawls offer a number of specific benefits in comparison to traditional nylon versions. The lighter material makes them easier to handle and therefore safer in use for the crew.

Feedback on the new fishing trawls has been favorable: "Positive results are coming in from all quarters." says Johan Müller, Cornelis Vrolijk's Fishing Fleet Manager, "We can also confirm a substantial reduction in fuel consumption and subsequent CO2 emissions."
As well as easier, safer use and savings on fuel, the development of lightweight fishing trawls has brought about a major improvement in sustainable fishing techniques. "This is good for the environment and good for the fishing industry." says Johan Müller. "We would definitely encourage other fishing companies to adopt this strategy and the use of this new material as well."
Dyneema® and Dyneema®, the world's strongest fiber™ are trademarks of DSM. Use of these trademarks is prohibited unless strictly authorized.
All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

Source: DSM

Braskem Provides Sugarcane Ethanol Derived Green PE-based Packaging for Organic Bread

Eureka! Organic Bread is introducing three bread varieties on the East Coast. The new flavors are certified Vegan and USDA Organic, and the renewable bag demonstrates the company's commitment to sustainability. Braskem and Bimbo packaging engineers have been working to produce bio-based packaging using Braskem's Green Polyethylene, which is produced from sugarcane ethanol, a 100 percent renewable raw material. The sugarcane used is non-GMO (genetically modified organisms) based. The bread packaging is made with 36 percent bio based material; verified using ASTM D6866, Eureka! Organic Bread bags are the first packaged bread in North America to use this renewable and sustainable technology.
For each ton of plastic produced, green plastic sequestrates approximately 2.15* tons of CO2 from the atmosphere. To help consumers recognize green plastic in stores, Braskem created a seal, which guarantees the renewable content of the plastic.

Braskem has been making Green Polyethylene since 2010 at its Triunfo Petrochemical Complex, in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, in the south region of Brazil. The plant's capacity is 200 kton/year and the total investment amounts to US$290 million.

Source: Braskem

Momentive's Lightweight CF Epoxy Door Structure Wins SPE's ACCE's 'People's Choice' Award

Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc. ("MSC") won the "People's Choice" Award for the "Most Innovative Composite Part" at the annual Society of Plastics Engineers Automotive Composites Conference & Exhibition (ACCE) last month in Novi, Michigan. The lightweight carbon fiber epoxy door structure submitted by MSC was singled out by vote of conference attendees.
Judging for the competition was based on the impact and trendsetting features of each application, including construction materials, processing methods, assembly methods, and other technologies that made the application possible. Design benefits, weight and cost reduction, parts consolidation, functional integration, and improved performance were also taken into consideration.

The winning component was a light-weight, carbon fiber epoxy door and window frame profile produced by Benteler-SGL for 2013 and later Porsche 911 GT3 Cup coupes. The composite was manufactured by high pressure resin transfer molding (HP-RTM) using MSC's EPIKOTETM 04695-1/EPIKURETM 05357 epoxy resin system, carbon fiber (Sigrafil® type C40 supplied by SGL Group) and polyester fiber. The component's Class A surface was finished in the body color.

Innovative features of this part include a simplified, integrated 2-piece design with a single structural inner piece incorporating the header, and a Class A outer panel. The door is a light-weight, trimmed body structure weighting 5.5 kg, compared to 15.0 kg for the standard series door. The raw body of the door weights 4.0 kg and the polycarbonate window and paint weight 1.5 kg. The inner and outer shells are manufactured via HP-RTM, and the outer shell is designed as a "micro-sandwich" to achieve the requisite buckling strength and performance at the minimum weight.
Design benefits of this MSC epoxy resin composite part are: a greater than 60% weight reduction, compared with metal; lower vehicle center of gravity; Class A appearance; and short cycle-time production. The HP-RTM process is set up in automated steps, accommodating build rates from low volume (500 pieces/year) to high volume (up to 100,000 pieces/year) with a fully automated process line.

Source: Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc.