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An ‘enormous' push to find PFAS replacements in manufacturingSteve TolokenLiz Harriman from the Toxics Use Reduction Institute, left, Bianca Hydutsky of Chemours and Jay West of the American Chemistry Council take part in an Oct. 18 panel at an SPE conference on PFAS,As scrutiny of fluorinated PFAS compounds increases, plastics companies using them as aids in manufacturing or as additives like flame retardants say pressure is rapidly growing to phase them out."I'd say in the last six months there's been an enormous change," said Mike Goode, chief commercial officer for FRX Polymers Inc., a Chelmsford, Mass., maker of flame retardants, addressing a recent industry conference. "They're all looking at replacing it … and that's because certain really well-known brand owners are asking for it."Goode, whose company makes non-PFAS replacement products, named electronics maker Apple, e-commerce giant Amazon and energy management firm Schneider Electric, although he said Schneider may be more exploratory than the others.Goode and others at an Oct. 18-19 Society of Plastics Engineers conference, Per- And Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in the Plastics Industry, cautioned that the scientific and performance questions are complex, with drop-in replacements sometimes hard to find.But scrutiny is growing, including in the packaging market."I don't know how many brands are here [at the conference] but the few that I know, that I've worked with, they have already made up their minds for packaging — they told us to change," said Roberto Nunez, director of market development at Baerlocher USA, a unit of the German additive maker. "They told that to film companies, to suppliers. You have no choice. The only question is how or what cost."Nunez gave a presentation at the conference on PFAS-free polymer processing aids that Baerlocher had developed, where he also discussed market trends.Fluorinated PPAs are used in manufacturing of blown film, wire and cable, and pipe to help molten polymers flow quickly against metal dies and molds, and they perform well, he said."The bottom line is these fluoropolymers, for these applications for packaging, perform wonderfully," Nunez said. "It's not easy to replace them. We have to have the performance."NunezEvaluating replacementsThe conference, held over two days in Baltimore, included speakers from the Environmental Protection Agency discussing EPA's far-reaching regulatory agenda around PFAS, such as proposing new standards for drinking water and regulations limiting PFAS discharges from chemical and plastics plants.The 2022 federal infrastructure law included $10 billion for grants for drinking water cleanup. As well, earlier this year, DuPont, Chemours, Corteva and 3M agreed to pay more than $11 billion to settle water contamination lawsuits.PFAS chemicals are widely used in consumer products, including as nonstick coatings on pots and pans and to make stain- or water-resistant additives for carpets and clothing, as well as in firefighting foams and as manufacturing aids and flame retardants.The conference sessions were peppered with questions about evaluating the performance and cost of PFAS replacements in manufacturing operations, but it also included a warning about societal costs, from an academic center working on PFAS alternatives."We're also spending billions and billions of dollars trying to clean up water supplies, and that doesn't even begin to clean up the soil," said Liz Harriman, deputy director of the Toxics Use Reduction Institute at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. "Every single day we add more fluorinated compounds to our environment, to our drinking water, to our built environment, and so we want to slow and eventually stop that kind of contribution."There are places today where fluorinated chemicals are needed, speakers said, pointing to their key role in making products vital to national competitiveness and green technologies, including in computer chips and in batteries for electric vehicles."We're seeing people right now looking at where to invest," said Bianca Hydutsky, global technology director for advanced performance materials for Chemours. "If the U.S. wants to have less dependence on foreign chips or materials for the EV industry, we need to understand how to do that."Still, Harriman urged the industry to work on nonfluorinated replacement chemicals in key industries, like finding polyvinylidene fluoride alternatives in batteries."There's a lot of talent, not just in this room but in the whole plastics supply chain," Hydutsky said. "I would be willing to bet we could come up with ways of producing energy storage that doesn't necessarily need PVDF, that we could come up with clean energy systems that don't need fluorinated refrigerants. It's not going to happen overnight."As well, speakers from the American Chemistry Council and companies argued that regulators should distinguish between much-needed fluoropolymers, which are inert and don't break down, and the PFAS compounds like PFOA and PFOS that have been targeted for strict drinking water and environmental limits.GoodeRegrettable substitutionsGoode, from FRX Polymers, said the companies they sell products to are worried about the potential health impacts of replacements."This phrase we've heard a lot of times: regrettable substitution. They're all so scared of making that mistake," Goode said, noting that some chemicals that could be replacement flame retardants have drawn questions from European regulators about whether they're endocrine disrupters.A speaker from medical device maker Boston Scientific appealed to the plastics engineering community to work with them on finding fluoropolymer replacements, even if that could be very difficult in some cases."From an alternatives perspective, there is no silver bullet; we can't just pick another polymer and throw it in there," said Gene Storbeck, a process development engineer who discussed the company's use of fluoropolymers in catheter tubing and devices for use inside the body.Still, he said Boston Scientific wants to find alternatives: "We want to challenge the fluoropolymer status quo," he said.With all the push for replacements among processing aids, Nunez told the conference it's an opportunity for an image-challenged plastics industry to help address public concerns over use of PFAS, or forever chemicals."Just to be clear, I love plastic, and not just because I'm a chemist but because of the value it brings to society, but we're in trouble," he said, adding that he thought finding more sustainable replacements could be an opportunity for the industry."I think it's also important for the image of the plastics industry to be able to say, in this circumstance, we can do it," Nunez said.* source : https://www.plasticsnews.com/news/enormous-push-find-pfas-replacements-manufacturing
editor 2023-11-05
Thailand’s GDP is expected to grow by 3.9% in 2023, according to the World Bank’s latest forecast, supported by stronger consumption, a recovery in the tourism sector, and strong pent-up demand following China's reopening. The World Bank projects economic growth of 3.6% in 2024.Export is an influential driver of Thailand’s growth. The forecast of the Thai National Shippers’ Council shows that the country’s exports may drop by 5-6% in the first half of the year before picking up in the second, but are expected to increase slightly by 1% in 2023.  The council also predicted that, benefiting from the Chinese economy and low base effect, the exports would improve in some sectors, such as electronics, automotive and agriculture.Although the global demand for Thai products has been affected by the trade tensions between major economies, the weak baht has helped boost the competitiveness of Thai exporters in some markets, the council added.Auto exports surged 43% in AprilThailand’s automotive industry has seen a remarkable recovery, thanks to the post-pandemic economic recovery, further improved semiconductor supply, and previous year’s low base. It is expected to continue growing in the coming months. The Thai automotive industry switched its primary focus to export market and since 2007, sales to overseas markets have steadily increased.According to the latest data from the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI), Thailand exported 79,940 finished cars in April, up 43.53% from the same month last year. The export value reached 50.16 billion baht, representing an increase of 49.83% year-on-year. Exports in the first four months increased 18.3% year-on-year.On the other hand, the domestic market remained slow, as auto sales dropped 6.14% YoY to 59,530 units in April, following an 8.37% decline in March. It was because of the tighter credit conditions for pickup truck buyers, as well as the ongoing pandemic impacts that has dampened consumer spending, according to the FTI.Other potential risks for the Thai automotive industry include rising cost of raw materials, fluctuation of exchange rates, and the uncertainties in the post-pandemic era.Poised to become EV production base in ASEANIn line with the global trend, the Thai government is accelerating the development of the EV industry under its ‘30@30’ policy in order to promote Thailand as an EV production base for the ASEAN region.The National EV Policy Committee published the ‘30@30’ policy in May, 2021. The policy aims to ensure that at least 30% of new vehicles will be zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) – battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) – by 2030.To support this, the government cut the annual road tax for new EVs, and it is encouraging public and private sectors to expand access to EV charging stations. Data from The Electric Vehicle Association of Thailand (EVAT) show that there were 1,239 charging stations in the Thailand in December, 2022.In addition, import duties on fully assembled BEVs have been cut to 40% for carmakers participating in the government’s BEV promotion scheme.Demand for sustainable packaging would increaseAccording to a report of Mordor Intelligence, the Thai packaging market has consistently grown over the past 10 years and is anticipated to register a CAGR of 8.65% over 2022 to 2027. The country’s economic expansion has led to a steady rise in both the production and consumption of packaging goods throughout time.The report says the consumption of non-recyclable plastic packaging is on the rise in Thailand. As a result, the demand for environmentally friendly packaging materials, such as paper and board, rPET, and bioplastic, would increase.Besides, the growth of the e-commerce and delivery industries has led to an increase in demand for packaging, not least flexible packaging. The TPBI, Thailand's leading packaging company, claimed that the company's sales of plastic bags and e-commerce packaging have increased since March 2020.The PE market in the country is expanding as a result of this tendency, and the demand for PE resin for packaging is expected to soar throughout the next years.The Thailand Plastics Industry Association (TPIA) also remarks that there is a growing market for plastic packaging in Thailand. Notably, the market growth is driven by the food and beverage industry that generates one-fourth of the country’s GDP.Due to expanding economy and evolving lifestyles, frozen food is now experiencing a rise in demand in Thailand, which in turn supports the growing demand for durable high sealing performance packaging.Potential medical sector for foreign investorsThe Ministry of Public Health’s 2016–2025 Strategic Plan reaffirms the position of the medical sector as a top priority for investment and growth in Thailand. Favorable regulations and incentives from the government and the Thailand Board of Investment (BOI) also play a key role in attracting international medical and healthcare enterprises to invest.With a well-established infrastructure already in place, Thailand has developed into a medical center for the ASEAN region. In Thailand, there are more than 1,000 governmental hospitals and 300 private hospitals. Government spending on healthcare has quickly increased, from less than 50% in 1995 to almost 80% recently.It is noteworthy that Thailand’s aging population will increase the demand for medical services in the next years. The proportion of people over 60 in the country is one of the highest in the ASEAN region. Additionally, Thailand is a medical tourism hub in Asia, with a rapidly rising number of foreign patientsChina tops Thailand’s FDIChina has become the leading source of foreign direct investment (FDI) in Thailand, especially in the high-tech industries including EVs, smart electronics, and medical devices.According to the Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand (IEAT), China accounted for 23.68% of the total FDI of 14.76 billion baht in Thai industrial estates in February, followed by Singapore (12.41%), Japan (11.65%), and India (6.39%).China’s investment in Thailand has increased sharply under China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The cooperation agreements signed between the two countries at the APEC 2022 further boosted Chinese investment in Thailand under the BRI and Thailand 4.0 policy.The IEAT expects more Chinese factories to be built in Thailand this year, as China lifted its travel restrictions and the IEAT offered incentives for target industries, reports Thailand Business News.Thailand 4.0 is an economic model that aims to unlock the country from several economic challenges. One of its main objectives is to create a value-based economy that is driven by innovation, technology and creativity. Environmental protection is also a key focus, looking to adopt an economic system capable of adjusting to climate change and low carbon society.source : https://www.adsalecprj.com/web/news/article_details?id=62415&lang=1edit : handler
Editor 2023-07-12
Continental prepared for future of ADASAUBURN HILLS, Mich.—For Continental A.G., advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) are nothing new.The company, whose autonomous mobility segment is based largely at its research and development center in Auburn Hills, has been working on ADAS systems since 1996.In more recent years, the focus has been on a full-stack system supplier solution, according to Vinh Tran, Conti's head of business area autonomous mobility for North America.Full stack includes three pillars—the system and the software; the ecosystem; and the component business, he said."What we try to do with a full-stack solution is to really make a scalable architecture."Continental aims to have those full stack solutions in each level of ADAS, one through five, from entry-level awareness systems to fully autonomous driving, Tran said.The focus now is on supporting functions such as lane-departure warnings, traffic-sign recognition, blind-spot detection—features that drivers know are there and working. When drivers are aware of ADAS systems, "they can slowly learn to accept the system," Tran said.As those systems evolve into more autonomous driving, drivers already will be accustomed to trusting ADAS, which will help them trust their vehicle to navigate during difficult situations, he said."It's a combination of trust as well as acceptance," Tran said.Drivers need to learn to trust systems like radar and Lidar, he said, as well as they trust their own eyes.Market leaderContinental has numerous systems and software functions on the market and is a market leader to many original equipment manufacturers, Tran said.The company's portfolio includes technology that uses radar and cameras including lane-departure systems, blind-spot detection, traffic-sign assists, rear cross traffic—a feature that uses short-range radar to determine if something or someone is near the vehicle and could create a collision—as well as traffic-jam assist, which uses cameras and radar to help ensure safety in a traffic-jam situation, he said.It's been a growing area for the company. Conti has been able to adapt its technology to changes."The architecture is getting more and more complex. And with that, also the components and the system and the software as well," Tran said.The company's autonomous mobility segment is headquartered in Auburn Hills, but the business also has teams in Mexico and Santa Barbara, Calif., the latter focused on developing Lidar systems through a partnership with technology company AEye Inc.Last year, Continental budgeted approximately $110 million for plant in New Braunfels, Texas, focused on ADAS components. The plant, which is expected to begin production later this year, will first focus on short-range radar products and eventually on camera products, Tran said.The focus on ADAS also ties into Conti's Vision Zero strategy—a future with zero fatalities, zero crashes and zero injuries on the road."In the end, our strategy in North America has been to be able to provide this solution to help create the autonomous mobility space," which will in turn reduce crashes, Tran said."It's a great vision and I think we're headed toward that. I think the market, and the entire market, is working towards that. As the technology evolves and evolves, I think that opportunity is increasing every day."source : https://www.plasticsnews.com/automotive/continental-prepared-future-adasedit : handler
Editor 2022-07-22
'Switch has been flipped' on global EV growth, forecast saysBCG anticipates 59% of all new vehicles sold worldwide will be BEVs by 2035.Battery-electric vehicles will account for a majority of new light-vehicle sales worldwide by 2035 as government mandates begin and automakers roll out new models, according to a forecast by Boston Consulting Group.BCG anticipates 59 percent of all new vehicles sold worldwide will be BEVs by 2035, a double-digit upward revision from its estimate in 2021, which called for a 45 percent market share. Likewise, the consulting firm anticipates BEVs will make up 20 percent of worldwide sales in 2025, up from last year's forecast of 11 percent."We really think the switch has been flipped," said Aakash Arora, managing director and partner at BCG. "It used to be a few years ago that for many companies, both OEMs and suppliers, EVs were a very important piece of their strategy but still just a project. Now, we're seeing that EVs are the company and that ICE is the project."BCG's report released June 9 said BEVs are likely to benefit in the coming years because of a significant shift away from internal combustion engine vehicles as well as a "lower uptake" of mild-hybrid vehicles across the globe.By 2035, gasoline-powered internal combustion vehicles and those that run on diesel are expected to account for just 10 percent of global vehicle sales, compared with 85 percent in 2021, according to the report. The share of mild hybrids in the global marketplace is expected to grow from 3 percent last year to about 19 percent in 2025 before flattening out.BEVs, meanwhile, are projected to grow from a 6 percent share in 2021 to 20 percent in 2025, 39 percent in 2030 and 59 percent in 2035.The European Union is expected to lead the world in BEV uptake, driven by strict environmental regulations that come into effect over the next several years. BCG expects 93 percent of all new-vehicle sales in the region to be BEVs by 2035, compared with 9 percent in 2021.While the U.S. is expected to lag behind the EU, the country's BEV share should grow quickly, the report said, and be roughly in line with China's growth. About 68 percent of new-vehicle sales in the U.S. are expected to be BEVs by 2035, up from 3 percent in 2021.Arora said the U.S. is benefiting from a "fundamental shift" in the regulatory environment under the Biden administration, which has raised climate targets and set a goal of having half of all new-vehicle sales in the country be zero-emission by 2030."The U.S. is now very committed to electrification in terms of the emissions targets and what we see in funding coming in," Arora said.But significant challenges face the industry and government as both push to electrify, what BCG calls "the sting in the tail of this rosy outlook."Supply chain constraints, geopolitical uncertainty and increased demand have pushed prices for lithium, nickel and other raw materials needed for battery production up significantly over the last two years, leading to higher battery costs.BCG said the solution is for producers to build new facilities to meet demand, though that will "not be easy" given long lead times on such projects."As long as supply gaps persist, they could hamper the buildout of additional battery production capacity, hinder efforts to improve the battery range and lifespan of technologies, and delay — or even reverse — the declines in EV ownership costs," BCG wrote.Likewise, nations must quickly ramp up the development of charging networks if they hope to meet targets. For example, BCG said the U.S. will need 1.1 million public charging sites by 2025 and 2.3 million by 2030, compared with 100,000 that were available in 2020.While the Biden administration plans to spend $5 billion over the next five years on EV charging, the White House has said it is targeting 500,000 public charging stations nationwide by 2025, well short of BCG's estimated need. And the federal funding put toward EV charging by last year's infrastructure bill is likely to pay for less than one-tenth of those charging points, BCG said.Still, Arora said he was optimistic the auto industry and other key players would find a way to address such issues."Now that everybody is pointing in the same direction, we'll be working through these challenges," he said. "I'm not dismissing the importance or significance of them, but we think this will lead to a new kind of innovation on charging and battery types and in mining. And it's going to drive change in regulation."source : https://www.plasticsnews.com/news/switch-has-been-flipped-global-ev-growth-forecast-saysedit : handler
Editor 2022-06-24
Orders for German plastics and rubber machinery plummeted 27 percent in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the prior year while overall sales were up 3 percent.   High demand from the packaging and medical sectors fueled demand in 2021 so the drop was somewhat of a base effect.   However, other factors have made it difficult for machine and equipment builders to process the orders and convert them to sales, according to officials of the mechanical engineering industry association, Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbau (VDMA), which is based in Frankfurt, Germany.   "First and foremost, there is the poor availability of materials," VDMA Plastics & Rubber Machinery Managing Director Thorsten Kühmann said in a news release.   The war in Ukraine and China's strict zero-COVID policy also have contributed to logistics problems and greater uncertainty in the market, which are having a negative effect on business.   As a result, the trade association is scaling back its original forecast that projected growth of 5-10 percent, saying it's no longer realistic for 2022.   "Due to the ongoing developments on the procurement market, we only expect a sideways movement or, in the best case, a slight increase in turnover for 2022 — despite full order books. We expect a development of zero to 2 percent," Kühmann said of the new outlook.   With more than 200 members, VDMA is the largest organization for mechanical engineering in Germany and Europe, particularly Austria, Switzerland, and France.   VDMA says German member companies represent sales of about 7 billion euros in core machinery and 10 billion euros including peripheral technology.   Every fourth plastics machine manufactured worldwide comes from Germany in terms of value, according to VDMA.   Meanwhile, the Italian machinery sector released results last week from the latest member survey that shows a 14 percent growth in production for the year 2021, with value exceeding pre-pandemic levels.   For the first quarter of 2022, Amaplast reported a 28 percent year-over-year increase in demand, particularly in overseas markets.   Amaplast's outlook for the second quarter also shows optimism with incoming orders expected to grow by another 6-7 percent.   However, Amaplast officials also said it was difficult to forecast for the coming months as there are many factors that may influence the performance of the industry. They pointed to the war in Ukraine limited manufacturing supplies and leading to higher energy costs as well as the COVID-related closures in China, including the port of Shanghai.   "Companies thus find themselves operating in an exceedingly complicated and also paradoxical situation. In spite of the above issues, orders continue to accumulate and it may become complicated for many companies to fulfill them," Amaplast said in a news release.
관리자 2022-06-13
Kickstart: With EV sales increasing, batteries becoming a bigger questionWith EV sales increasing, batteries becoming a bigger questionWith electric vehicle sales picking up — EV sales were up 60 percent for the first quarter of 2022 and made up a record 4.6 percent of all U.S. sales — the auto industry and environmental groups are taking a harder look at what to do with the batteries in those cars once they reach the end of their life.Recycling for traditional batteries can be a mess. Polypropylene from cases have been relatively easy to recycle and turn back into new battery casings, but the lead and other chemicals in those battery have proven far more challenging. (The Tampa Bay Times won a Pulitzer Prize this week for its coverage of the health hazards related to lead battery recycling.)Lithium-ion batteries pose a different kind of challenge, because the chemistry for them includes valuable materials like lithium that are important to recover and use again. The plastics used in separator film and structural frames tend to get less attention related to recycling, although Singapore-based Ace Green Recycling Inc. said earlier this week it will build a plant in Texas to reclaim 15 million pounds of plastics each year from lead and lithium-ion batteries.The Alliance for Automotive Innovation on May 11 introduced what it termed a framework to "support and sustain a domestic circular economy for EV batteries, create manufacturing jobs, boost U.S. energy security and reduce reliance on critical mineral imports."Investments in EV batteries are expected to hit $515 billion by the end of this decade, our sister paper Automotive News writes.An appropriate material for a grand openingAny company can have a ribbon-cutting ceremony. When pipe maker Uponor North America marked the opening of its $5.5 million, 25,000-square-foot expansion in Hutchinson, Minn., it had a pipe-cutting ceremony.The expansion will support the growth of Uponor's cross-linked polyethylene pipe manufacturing. Apple Valley, Minn.-based Uponor North America is part of Finland-based Uponor Corp.The PEX pipe used for the ceremony was specially marked with the date and location and given to attendees after the event.Dancing into the hallWe've written many times about the Toy Hall of Fame, but the Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, N.Y., is also home to the World Video Game Hall of Fame.While there are plenty of plastic components within any electronic toy, one of the inductees for 2022 relies even more on plastic, in this case a PVC sheet with sensors that make up the playing surface for home versions of Dance Dance Revolution.Like the Toy Hall of Fame, video games must meet certain criteria to qualify for a spot in the hall: Be considered an icon, show longevity, have wide geographical reach and influence other games.Since its debut in 1998, Dance Dance Revolution (also known as Dancing Stage in some areas) has gone on to influence other music-based video games with their own unique plastic interfaces for play, such as Guitar Hero and Rock Band. source : https://www.plasticsnews.com/kickstart/ev-sales-increasing-batteries-become-bigger-questionedit : handler
Editor 2022-05-16
Water in PET bottles continues US dominance, but soft drinks reboundAustin, Texas — People drank more bottled water than ever in the United States last year, and more water than ever was consumed from single-serve PET containers.Research from the New York-based consulting firm Beverage Market Corp. shows bottled water became the largest beverage category ever for the country in 2021, surpassing carbonated soft drink's all-time high of 15.3 billion gallons in 2004."There's no reason to think that will not happen again this year because bottled water continues to grow," said Gary Hemphill, managing director at BMC, Feb. 15 at The Packaging Conference in Austin.Bottled water accounted for 24.6 percent of the U.S. beverage market last year, Hemphill said, according to preliminary results. That's up from 23.6 percent in 2020 and 18.7 percent in 2015.Carbonated soft drinks (CSD) represented 18.7 percent of the total U.S. beverage market volume in 2021, up from 18.4 percent in 2020, but still down from the 20.3 percent total posted in 2015.This uptick also can be expressed as a 2.2 percent volume increase within just the CSD category, a reversal from a 3.7-percent decrease in CSD volume in 2020 as COVID-19 curtailed movement and out-of-home experiences."One of the interesting things that happened last year is that carbonated soft drinks actually grew," Hemphill said. "It's kind of a big event if you are selling carbonated soft drinks or if you are drinking them, it's nice that the category has rebounded a little bit."Last year's CSD rebound reversed a 16-year trend of consumption decreases in that category, Hemphill said.Hemphill said that despite the increase, the uptick could be short lived."I think the big question going forward is if this rebound is sustainable. We'll see about that.," he said.Even though CSD companies have endured eroding demand, the market has been able to counteract the volume declines with price increases. "On a dollar basis, the category is doing very well, lest you feel for the category," Hemphill said.Milk, another beverage that commonly is packaged in plastic, had an 8.1 percent share last year, down from 8.4 percent in 2020 and 9.3 percent in 2015, BMC reported.PET single-serve water bottles represented 71 percent of the total bottled water market in 2021, up from 70.5 percent in 2020 and 68.4 percent in 2015. Bottles ranging in size from 1 to 2.5 gallons were 7.8 percent of the 2021 market, down from 8.1 percent in 2020 and 9.3 percent in 2015.Home and office delivery, another category that uses plastic bottles, was at 9.3 percent of the total last year, equal to 2020's totals, but down from 11.6 percent in 2015, BMC reported.Overall, plastic, metal and glass represents more than 90 percent of the beverage packaging used, BMC reports."Over the last five years, plastic has seen the most growth due mostly to the success of the bottled water category while cans increased in 2021," according to Hemphill's presentation.Plastic held 45.8 percent of the packaging market share for all beverages in 2021, down slightly from 45.9 percent in 2020, but up from 41.4 percent in 2015. Metal cans were at 37 percent last year, up from 36.2 percent in 2020 and 36.9 percent in 2015. Glass, meanwhile, checked in at 11.4 percent in 2021, 11.7 percent in 2020 and 14.3 percent in 2015.Subscribe to Plastics News now for award-winning news and insight.Paper was 4.3 percent last year, 4.5 percent in 2020 and 5.3 percent in 2015. And all other packaging was 1.5 percent in 2021, 1.6 percent in 2020 and 2.2 percent in 2015, BMC said.Bottled water consumption has been growing for years and was up again by 4.5 percent in 2021. That followed a 4.1 percent increase in 2020 and a 3.7 percent increase in 2019. Increases in previous years included: 4.9 percent in 2018; 6.1 percent in 2017; 7.9 percent in 2016; and 7.6 percent in 2015, Hemphill reported.While bottled water continues to lead in beverage sales, the category also rose in price in 2021 by 6.4 percent, BMC reported. That compares with an overall average increase of 7.8 percent for all beverage categories. Sports beverages was tops with a 12.7-percent increase in 2021, followed by carbonated soft drinks at 9.4 percent. Sparkling and seltzer water was up 6.1 percent, and enhanced water was up 4.7 percent."Beverages experienced unprecedented retail price increases in 2021 with some segments still seeing accelerations. Higher prices are likely to continue well into 2022," according to Hemphill's presentation.source : Water in PET bottles continues US dominance, but soft drinks rebound | Plastics Newsedit : plastic handler 
Editor 2022-02-22
Sumitomo (SHI) Demag on track for record sales in 2021Sales of injection molding machines built by Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery GmbH are forecast to surpass pre-pandemic levels and could reach an all-time high in 2021 as demand continues to increase for all-electric models.The Schwaig, Germany-based company expects sales to hit 808 million euros if this year's trend continues.Sumitomo (SHI) Demag sells about 7,000 presses annually and is the third largest injection molding machine builder in the world behind Haitian and Engel.The medical and packaging markets comprise about two-thirds of sales and the electronics market has picked up, according to Sumitomo (SHI) Demag CEO Gerd Liebig."We are very close to the fight against the pandemic," Liebig said of the medical market. "We offer many solutions in the US, Europe and China for the whole range of possibilities for test for coronavirus and now the vaccination campaign. For customers in Europe, the main focus is pipette tips and we are very strong in this."Medical and electronic processors prefer all-electric machines to avoid use of hydraulic oils and for energy efficiency."The market direction is to go to all-electric machines," Liebig said. "The ratio all over the world is increasing, particularly for medical and electronic. For the United States and Japan it's very high. In China, it's also now increasing."In the electronic segment, half of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag' customers serve the automotive market and half produce building-related products, such as lighting, Liebig said."When these customers buy, they tend to buy a high number of machines," he added.Meanwhile, the packaging market is under some pressure right now because of higher resin prices for materials like polypropylene and polyethylene. Liebig said the company is seeing some hesitation to invest."In packaging, the material price is very important," he said, noting this market dynamic could keep the company from setting an all-time highest sales rate.If that's the case, sales would likely be about 800 million euros, which would be about the same as the 2018 record year.Through the pandemic, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag has maintained a workforce of about 3,000 employees."So now it's possible to increase very quickly our production capacity," Liebig said.He expects the move toward tethered caps to create new demand for the company."Customers are investing in molds. I see the trend. That will start the end of this year and it will influence the packaging industry in the next year," Liebig said. "We are No. 1 in packaging in the world. We are extremely strong in thin walls and the caps and closures."A complete packagePost-pandemic trends indicate packaging producers are concerned about sustainability and the cost and quality of green packaging, which company officials said tends to be less expensive because of the trend to use less material and integrate processes like foaming.For Fakuma 2021, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag brought the El-Exis SP 250 and is demonstrating a cup application made from an International Sustainability and Carbon Certification Plus (ISCC)-certified polypropylene material.ISCC Plus certification is a globally-recognized system for providing traceability of recycled and renewable-based materials across the supply chain.The El-Exis SP 250 has the fastest opening and closing sides on the market, according to Arnaud Nomblot, Sumitomo's business development director of packaging."Achieving injection speeds of 1,000 millimeters per second (mm/s) with short cycle times is a direct result of the hydraulic accumulator. Further supporting the sustainability agenda, processors can produce ever thinner and lighter packaging items, significantly reducing raw material requirements, packaging waste and carbon footprint," Nomblot said.The accumulator was developed about 15 years ago but has been modified over the years, according to Hans Schorr von Carolsfeld, an application engineer who talked with Fakuma attendess about the white PP cups being produced with a recyclable blue polyolefin wrap produced with feedstock derived from waste streams."We change drives and pumps and make modifications based on the knowledge we gain when they're out in the market," von Carolsfeld said. "The accumulator has a higher speed and acceleration. We're not traveling a long way so acceleration is very important. We can inject below a tenth of a second for the 64 grams of polypropylene."Sumitomo (SHI) Demag's trade fair slogan is Act! "Sustainably" and officials says the El-Exis SP series underpins its production innovations and mission statement that only machines and equipment that are compatible with ecological and corporate social responsibility credentials will be considered for production projects moving forward.Other demonstrationsSumitomo (SHI) Demag also is demonstrating all-electric injection molding machines for LSR, medical and in-mold decoration (see related story on robots) applications.The company unveiled an elastomer injection molding system featuring an Elect 130/520-450 with an LSR package and Servomix Z200 metering system from partner Nexus Elastomer Systems GmbH, Eberstalzell in Austria. A demonstration system is producing a complex automotive seal.The seal is designed to be molded using a "direct gate" without material closure, according to Henrik Langwald, director of automotive and electronics."The sealing lip must be completely pronounced to offer full functionality," he said. "We are setting a new benchmark to repeatably mold the tightest tolerances in 16 cavities, burr-free, with no conversion."Sumitomo (SHI) Demag also has a production cell for technical medical parts featuring the IntElect S 100/460-250 with an automation system from Waldorf Technik GmbH, Engen. The cell is based on the German partner's patented Vario Tip FSS (floor space saving) system."The uncompromising design of this trade exhibit showcases the production of medical parts and caps for insulin syringes, on a 16-cavity mold in a total cycle time of around six seconds," according to Anatol Sattel, director of medical business development.In another display, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag and partner Sepro Robotique are producing an onyx-style shell on an all-electric IntElect 130/520-450 injection molding machine. Using a tool created by Polar- Form Werkzeugbau GmbH, Lahr, the two tone black and white translucent layered mineral replicates ABS.Condition monitoringSumitomo (SHI) Demag also is launching a series of permanent machine status condition monitoring systems aimed at reducing maintenance costs while maintaining reliability. The systems can determine the actual degree of wear and tear, enabling early detection and maintenance planning towards the end of the service life of the injection molding machine.   With condition monitoring, complex processes can be analyzed directly on the machine, making it possible to monitor critical parameters.   At Fakuma 2021, the company will present three options that can be implemented across all series. The first helps to keep all-electric machines permanently energy-efficient and powerful. Another serves to optimize hydraulic machine oil parameters and maintain component quality. The third reliably monitors control voltage across the entire injection molding machine series.   "Currently, our efforts are focused on detecting abrasion and wear to the screw, the plasticizing cylinder and the ball screws on all-electric injection molding machines," said Thorsten Thümen, senior director of technology at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag.   The plan was to first focus on components where failures incur the highest costs and lengthiest machine downtimes. However, further developments to the portfolio of solutions are underway.   "Our ultimate goal is full monitoring of all critical components prone to wear," Thümen said.   For hydraulic machines, where oil usage enables trouble-free operation, but can also signal problems, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag offers additional measurement sensors for monitoring two parameters during machine operation. One is a monitor that continuously records the number and size of particles contained in the fluid.   The second is a measuring device that detects the physical properties of the oil, such as the water content, permittivity and conductivity.   Based on these measured values, the lubricant age can be determined via internal algorithms, according to Jan Taufer, project manager for condition monitoring. Prospective problems can be addressed before the chemical properties change to the extent that trouble-free operation can no longer be guaranteed, he added.   "This way, accelerated oxidation or wear processes, cooler breaks or water ingress due to condensation can also be detected and remedied at an earlier stage with minimal effort," Taufer said.   For reliable power supply, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag offers a system for monitoring the 24 V control voltage of the injection molding machines across the entire series. This is achieved by a power supply unit and intelligent circuit breakers that communicate with the machine control. The actual and effective cycle current can be monitored in real time.   "Consequently, potentially critical peaks or generally high utilization rates can be identified and countermeasures can be initiated at the earliest stage," Taufer said.   For medical processorsAnother trade fair exhibit was designed to produce medical insulin syringe caps on a 16-cavity mold in a six second cycle time with a fully automated work cell that is networked and offers digital quality control.   After taking the syringe caps from the injection molding machine, a removal gripper transfers them in order into a sliding table. From there, the caps are placed into racks, maintaining the sorting of each individual cavity.   After filling, the parts are checked for possible damage using a Kitov camera, Sattel said.   "At the point of ejecting all 16 parts, the system features a quality assurance station," he added. "A Sawyer cobot then waits at the outlet of the system and removes the filled racks from the system."   In the near future, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag plans to develop assistance apps for setting up and optimizing processes along with a material and knowledge library, and simulation tools for advanced settings and deeper insights into the processes.   "Our vision is an intelligent machine that can independently make predictions about part quality, machine wear and failures and perform optimizations online," Sattel said. "This enables process consistency to be increased, improvement in product quality, and maintenance to be adjusted accordingly."   Sumitomo (SHI) Demag officials say the exhibit also demonstrates the company's competence in mass-producing medical applications with extremely tight tolerances.   Connecting machines and robotsIn addition, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag is addressing ways to meet future networking and communication requirements as another step toward Industry 4.0. All of the company's robots and machines are now aligned to the OPC/UA control for monitoring and integration interface.   For example, all new dosing devices now feature the recently released OPC-UA interface and directly link metering measurement data with the IntElect 130/520-450 processing data to ensure a traceable and stable production process.   At its LSR exhibit, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag demonstrates the importance of using robotics to eliminate component contamination and issues, which in this case is the sealing function.   "With SAM-C, we have succeeded in engineering the smallest automated injection molding production cell comprising robot and material handling technology," Jürgen Schulze, director of automation, said describing the handle-and-place solution.   The machine builder also is presenting its advanced web-based software solution myConnect. This central platform gives customers direct access to a wide range of fully networked support services and helps to manage inefficiencies, reduce costs, improve total cost of ownership, troubleshoot errors and minimize downtime.source : https://www.plasticsnews.com/news/sumitomo-shi-demag-built-injection-molding-machine-sales-are-track-record-salesedit : handler
editor 2021-11-24