Image: a grey and green machine; Copyright: Erema

EREMA: "PredictOn:Drive", a new tool for predictive maintenance

04/11/2022

Real-time visualisation of process and machine data holds great potential for the circular economy as a whole and for recycling processes in particular. At K 2022 EREMA launched "PredictOn:Drive", a predictive maintenance application for its recycling machines.
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Machine communication: OPC UA as the linguistic basis

04/10/2022

Communication is key, and this also applies to machines, since the ability of machines to communicate has economic advantages. However, this first requires a common linguistic basis, because then the machines can be used particularly efficiently.
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Sustainability by digitalization: Inventory machines become capable of communication

13/09/2022

What's old is far from bad. This also applies to machines - however, they are often not capable of communicating. Yet it is precisely this ability that is of interest when it comes to evaluating data or correcting errors. Injection molding machine manufacturer Steinl has found a way to connect even older machines to a communication network.
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Augmented Reality in the plastics industry: individualized instructions for the entire product life cycle

25.08.2022

Individualization is the trend. In the plastics industry, too, more and more individualized machines are coming onto the market. Of course, these machines also require individualized manuals with instructions tailored specifically to them. However, this is not yet a reality today. The AdaptAR project wants to change that – with the help of Augmented Reality and an app.
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Image: Close up of male hand holding black plastic polymer granules; Copyright: FabrikaPhoto

Photosynthesis-inspired process makes commodity chemicals

18/07/2022

A Northwestern University research team used a new method to convert acetylene to ethylene, a widely used, highly valuable chemical that is an important component of plastics. They use a process similar to photosynthesis that is much less expensive and less energy intensive.
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North American plastics sector holds steady, while riding a roller-coaster of uncertainty

08/07/2022

The pandemic. Supply chain ruptures. The Great Resignation. China trade tensions. Climate change and extreme weather events. Soaring inflation. Stock market volatility. The war in Ukraine. Seldom in our lifetimes have we experienced such an extended period of disruption and uncertainty.
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Image: male hands use smartphone. Left: laptop; Copyright: stevanovicigor

Solvay extends its sustainable polymer offering for smart devices and wearables

21/06/2022

Solvay launched the Kalix® 10000 series, a partially bio-based material made with renewable feedstock from non-food competing sources, is produced with 100% renewable electricity.
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App, AI, data glasses: digital toolbox for the plastics industry is well filled

28/02/2022

We live in a world in which processes are becoming increasingly complex. This also applies to the plastics industry. One way to support people in production with their demanding tasks is through digital tools – and not only on site at the plant, but also remotely. The increasing amount of data also contributes to predictive maintenance of machines.
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Breakthrough in separating plastic waste

21/02/2022

With a new technology it is possible to analyse and categorise the type of plastic by using a hyperspectral camera in the infrared area and machine learning. The technology makes it possible to separate plastics based on a purer chemical composition than is possible today, and this opens up for completely new opportunities to recycle plastics.
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Researchers seek to re-use waste plastics to make valuable petrochemicals

14/02/2022

With a new method West Virginia University engineers upcycle single-use plastic packaging into petrochemicals. The produced ethylene and BTX aromatics from plastic upcycling can be used as feedstocks to re-make plastics.
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Neste and Ravago plan to set up a joint venture to focus on chemical recycling of waste plastic

14/02/2022

Neste and Ravago intend to establish a joint venture to build an industrial chemical recycling facility in the North Sea port of Vlissingen, the Netherlands. From there, global chemical recycling activities will be managed, building on the further development of thermochemical liquefaction technology by U.S.-based Alterra Energy, an innovative chemical recycling technology company.
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DarWIN research project accelerates multi-manufacturer machine learning

07/02/2022

New AI-based process optimisation tools have been developed specifically targeting injection moulding machines. Plus10 and the SKZ performed a series of thorough AI pilot tests on Sumitomo (SHI) Demag machines.
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The many ways that 'going digital' is changing manufacturing

23/08/2021

There are many aspects and forms of digitalization in manufacturing, ranging from Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence and additive manufacturing, to augmented and virtual reality, 5G connectivity, mobile apps, blockchain technology, and more.
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Soft robots: smart elastomers are making the robots of the future more touchy-feely

19/07/2021

Imagine flexible surgical instruments that can twist and turn in all directions like miniature octopus arms, or how about large and powerful robot tentacles that can work closely and safely with human workers on production lines.
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Industry 4.0: "We should seize opportunities and create added digital value"

04/05/2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the rise of the digital workplace. This also applies to industry in general, where massive amounts of data are collected from countless sources. The so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution (or Industry 4.0) aims to use this data to gain actionable insights and target the development of marketable products, technologies, and services.
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Connecting apprentices with plastics companies

30/03/2021

Preparing small and medium-sized plastics manufacturing enterprises for the challenges of digitization in the vocational training and continuing education of employees and apprentices – that was the objective of the project titled "Kunststoff goes Future", abbreviated KungFu. The project ran for three years in the Ostwestfalen-Lippe district, Germany. It was successfully completed in mid-2020.
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Face composed of plastic cubes

Identification of off-odours in polymers

25/08/2020

There are limits to the use of olfactorily contaminated plastics for the production of fresh materials. Odorous contamination of them needs to be minimised so that they are suitable for manufacturing new plastic products. A combination of analytical and sensor technology can help to identify olfactory contaminants and to check the efficiency and effectiveness of cleaning processes.
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