Those crossing the Atlantic for K show this year, take note. Before, or after, trekking that 2.2 million square feet of fairgrounds, North American visitors may want to work in one or more of the five English-language conferences planned around K'95, the International Trade Fair for Plastics and Rubber, slated for Oct. 5-12 in Dusseldorf, Germany. To coincide with this year's show, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers is hosting its first European plastics forum. SME's International Plastics Design & Processing Conference is scheduled for Oct. 2-4 at the Linder Hotel Rheinstern in Dusseldorf.
The three-part conference will explore design breakthroughs and processing innovations for plastic parts for a variety of markets including appliance, medical, electronic and automotive; designing injection molded parts for assembly; and rapid tooling from rapid prototyping and manufacturing.
A two-day clinic, Oct. 2-3, will head the conference. Day one focuses on new part design capabilities, followed, on day two, by the various technologies that make those applications possible.
Among the scheduled topics are injection molding multimaterial parts for greater functionality; designing and injection molding giant parts, such as phone booths, recycling bins and large-appliance housings; meeting the challenges of micromolding and miniature parts; tapping the potential of lost-core molding for markets other than automotive; and making structural parts with complex shapes, using such techniques as gas-assisted injection molding, engineered blow molding and twin-sheet thermoforming.
Designing Injection Molded Parts for Assembly, Oct. 3-4, will cover plastic materials and their properties, safety in design and processing, assembly techniques, press fitting, snap fitting, living hinges, and software.
Rapid Tooling from Rapid Prototyping & Manufacturing, on Oct. 4, will wrap up SME's three-day event.
The full conference package includes a K'95 show pass and a tour of a Battenfeld GmbH machine plant.
For information on cost and schedules, contact SME in Dearborn, Mich., at (800) 733-4763.
Southeast of Dusseldorf, a two-hour trip by train along the Rhine, lies Mainz, Germany, site of Bev-Pak Europe '95. Directions 21 Inc. is sponsoring the pre-show packaging event, to be held Oct. 2-3 at the Hilton Hotel in Mainz. Bev-Pak replaces predecessor Europak, which had been sponsored by Len Ryder, who retired.
Analysts and executives at Bev-Pak will discuss recent developments in markets and technology for beverage containers, said Peter Weggeman, president of Directions 21.
On the agenda is the growing market for hot-fill PET bottles in Western Europe for sports drinks, juices and teas, Weggeman said. But, polyethylene naphthalate will begin to compete with typical, hot-fill PET bottles for some applications in Europe, he said. The next few months will mark PEN's introduction into the European market for use in rigid beverage containers, probably refillable juice containers, Weggeman said March 31.
The conference also will look at the superclean technology for food-contact applications for recycled PET, developed by John-son Controls Inc. of Milwaukee.
Bev-Pak also will track packaging in Eastern Europe, Russia and possibly the Middle East, Weggeman said.
For more information, contact Directions 21 in Sarasota, Fla., at (813) 925-2188.
A word of advice to North American visitors. Oct. 3 is German National Unity Day, a holiday observed by government agencies and businesses such as banks, post offices and stores. However, public transportation will be up and running, and most restaurant doors wide open.
Autoplas '95: World Congress on Plastics & Rubber in Automotive Applications will run Oct. 3-4 at Dusseldorf Hotel in Dusseldorf.
Automotive applications will be a big part of K'95, according to sponsor Schotland Business Research Inc.
Autoplas' theme is the projected growth for plastics and rubber in automotive applications during the next five years. Sessions will target material changes for auto interiors; meeting fuel emission regulations; new under-the-hood plastics; approaches to weight reduction; innovative processing technologies; automotive electronic advances; and vehicle recycling.
Schotland expects more than 300 people to attend.
For more information, contact Robin Geary in Skillman, N.J., at (609) 466-9191.
Planes, boats and auto-mobiles may bring some hardy K-show goers to yet-another conference in neighboring Austria.
The Total Life Cycle Conference and Exposition: Land, Sea & Air Mobility is set for Oct. 16-19 in Vienna.
The conference, sponsored by the Society of Automotive Engineers International, will spotlight the challenges of material recovery and designing vehicles for recyclability. Technical sessions run both days, and will include papers on life-cycle analysis in car design; methodologies and management; structural auto-motive composites; engineering polymers; mechanical and chemical recycling processing for automotive plastics; and vehicle emissions.
For more information, contact Sandy Gadzia at SAE International at (412) 772-7169.
The full package costs registrants $450 before Sept. 1, $530 afterward, and includes conference proceedings. Daily rates are also available.
The Society of Plastics Engineers European sections are sponsoring Plastics High Performance Packaging, Oct. 3-4 at Nikko Hotel in Dusseldorf. For information, call 32 (0)3 541-7755.
The K show's 15 halls of 2,141 exhibits already are booked to capacity by processors, materials and equipment suppliers, trade groups and service organizations, according to its organizer, Dusseldorf Trade Shows. The Society of the Plastics Industry Inc. of Washington will sponsor two U.S. pavilions. For more information, including a list of exhibitors, call Dusseldorf Trade Shows in Chicago at (312) 781-5180.