Plastics News staff reporter Frank Esposito wrote the following news briefs on the compounding industry.
Polychem Alloy adds to TPE compound
LENOIR, N.C. - PolyChem Alloy Inc. is seeing early success marketing its Flexgel-brand thermoplastic elastomer compounds into shoe insole and fishing lure applications, according to sales and marketing director Jeffrey Vance.
The firm began making the Flexgel line at its Lenoir plant earlier this year and expects to add a nonhalogenated PP compound to its product mix by year's end.
PolyChem Alloy also is looking to build its presence in the European wire and cable market and expects to add a West Coast sales rep in the near future.
TP Composites enjoys 5 million pound boost
ASTON, PA. - TP Composites Inc. of Aston has added a compounding line that will boost annual capacity by 5 million pounds.
The line, which launched production last month, represents a capacity increase of less than 20 percent. The firm custom compounds engineering resins, specializing in highly filled and reinforced resins and other specialty alloys and compounds.
The company averaged five new product introductions a month since late 1999, officials said.
BMC Mexico to supply Visteon in Monterrey
MONTERREY, MEXICO - Bulk Molding Compounds Inc.'s Mexican unit will supply thermoset compounds for injection molded headlamp reflectors produced at Visteon Corp.'s Monterrey plant.
Bulk Molding Compounds Mexico SA de CV, a unit of West Chicago, Ill.-based BMC, will source the material locally. The selected compound requires no preparation before flow coating, which improves productivity, cost and part quality, BMC officials said.
Ampacet, CBA market compound, additive
TARRYTOWN, N.Y. - Ampacet Corp. of Tarrytown and Ciba Specialty Chemicals of Zurich, Switzerland, are working together to market a Ciba additive that is used in a polyethylene-based Ampacet compound.
Ampacet already is using Ciba's Shelfplus-brand ultraviolet filter in a PE compound used in blow-molded high density PE containers. Ampacet now will market Shelfplus while continuing work to develop a PET-based compound that will use the additive.
The firm also has debuted a white PE-based compound for mulching film applications in the agricultural industry. The compound, which took four years to develop, is less reactive to agricultural chemicals than products currently being used, officials said.
Pontiac has interest in Schulman's Invision
BELLEVUE, OHIO - A. Schulman Inc.'s new Invision-brand polyolefin elastomer may make its automotive debut in the 2002 model Pontiac Grand Am.
The material, which is being produced at Schulman's Bellevue plant has been fast-tracked by General Motors' application process, Schulman marketing manager Gord Trimmer said.
Invision is being touted as a PVC replacement that offers superior mar resistance and is 30 percent lighter. Trimmer declined to say which Grand Am parts would use the material, but Schulman officials previously have identified armrests, console lids and assist handles as targeted auto uses.
Spartech Corp. adding to Alloy Plastics line
CLAYTON, MO. - Spartech Corp. has expanded its Alloy Plastics line with seven new compounds and alloys that it commercialized in May.
The new offerings include CamAlloy-brand camouflaged TPO/ABS - a uniquely colored product aimed at the outdoor recreation, hunting and fishing markets where it can be used in duck blinds and traditional wood-painted products - and Aero R-722, a PVC/acrylic alloy designed for aircraft galley structures, window surrounds and seatbacks.
Clayton-based Spartech has introduced 20 new products for its Alloy Plastics group in the last four years.