ArticlesFeaturedLatex and Natural Rubber

Nitrile latex for gloves

The federal government, particularly the Defense Logistics Agency, recently indicated that its objective is to support the annual U.S. production of 50 billion nitrile gloves to satisfy the most critical U.S. medical PPE requirement. This quantity, while seemingly significant, represents about 11% of the examination gloves produced globally, and 30% of the gloves used in the U.S.
There are more than a handful of glove companies intending to contribute to the satisfaction of this government objective. The polymer designated for the gloves will be acrylonitrile butadiene latex, or nitrile latex. To produce 50 billion gloves, it will take approximately 1.1 billion pounds of nitrile latex. The U.S. presently has limited capability to manufacture nitrile latex. Most of this latex would be manufactured in Korea, Malaysia, Italy and Brazil

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ArticlesExtrusionFeaturedMachinery & EquipmentUncategorized

Medical rubber tubing process and die optimization: Die redesign and fine tuning

Part 1 of this contribution, published in the May 2021 edition of Rubber World, investigated a real manufacturer’s process that was set to produce medical tubing. It was found (through trials at the extruder, then through simulations) that the equipment available to the manufacturer was too large for the relatively low output that was required for this project, and consequently the polymer was degrading on the screw surface. It was ultimately determined through simulation that a smaller extruder, with a screw optimized for the low rate, would work better.

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ArticlesFeaturedMachinery & Equipment

Improving profitability through innovative technologies and processes

Performance material usage is increasing in the manufacture of tires. These materials are composed of various additives with different properties that require a high level of expertise to maintain their properties throughout the production process and to deliver the desired, consistently high level of required quality. This is just one aspect that increases complexity in the manufacturing process. Market demands for more cost-effective products are also constantly increasing. Operating costs eserve special attention because process optimization is paramount on every manufacturer՚s agenda. Specialty chemicals group Evonik Industries and plant automation supplier Zeppelin Systems are working closely together to show how the use of innovative products and processes can both improve the performance properties of tires, while making their manufacture even more economical.

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ArticlesFeaturedSilicone & Medical

Silicone and epoxy hybrid resins exhibit wide range of mechanical properties

The largest range of silicone and epoxy hybrid resins for the 3D printing of wearable devices, biomedical equipment and soft robotics has been developed by researchers from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD). In a study published in Applied Materials Today, the range of tunable functionally graded materials, which displayed over five orders of magnitude of elastic modulus, demonstrated excellent interfacial toughness, higher precision in complex structures and better fabrication control for the integration of mechatronic components.

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