Ynvisible Interactive Inc., a fast-growing firm in the Internet of Things (IoT) market, and PragmatIC Semiconductor, a world leader in flexible electronics, have entered into non-binding Technology Partnership and Supply Agreement, for a period of 3 years for services and deliverables of up to 2 Million U.S. dollars, focused on fully integrated flexible display modules.
Many applications in growing markets such as smart packaging and healthcare require a display, for example to provide assurance that the item was transported correctly, or to guarantee authenticity, or simply to provide a read-out of critical data. Traditional displays are inherently expensive, rigid and relatively bulky, which means that they are not suitable for packaging or printed media, or for embedding into mass market devices. Ynvisible’s printed electrochromic technology is ideal for these applications, enabling sustainable ultra-low-power displays in novel thin and flexible form factors.
But the display itself is only part of the puzzle – a driver circuit is also required to determine the behaviour of the display. Until now, this has required a separate silicon integrated circuit (or chip), which is not only cumbersome and expensive but also detracts from the form-factor benefits of a thin and flexible display. Now, Ynvisible will employ a thin and flexible integrated circuit (FlexIC) from PragmatIC Semiconductor, embedded within the printed display to deliver a complete module.
The two companies also see strong synergies in their vision of enabling innovators to create optimised custom designs in a fraction of the time and cost required using traditional electronics. Under the recently signed agreement, PragmatIC will develop and supply a range of FlexICs that Ynvisible will integrate into both standard and customer-bespoke display modules.
“By integrating flexible integrated circuits we can now dramatically enhance the product solutions we offer our customers,” said Michael Robinson, CEO of Ynvisible. “We look forward to working with PragmatIC to deliver a range of flexible display modules that can offer easy integration with enhanced functionality across our verticals of supply chain, play and packaging and medical devices.”
“Ynvisible’s electrochromic display technology is a great match for our thin, flexible chips,” said Scott White, CEO of PragmatIC Semiconductor. “Alongside our FlexIC Foundry, this accelerates our vision of opening up exciting new opportunities beyond RFID, such as smart medical devices and visually interactive packaging.”
IPS Packaging & Automation (www.ipack.com) is pleased to introduce new order tracking software that allows customers to stay updated on the status of their shipments in real time. This dynamic new software, called IPS Deliver, brings to-the-minute updates on order deliveries via email.
The IPS Deliver feature works simply to keep customers informed. Each time someone places an order with IPS Packaging & Automation that is shipped via the in-house shipping and logistics network, they will receive an email with custom order updates. This begins as soon as the truck heads out for delivery and then follows up when the buyer’s destination is next in line, again when the truck is a certain number of minutes away, and finally confirms when the order has been delivered.
Scott Beam, IPS Packaging & Automation’s Director of Operations, states that “Based on feedback from customers around the nation, we’re implementing IPS Deliver as a simple and effective method for order and delivery tracking. This all-new web interface enhances the customers experience by allowing users to see all delivery information in real-time. It also provides instant access to customer signatures and photos for proof of delivery, which significantly improves delivery and collection accuracy.”
IPS Deliver joins the company’s diverse lineup of services created specifically to improve the customer buying experience. Other features offered by the company include custom packaging engineering services, routine equipment maintenance programs, and much more. To discuss how to get started with IPS Deliver for all future orders and shipments, please contact your account manager or other representative at IPS Packaging & Automation.
Established in 1976, IPS Packaging & Automation grew to become a multi-location packaging supplier that partners with customers to mitigate creeping expenses related to labor, freight, and damaged goods. When the company's technology platform is combined with its teams of engineers and automation specialists, IPS Packaging & Automation can guarantee year-over-year innovation and savings to the exclusive partners that commit to them.
See live on-demand production of unique single-dose sachets that can be opened with a single gesture using one hand with V-Shapes PRIME with in-line printing
Wolfertschwenden, 14 September 2021 - At this year's Compamed MULTIVAC will be exhibiting packaging solutions for sensitive products. The highlight will be the RX 4.0 thermoforming packag-ing machine in GMP design, which will be presented to the visitors for the first time. In conjunction with an integrated handling mod-ule and an InteliJet HD digital printer from BELL-MARK, it forms an efficient solution for producing and printing combi packs containing a syringe, filter and vial.
Weir Minerals, manufacturer of Linatex®, the world’s leading brand of premium natural rubber, has partnered with world’s number one adhesive producer Henkel and its team of LOCTITE® adhesive, sealant and coating specialists, to develop a mining industry-first solvent-free adhesive for rubber lining applications with zero volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
VOCs are carbon-based, organic chemicals that are often used in adhesives, paints and coatings. They are subject to strict regulations, with some governments aiming to limit worker exposure while others target large-scale emissions, such as the People’s Republic of China’s recent ban on the production and use of high VOC-containing solvent-based coatings and adhesives in order to improve air quality. Mining companies also target VOC emissions as part of their sustainability strategies.
Always striving to develop new solutions that meet the needs of their mining customers, in collaboration with Henkel, Weir Minerals developed the LINATEX® LOCTITE® - LINA 88™ cold-bonding rubber adhesive range as a response to the growing need for safer and more sustainable products. Complementing the industry-leading Linatex® rubber products, this breakthrough in adhesive technology reflects Weir’s core values of safety, sustainability and performance.
With new LINATEX® LOCTITE® - LINA 88™ products, cutting down the VOC emissions does not mean having to compromise on performance. The custom-formulated LINATEX® LOCTITE® - LINA 88™ rubber adhesive range sets a new industry benchmark for bond strength by exceeding the current British Standard by up to four times and is significantly stronger than other products presently used in mining.
“We've had many customers across the globe approach us to make sure that the products they use on site are safe for their employees working in confined spaces,” explains Mark Doyle, Global Product Manager – Linatex® Rubber and Hose. “At Weir Minerals we take safety very seriously and looked at several possible solutions. Our team worked closely with the LOCTITE experts and developed an adhesive that is stronger than any other product in the market today with the double benefit of being solvent-free with zero VOCs. Coincidentally, many mine sites and even regional governments are now starting to mandate that only adhesives with zero VOCs be used on site – we are thrilled to say that we have a product that meets this challenge.”
Safety and sustainability focus was the main driver of the project, points out Ricardo Garib, Weir Minerals Division President: “Working with Henkel to develop an adhesive that not only outperforms what is currently in the market, but also delivers environmental and safety benefits is a fantastic result for mine operators and their employees. Weir Minerals promotes a safe environment for everyone; we consider it a priority for our customers and our own people in our service centres where we line minerals processing equipment with Linatex rubber. With sustainability a key issue within our industry, we are proud to be at the forefront with innovative new products”.
“We are so pleased that our partnership with Weir Minerals has helped bring this new innovation to market,” states Mark Dorn, Senior Vice President Craftsmen, Construction & Professional, and President Henkel Asia Pacific. “It’s always exciting to pioneer new solutions for our customers that are able to deliver on both innovation and sustainability. Being able to positively impact environmental and occupational safety for those in the mining industry is definitely a rewarding accomplishment for the team.”
Eric Saunders, Vice-President, Global Head of Marketing and Strategy - Adhesive Technologies, is also extremely proud to share this significant milestone with Weir Minerals: “Delivering this breakthrough innovation to the market is representative of the mission that the LOCTITE business has delivered on for nearly 70 years. It’s about leveraging our expertise, our passion for innovation and our focus on solving the most difficult challenges to create new value for customers. Having the opportunity to bring this to life in collaboration with another industry leader like Weir Minerals has been extremely satisfying and is a true model for future success in the area of innovation.”
The new LINATEX® LOCTITE® - LINA 88™ adhesive range has undergone extensive trials in the APAC region, exceeding customer expectations. Weir Minerals will be specifying the new solvent-free and zero VOCs products for all their Linatex® applications around the world.
The entire range is non-flammable and is therefore safer to use, easy to transport and does not require any special handling or storage facilities. It can also be sprayed over the top of rubber lining to provide solid UV protection.
When combining the enhanced strength of the new LINATEX® LOCTITE® - LINA 88™ adhesive range with the long wear life of Linatex® premium rubber, the result is a highly sought-after sustainable solution for miners looking for long-lasting protection for their equipment.
The LINATEX® LOCTITE® - LINA 88™ solvent-free adhesive range is available globally.
Tekni-Plex has named Chris Qualters as CEO of the company’s Healthcare division.
Qualters joined Tekni-Plex in November as president of Tekni-Plex Medical, responsible for all aspects of the company’s global medical device business. He was tasked with designing and implementing a comprehensive business strategy to bolster Tekni’s position as a key solutions partner to Medical Device organizations.
Despite the ongoing pandemic, the european tube manufacturers association (etma) reports stable deliveries in the first half of 2021. The total deliveries of aluminum, plastic and laminate tubes even increased slightly by 0.5 percent to a level of around 6 billion units.
While deliveries to the pharmaceutical industry fell by 11 percent, deliveries to the dental care market increased by 4 percent, to the cosmetics market by 2 percent and to the markets for food and household products by as much as 10 percent and 13 percent respectively.
Aptar’s high-performance Neo™ closure featured on HiPP’s new infant formula packaging launches in selected Asian marketsNews:
HiPP, the largest processor of organic-biological raw materials worldwide, and one of the leaders in the global infant food market, utilized Aptar’s breakthrough thinking to re-design their infant formula packaging for specific Asian markets, including China and Hong Kong. Aptar leveraged its expertise and history of innovation in the development of a customized version of their Neo™ closure, to maximize parents’ experience when selecting and using HiPP infant formula.
Enhanced Consumer Experience
This new closure solution includes a tamper-evidence band to assure parents that the package has not been opened prior to purchase. The wide finger-recess, the lid diameter of 127mm, and an easily accessible scoop allow parents the convenience and safety of one-handed dispensing. The Neo closure features an audible “click” to reassure parents the package is fully closed after use while also reducing the risk of contamination.
Safety is the number one priority for any caregiver purchasing and preparing infant formula. Similar to all other Aptar infant nutrition closures, HiPP’s customized Neo closure is manufactured in a High-Care area, free of contamination to provide maximum product hygiene and safety.
Superior Production and Technology
The flexband design offers a low-application force on the production line that is ideal for mechanical or manual application and helps center the closure onto the can, whether metal or composite. The flexband helps protect the formula from insects and other possible contaminants. Aptar’s best-in-class technologies are validated by several independent laboratories. HiPP’s customized version of Neo allows for maximum stackability, helping save space in transport and in commercial and home storage. In addition, this solution is slightly taller than the standard Neo version to accommodate a wider range of measuring scoop sizes.
This packaging is intended to maintain the properties of food for a longer period without the need to add chemical additives, as the packaging itself acts as an active barrier that favours preservation. This is because this biodegradable film contains antimicrobial and antioxidant compounds from mango leaf extract that have been tested in vitro, while at the same time offering a more powerful ultraviolet light filter that delays food spoilage.
In order to reach these conclusions, the researchers compared two different techniques for obtaining the packaging. The conventional one consists of dissolving the components in a solvent, which is later removed. The other alternative procedure does not require the use of chemical solvents, but uses supercritical CO2 to functionalize the polymer, which provides the bioplastic with more effective physico-chemical and bioactive properties than those obtained by conventional treatment. The novelty of this study lies in the fact that it validates the latter method of obtaining this film which prolongs food preservation and, at the same time, acts as a barrier against food pathogens.
This bioactive packaging, that is, with antimicrobial and antioxidant properties from mango leaf extract, increases the protective barrier against ultraviolet light. “Thanks to it, food wrapped in this film could be preserved longer without the addition of preservatives. The film itself replaces the chemical additive, since the active substance exerts its effect via the packaging without the need to add anything to the food,” Cristina Cejudo, researcher at the University of Cadiz and co-author of the study, pointed out to Fundación Descubre.
To develop this bioplastic, the experts used mango leaf extracts from pruning remains from the cultivation of this fruit at the experimental farm of the Institute of Subtropical and Mediterranean Horticulture ‘La Mayora’ in Malaga (Spain). The nanofibrillated cellulose that forms the polymer comes from the chemical and enzymatic treatment of a paper industry waste product.
Conventional solvent casting vs supercritical solvent impregnation
With these materials, the research team has used two different procedures to compare their physical properties and bioactive function, as explained in their study published in the journal Food Hydrocolloids ("Biobased films of nanocellulose and mango leaf extract for active food packaging: Supercritical impregnation versus solvent casting").
On the one hand, researchers used the conventional casting method, which consists of adding the active compound before polymerising the plastic, that is, before binding its compounds. The process therefore consists of dissolving the mango leaf extract and the nanocellulose and subsequently polymerising and drying the solvents at a temperature of 45 °C.
For the treatment based on the supercritical impregnation technology, they used an extract previously obtained by the same technique. “By doing so, a better dissolution of the extract is achieved during the impregnation of the polymer, since the mango extract penetrates into the composition of the nanocellulose at the surface level, which favours the migration of the active compounds, thereby taking less time to exert its preservative action,” explains researcher Cejudo.
An additional advantage of the supercritical technique is that the pathogen inhibition is higher due to the selection of the most bioactive compounds in mango extract for supercritical impregnation. This gives the plastic a higher concentration of these compounds than the conventional technique. “As a result, the active properties of the mango remain intact after impregnation, which increases the film’s ability to protect food,” says Cejudo.
With these results, the research team has verified the effectiveness of the supercritical impregnation technique to obtain this new bioactive packaging. “This treatment is effective and valid because it helps to preserve food with a more perishable shelf life and also offers the advantage that it can be applied without the use of solvents or artificial chemical compounds,” says the expert.
Whereas with the conventional method the container is orange-coloured due to a stronger interaction of the mango with the polymer, with the supercritical impregnation it acquires a greenish colour, similar to that of the original mixture, because the deposition is more superficial, which also favours a faster performance of the compounds during packaging.
In vitro tests on food pathogens
At the same time and in order to test the efficacy of the new packaging obtained by supercritical impregnation, the research team evaluated in vitro the antimicrobial performance against two food pathogens: Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli.
With this test, they found that the mango polyphenols present in the bioactive film prevent the spread of both microorganisms due to their antimicrobial properties. “This result shows that the new bioplastic can be used as packaging to inhibit the spread of pathogens and prevent food spoilage,” points out Cejudo.
Besides, the presence of the extract in the film increases the UV-barrier, which reduce the amount of incident light that also causes food spoilage, especially on foods containing oxidable compounds such as lipids.
This study is in addition to a similar one they carried out a year ago to design another novel form of packaging using a food plastic to which they added beetroot extract, rich in antioxidant compounds. After carrying out a preliminary test, they achieved a product that aims to improve the characteristics of the containers currently used to give longer shelf life to the food without it losing its properties.
The next step for this research team will be to study how this bioactive packaging responds to preserving especific foods and to analyse its performance at pilot scale.
A Dutch custom injection and blow molder has outfitted 40 extrusion blow molding machines with a wireless system for monitoring operating status and plans to extend the system to 30 more injection-blow and injection molding machines. Flestic in Dronten, the Netherlands, is now using the SmartMonitor system from Werma Signaltechnik in Germany (Werma USA Inc., Norcross, Ga., werma.com), which is described as a simple, cost-effective and retrofittable alternative to more complex monitoring systems. It’s designed to be ready to use “out of the box” and to quickly help manufacturers increase productivity and minimize downtime.
Flestic employs more than 80 people in a more than 75,350 ft2 production area devoted to producing bottles, tubs and closures for food, cosmetics, household and personal-care packaging, as well as some automotive applications. Says Bas van Nes, a safety engineer who has worked at Flestic for over 25 years, “Until now, we could only roughly measure productivity on the basis of the figures we determined ourselves. That was simply not enough for us. We wanted accurate, reliable metrics and also to see when a machine started and stopped, or what the reason was for that stoppage. This has been a gray area for us, but one we were eager to shed light on.”
The Werma SmartMonitor system, which has over 4000 installations worldwide on injection molding, metalworking and a wide variety of other machinery, consists of two main components. One is a three-colored signal light atop the machine, which signals red for a machine stoppage, yellow for temperature out of range (used by other molders to indicate an open safety gate), and green for normal operation. The second main component is the wireless monitoring system. Using what’s said to be a “robust and proven radio network” (868 MHz), a signal tower on each machine transmits data to a receiver that saves all data in a Microsoft SQL database. The system reportedly can be installed on any type, age or make of machine. It can report frequency and causes of downtime as well as production data.
Since installing the system, says van Ness, “We can see every start and stop of the machines—both on the screen and on the machine itself. It’s visually clear which machines are running. We can see immediately where there are malfunctions or a breakdown and can therefore react immediately.” He says the company plans to install a signal light in the employee canteen as well. “This should immediately inform our employees of a machine stoppage, even during breaks.”
Van Ness adds that Flestic moves its machines around occasionally, and thanks to the wireless SmartMonitor, he doesn’t have to worry about communications cabling to make such changes. Also, he notes, “We can network virtually every machine in our company with the system, such as chillers, compressors, and so on—I see a lot of possibilities.”