Plastics and rubber materials have revolutionized many aspects of sports and leisure activities over the years, and technology advances continue to improve safety, comfort, performance and – increasingly – sustainability, in those sectors.
The applications are diverse and widespread – ranging from the balls used in games and various footwear and clothing, to protective helmets and padding, playing surfaces, and gear such as racquets, golf clubs, safety eyewear, racing bikes, skis, kayaks and surfboards.
Manufacturers and brand owners, for example, are investing significant money and effort into producing sneakers and footwear that offer style, performance and increased recyclability while also leveraging techniques such as 3D printing.
Yantai, China-based materials supplier Wanhua Chemical Group Co. Ltd. has partnered with Chinese footwear maker Peak Sports to 3D print a futuristic-looking sneaker entirely from thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU). Called “The Next,” the colorful shoe is both customizable and totally recyclable, the two firms said when announcing it in October. Wanhua supplies TPU filament, powder and coatings and adhesive to make the shoe.
Germany’s Covestro, meanwhile, is also kicking up its heels in this sector. The materials supplier is working with Chinese shoe designer Axis Liu to create trendy, recyclable sneakers entirely from TPUs, as well. The partners have also developed customized running and basketball shoes, using a number of Covestro material technologies, including its Insqin-brand, water-based PU textile coatings and adhesives, urethane foams, TPU textile fibers and films, and Maezio-brand continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composites (CFRTP).
Others in that sector, such as Nike and adidas, also are finding ways to incorporate waste ocean plastics into their shoes and sportswear.
Indian start-up sports apparel company Alcis Sports, meanwhile, is making its line of athleisure clothing out of recycled PET bottles. Company co-founder Roshan Baid told The Economic Times in India in October that the firm plans to produce half its garments from recycled polyester within the next few months. Alcis claims that each T-shirt they make, for example, consumes about eight plastic bottles, saves roughly 27 liters of water, uses half the energy to produce, and reduces carbon emissions by more than 54 percent than shirts made from virgin polyester.
Companies such as Spanish injection molder RDI Plastics use polycarbonate, ABS, expanded polystyrene and other materials to make protective helmets for use in hockey, soccer, motocross and cycling, among others.
Several materials producers are very involved in supplying solutions to different parts of the sports and leisure markets. Here are just a couple examples:
DuPont Co.’s Surlyn resin finds use in golf ball covers, bowling pin covers, body boards, snowshoes and other winter sports articles. Its performance polymers, such as Delrin acetal resin, Hytrel thermoplastic elastomer and Zytel nylon resin are used in snow-shoe bindings, in-line skates, and various types of buckles and straps. And its Kevlar aramid fiber is used in sporting good components ranging from bicycle helmets and motorcycle clothing, to boating hulls and hiking boots.
BASF SE’s polyurethane-based flooring structures find use on track surfaces and children playgrounds. The materials help to provide high rebound and excellent impact absorption
, helping athletes achieve their best performance while lowering risks of exercise-related injuries for children.
When it comes to water sports, San Francisco-based Oru Kayak Inc. has applied the traditional Japanese art of origami and used it to create a series of lightweight, foldable kayaks made from corrugated polypropylene. Its products range from 12 to 16 feet long and from 26 to 34 pounds, and fold up into a suitcase-sized case with a shoulder strap that can easily be carried by one person.
French resin supplier Arkema Group also supplies materials for use in a variety of sporting applications, including for the cockpit window and the glazing shielding the two helms of its 50-foot Arkema trimaran racing boat. For that, they used Altuglas ShieldUp nanostructured acrylic sheet, which weighs about half as much as conventional glass.
In mid-October, the University of Maine’s Advanced Structures and Composites Center, in conjunction with several partners, successfully produced the world’s largest 3D printed boat, entirely from carbon fiber-reinforced ABS supplied by Techmer PM LLC. Dubbed the 3Dirigo, the 25-foot-long, 5,000-pound patrol boat was printed on a 3D printer, called the MasterPrint, made by Rockford, Ill.‐based Ingersoll Machine Tools Inc. The effort earned the group three Guinness World Records – for the world’s largest prototype polymer 3D printer, largest solid 3D‐printed object, and largest 3D‐printed boat.
And even the sports venues themselves are making good use of plastic materials. At the Rio 2016 Olympics in Brazil, for example, officials found a way to use millions of recycled plastic bottles to produce more than 6,700 seats in the Maracanã stadium.
There is no disputing the vital role that plastics and rubber materials play in virtually every aspect of the sporting world – which is why such applications will be among those in the spotlight at CHINAPLAS 2020 in Shanghai next April. For more information about CHINAPLAS 2020, please visit the official show website at www.ChinaplasOnline.com.
Starlinger: The fine art of PET bottle-to-bottle recycling at K 2022
Music, culture, and art of the highest level: That’s what Austria is all about. Austrian machine manufacturer Starlinger is perpetuating this tradition with its division recycling technology, using its decades of accumulated knowledge of plastics technology and mechanical engineering to create cutting-edge technology.
At K 2022, Starlinger recycling technology will showcase the recoSTAR PET art, the company’s latest plant model in the field of PET recycling. In addition to Starlinger’s established technology solutions such as excellent decontamination performance for food contact applications and impeccable rPET pellet quality, the new plant is characterized by particularly low energy consumption and considerably simplified maintenance processes.
For 35 years now, Starlinger recycling technology has been involved in processing plastic waste so that it can be used as an alternative resource to virgin materials. Starlinger recycling plants are used the world over to recycle used plastics from a wide variety of sectors, thus counteracting the problem of waste and scarcity of resources. Ideally, closed packaging cycles are created – as is the case with PET beverage bottles.
“What happens in the PET bottle-to-bottle recycling process to turn a used mineral water bottle back into a new mineral water bottle can be called high art,” says Paul Niedl, Commercial Director at Starlinger recycling technology. “It is a composition, a synthesis of experience combined with the latest scientific knowledge and high technological standards. Our new recoSTAR PET art embodies 20 years of experience in the field of PET food contact recycling. In addition, technical improvements have been made to make the plant easier to maintain and even more energy-efficient – in times like these, this is an important issue, especially in Europe. But we don’t want to give too much away in advance – at K 2022 and our Dynamic Days in Schwerin, interested parties can learn about the recoSTAR PET art and all its technological innovations in great detail.”
The pre-drying unit and the extruder of the new recoSTAR PET art will be on display at the Starlinger recycling technology stand in Hall 9, and the SSP reactor at the Starlinger stand in Hall 16. The company will also be showcasing machine solutions from the fields of polyester fibre/filament recycling and recycling of post-consumer polyolefins, including odour reduction technology.
Starlinger Dynamic Days in Schwerin – spotlight on PET and post-consumer plastics recycling
On 26 and 27 October 2022, while the K trade fair is taking place, Starlinger recycling technology will also be holding its “Dynamic Days” in-house exhibition at its Schwerin site in Germany, where the new recoSTAR PET art and a recoSTAR dynamic recycling plant will be in operation. Interested customers will have the option of travelling from Düsseldorf to Schwerin via Rostock and back again on their chosen day by means of a charter flight and bus transfers.
Starlinger recycling technology at K 2022: Hall 9, D07
Green, the Theme Color of CHINAPLAS
The advent of the “dual-carbon era” has triggered further efforts in reducing carbon emissions. Many countries, regions and chemical enterprises have set the goal of net-zero emissions and carbon neutrality. Green and low carbon has become a hot topic in the plastics and rubber industries. CHINAPLAS 2022, to be held from April 25 to 28, will bring together more than 4,000 prominent exhibitors from all over the world to launch innovative green solutions. A lot of can’t-miss concurrent events will be organized during CHINAPLAS 2022, focusing on green topics such as carbon neutrality and sustainable development.
Plastics Recycling & Circular Economy Conference: Inspiring Green Ideas
What are the macro trends in the global circular economy? What are the hot topics and technologies? By attending the 3rd CHINAPLAS x CPRJ Plastics Recycling and Circular Economy Conference and Showcase, to be held one day prior to CHINAPLAS 2022 in Shanghai, you can get the answers from the renowned speakers, who are to share their insights on relevant policies and industry trends, as well as the showcase of innovative solutions.
Government officials, representatives from industry organizations, brands, machinery and material suppliers from different countries and regions are invited. They will deliver more than 50 speeches online and offline to 400+ industry elites, of which over 60% are end-product /targeted manufacturers. The conference will outline the landscape and prospect of the plastics recycling industry in Asia and worldwide at large, by focusing on topics such as international trends and latest policies for plastics recycling, successful cases and achievements in recycling experiences and innovative ideas.
Thematic seminars will be held in the conference to facilitate the discussions on carbon neutrality, PCR/PIR renewable plastics, recycled ocean plastics, mono-materials, eco-design/design for recycling, chemical recycling, innovative solutions for plastics recycling, and new technologies for recycled materials. At the same time, world-leading enterprises in the scope of plastics recycling will showcase their latest solutions for new materials, technologies and automation. Experts will also introduce their latest technological achievements and interact with the participants.
Sustainability Resonator: a Chorus of Green Development
A crowd-generating installation art named Sustainability Resonator will be set up at CHINAPLAS 2022. Thousands of speakers participated in the creation of installation with their voices. Every voice cell is unique. When audiences enter the Sustainability Resonator and, the voice stored in each “voice cell” is generated. They can listen to the voices by mobile phone to trigger the resonance by themselves.
Sound waves (sounds) are one of the basic carriers of thoughts. Most communication, knowledge, feelings and ideas find its origin from the transmission of sound. The organizer of CHINAPLAS is collecting voices for environmental protection and sustainable development from all over the world. Through sustainable materials, 3D printing and parametric design, the collected sounds are visually presented as a crowd-generating installation art.
The campaign is initiated by the organizer of CHINAPLAS and Alex Long, a young artist, with the participation of enterprises from the plastics and rubber industries, organizations, academic bodies all over the world. It is designed to disseminate the ideas of “environmental protection, recycling, jointly shaping the future of the plastics industry, additive manufacturing, crossover innovation, biodegradation and sustainable development”
, drawing the attention of whole industry, the whole society and all mankind on plastics recycling technology, environmental protection and sustainable development. Please long press the QR code or click here to make your “voice for sustainable development” heard around the world.
Tech Talk: a Showcase for Green Technologies
“Green” will be seen as a focus of CHINAPLAS 2022 from the topics of Tech Talk. This concurrent event is a series of open forums under 8 themes, including antibacterial solutions, surface treatment solutions, in-mold electronic solutions, 5G applications, eco-friendly solutions, lightweight solutions, innovative materials, of which the last three are more relevant to the green technologies and development.
Leading enterprises from the plastics and rubber industries will participate in the event. Gunagdong Guangshan New Material Co., Ltd. will deliver a speech on flame retardant development ideas in the context of the dual-carbon goals/the plastic bag ban; Ningbo Topcentral New Material Co., Ltd. will explore the innovation and application of zero-carbon, customized and comprehensive PCR materials as well as future opportunities; Cathay Biotech Inc. will show its thermoplastic high-temperature-resistant bio-based polyamide engineering plastic products and green lightweight materials; KRAIBURG TPE (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. will share how new low-density TPE helps customers to achieve the goal of product weight reduction; Wanhua Chemical Group Co., Ltd. will launch a thermal management system for new energy vehicles; DuPont China Holding Co., Ltd. will introduce its comprehensive vehicle electrification solution.
In this edition, Tech Talk will incorporate the previous Medical Plastics Forum under the theme of “Medical Plastics”, which focuses on the sustainable development of medical plastics in particular. Beijing Tiangang Auxiliary Co., Ltd. will discuss the development of targeted anti-mildew, anti-algae and antibacterial masterbatch and its application in polymer materials; KRAIBURG TPE (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. will talk about THERMOLAST® H, a new range of TPE designed exclusively for healthcare and medical devices in the Asia Pacific.
CHINAPLAS has become a product debut platform for the plastics and rubber industries, where exhibitors launch a wide range of new products. Tech Talk is the annual stage for the plastics and rubber industries, to bring the spotlight to the new and edge-cutting products, helping new technological products to gain more exposure while visitors can get quick access to the resources of quality suppliers.
Under the theme of “New Era· New Potential· Innovation for Sustainability”, CHINAPLAS 2022 will proudly return to the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Hongqiao, Shanghai, during April 25 – 28, 2022. For more information, please visit www.ChinaplasOnline.com.
About CHINAPLAS 2022
CHINAPLAS 2022 is organized by Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd., Beijing Yazhan Exhibition Services Ltd., Adsale Exhibition Services (Shanghai) Ltd., Adsale Exhibition Services (Shenzhen) Ltd. and co-organized by China National Light Industry Council – China Plastics Processing Industry Association, China Plastics Machinery Industry Association, Messe Düsseldorf China Ltd. and the Plastic Trade Association of Shanghai. The event is also supported by various plastics and rubber associations in China and abroad.
First introduced in 1983, CHINAPLAS has been approved by UFI (The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry) since 2006. CHINAPLAS is exclusively sponsored by the Europe’s Association for Plastics and Rubber Machinery Manufacturers (EUROMAP) in China for the 32nd time. CHINAPLAS is currently Asia’s leading plastics and rubber trade fair.
150,000+ Visitors Joined the Journey of Innovative Plastics & Rubber Tech
On April 16, Chinplas 2021, the first post-pandemic international trade fair for the plastics and rubber industries, has come to an end in the Greater Bay Area. It was the first time that Chinplas was held at Shenzhen, PR China, and the result was remarkable! With an exhibition area of over 350,000sqm, Chinplas 2021 attracted the participation of 3,576 leading exhibitors from 41 countries and regions, and 152,134 professional visitors from 85 countries and regions! Amongst the visitors, 2,363 were from Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan and overseas.
“Both exhibitors and visitors were satisfied with the outcome of the event! This is a year full of uncertainties and challenges. Grateful that we have achieved such a satisfactory result through the collaborative efforts of all supporting parties!” said Ms. Ada Leung, General Manager of Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd., organizer of Chinplas.
“China’s economy continuous to see a robust recovery, with the first quarter’s GDP increased by 18.3% comparing to the same quarter of last year. Under the effective pandemic prevention and control measures together with the speeding up of the ‘dual circulation’ development, Chinplas achieved success through the unlimited potential of China’s domestic market and the increased demand for high quality innovation technology.”
“Compared with the Guangzhou edition of Chinplastwo years ago, the number of local visitors has increased by 23.46%, exceeding our expectations. The drop in the number of overseas visitors was anticipated, and was sufficiently understood by most exhibitors.”
“To enable the participation of local and overseas buyers who couldn’t join Chinplas in person, we proudly presented live streaming broadcast which has attained nearly 1 million online views! We felt closely the passion of the exhibitors and visitors, the vitality of the plastics and rubber industries, and the enthusiasm of the industry practitioners.”
Assembled a huge amount of cutting-edge technologies
After two consecutive years of technology development and advancement, a significant number of innovative solutions were launched at the fairground, indicating the future advance development of the industries.
With the coming of the “dual carbon” era, “carbon neutrality” related exhibits were put under the spotlight. A large number of solutions for efficient production, energy-saving and emission reduction, biodegradable plastics, bio-based plastics, recycling technologies, etc., were the focuses of visitors at Chinplas. Single-material solutions and post-consumption recycling (PCR) technologies in the packaging sector were also gaining momentum. There are growing demand for LCP for 5G application, low dielectric PP, PC modified materials, electroplatable PPS, etc.. Consumption upgrade inspires innovation; automotive lightweight materials and techniques together with smart surface decoration processes, such as IMD & IML and high sensory materials applying to AI cockpits were hot at Chnplas. With regards to COVID-19, there is a rise in health awareness, which speeds up the advancement of medical technology. The new generation of cold chain packaging materials for vaccine, PEEK, COC materials, antibacterial and antiviral nylon 66 and melt blown materials to meet evolving needs were popular during the show.
In the machinery halls of the fairground, visitors were able to see plenty of impressive machine demonstrations, such as high-speed printing machines, ultra-high-speed thin-wall packaging machines, data management for intelligent injection molding factory and remote control enhancing the production automation production, etc..
Innovation never stops. Transformation has no limit. Plastics is widely introduced to various downstream application industries, including electronics & electric, automotive, packaging, building materials, medical, sports and leisure etc., shaping a better and more sustainable future for humanity.
Outstanding results won praises from both exhibitors and visitors
Due to the pandemic, exhibitors and visitors reunited after two years since the last edition of Chinplas held in Guangzhou in 2019, making this “face-to-face” large-scale event even more precious for all participants. People in the industries learnt, explored, inspired and improved here. Visitors not merely broadened their horizons and refreshed their knowledge, but also discovered resources & technologies and expanded business network. Many exhibitors signed new orders with visitors at the fairground. Exhibitors and visitors are generally satisfied with Chinplas
Ms. Zhao Xuemei, Brand Manager, Guangdong Yizumi Precision Machinery Co., Ltd., “The Yizumi booth was immensely popular throughout the 4 show days. This surprised us a lot! We believe this fully demonstrated the strong industry influence and charisma of Chinplas. Even in difficult times, the organizer still adheres to their original motive for promoting the development of the industries, to provide exhibitors with a platform to present the latest technological achievements and to facilitate industry exchanges.”
Ms. Wang Huaqian from Nordmeccanica Machinery (Shanghai) Co., Ltd., “Despite reduction in the number of overseas visitors as compared to previous years due to the pandemic, local visitors came with clear targets and objectives. We have received just as many inquiries and orders at Chinplas as in previous years. Both the pre-show organization and the post-show results were very satisfactory.”
Ms. Eve Cai, China Marketing Manager of HP Indigo Digital Printing Division of China Hewlett-Packard Co., Ltd. said, “From online orders to workflow automation, from environmentally friendly materials to successful business model demonstrations to customers, HP Indigo and our partners together with some successful customers have showcased end-to-end solutions for digital flexible packaging. Meanwhile, we also connected to the Singapore demonstration center for cloud-based equipment presentation. The sharing from HP Indigo customers and partners has attracted great attention from potential customers; seemingly received an endless flow of visitors.”
Ms. Jessica Chen, Marketing & Communications Director, Amcor (China) Holding Co., Ltd., “Not only a large number of upstream suppliers like us, but also a great amount of active participations from the downstream brand owners and their teams have participated in Chinplas. As far as for Amcor, Chinplas is not merely a good opportunity to showcase products, but also an excellent platform to enhance upstream and downstream communications in the flexible plastic packaging industry. From the total numbers of visitors and exhibitors, we can recognize that China’s economy remains strong in the post-pandemic era, serving as a ‘booster’ for many multinational companies to continue exploring business opportunities in China and invest into the Chinese market.”
Mr. Reus Wang, Marketing Manager of Wanhua Chemical Group Co., Ltd., “Although number of overseas visitors has dropped sharply due to the pandemic, the quantity of local visitors has significantly increased and reached a record high. Material solutions are evolving and enhancing, advancements in the automotive lightweighting and degradable plastics fields are apparent! In addition to the promotion of environmental protection policies, how to thoroughly achieve ‘emission peak’ and ‘carbon neutrality’ are adequately worthy of our further exploration.”
Mr. Gerhard Böhm, Managing Director of Sales and Service, Arburg said, “The Chinplas trade fair was a great success for us. The number of visitors to our booth was consistently high! They came to us with specific projects and presented us with their task parameters, all are very interesting and with great future potential.”
Not only exhibitors showed their appreciation
, visitors were also impressed by the fruitful trips.
Mr. Lin Conglong, Senior Engineer of Fuyao Group, “I bask in different achievements every time I visit Chinplas Chinplas 2021 makes me even more impressed. As an automotive manufacturing related company, I am able to find materials and equipment of the era at Chinplas, for instances, carbon fiber, continuous fiber, etc. which can achieve materials lightweight; environmentally friendly materials such as low VOCs materials, pray-free, two-platen machine and bi-colour machine, etc.. The understanding of existing technology and development trends allows our company to enhance independent research and development capabilities. Thanks to Chinplas for providing an accessible, efficient communication platform that leads everyone to shape the future together and catch up with our dreams.”
Mr. Wen Chunli, Equipment Department Manager of Shenzhen Chuangwei – RGB Electronics Co., Ltd., “We look for HIPS/PC/ABS and other raw materials, as well as injection molding machines, material-feeding machines, robotic arm, mold temperature machines, shredders, central feeding systems and other equipment. Steam-heated injection molding, gas-assisted injection molding, foam molding and water-aided injection molding are all at the forefront of the industries. Here at Chinplas, we can fully understand the market trends and products, which provide a good reference and guidance for our equipment selections.”
Fang Liuying, Vice General Manager, Southern Packaging Co., Ltd., “Chinplas 2021 totally demonstrated the technical strength of China’s intelligent manufacturing. Industry 4.0 digital production and 5G technology industrial applications enabled the realization of unmanned factories and remote control. Whereas, green and recycling closed-loop technology has become more and more mature, supporting the national environmental protection development. On the other hand, technological breakthroughs in the medical and health industry have created new growth points for the company. These technologies have refreshed us and opened up a new direction for the development of packaging companies!”
Mr. Zhang Baofeng, Vice President Assistant of China Lesso Group Holdings Ltd., “At Chinplas, we visited a lot of advanced injection molding machines, extruders and other equipment and materials, which will greatly improve our product quality and production efficiency.”
Mr. Emil Lau, Manager of Tooling & Technology Group of Philips Respironics Medical Products (SZ) Co., Ltd., “This visit is purely out of my expectation. I did not expect that there were so many exhibitors, especially with materials that we were interested in, e.g. liquid silicone molds, injection molding machines and feeding system. It is absolutely brilliant to be able to collect all of the relevant information at one go! Chinplas eally takes the lead in driving the development of the plastics and rubber industries!”
The official live streaming of CHINAPLAS also received plenty favorable comments from our visitors. Many online visitors reckoned that watching live streaming helped them understand industry trends & innovative application areas and obtained a wealth of new product information. The official live streaming platform has received nearly 1 million views from Pakistan, India, the United States, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia and other countries and regions. If you would like to review the interviews of big-name exhibitors, displays of cutting-edge technology exhibits and expert guided tours, you can simply click here or scan the QR code below to watch the live streaming..
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