There is little room for error when designing plastic parts for critical-use applications. Anything that could stand in the way of uncompromised performance or end-user safety is unacceptable; there’s too much at risk given the potential for significant issues surrounding recalls, warranty claims, property damage and personal injury. And, no company can afford to lose customer trust.
We all know that carbon dioxide (CO2) — a greenhouse gas emitted into the atmosphere through the burning of fossil fuels — is a major culprit in environmental degradation.
Companies had tried unsuccessfully for years to find a cost-effective way to incorporate CO2 into plastic in order to minimize dependence on fossil fuels and substantially decrease greenhouse gases. Recently, however, several plastics manufacturers discovered that using a copper catalyst could be the solution.
Thousands of medical industry professionals, thought leaders and suppliers met in Minnesota October 31-November 1 at Medical Design & Manufacturing (MD&M) Minneapolis 2018 — the midwest’s largest medical technology trade show.
As both an exhibitor and guest at MD&M, the Kaysun team learned a lot about what’s currently happening and evolving in the medical industry. Here are three of the most talked-about trends:
Maintaining tight tolerances is a top priority for many complex injection molded parts and components. Understanding the nuances of resins and how they impact tight tolerances and overall product performance can be complicated. It's essential that an injection molder's engineers be looped into the project early — ideally in the design phase — to weigh in on resin selection. Otherwise, certain material characteristics that could affect tight tolerances and, ultimately, influence outcomes may be inadvertently overlooked.
Not taking the time to properly determine shrink rate can have a big impact on the quality of an injection molded part's geometry, performance, and appearance.
To facilitate this calculation, materials suppliers typically provide shrink rate numbers based on ASTM Standard D955 and a .125-inch thick plaque with a specific gating size and location. Although a good place to start, this value is usually not accurate enough for many products, especially critical, highly complex parts.
Medical Design & Manufacturing (MD&M) Minneapolis — the midwest’s largest medical technology trade show — is slated for October 31-November 1, 2018 at the Minneapolis Convention Center, and it’s a can’t miss event for anyone involved in the design, manufacture or distribution of medical devices and components.
Not surprisingly, the medical industry in the United States is one of the most heavily regulated. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) has a strict protocol around medical device tracking, particularly Class II and Class III devices that are intended for life support away from a primary care facility or whose failure would likely cause serious adverse health consequences.
Cooling is one of the most critical parts of the injection molding process. Not only is it the longest part of the process — taking up more than 80 percent of the cycle time — but it's not smart to cut corners when it comes to cooling. In order to achieve precise, tight tolerances, the cooling rate must be carefully controlled — not rushed to completion.
U.S. manufacturing in a variety of industries has gained traction in recent years. Counterbalancing the business uptick many are experiencing, however, is the strain of a workforce in transition.