Germany - A wide spectrum of plastics technologies will be presented at Fakuma, the international trade fair for plastics processing in Freidrichshafen. Among these will be the recycling and “green” materials of the plastics markets and lightweight solutions for plastics processing.
Processes for sustainable recycling are growing in demand in a world that is producing too much waste. What actually happens to PE, PS, ABS or PET and CFRP at the end of their initial service life? High-tech materials like CFRP are being recycled ever more often as well as being reused for new purposes. The prevention of so-called “downcycling” with modern processes and recycling of materials sorted according to their type is as such important. Sustainability, however, also means energy-saving and thus more economical manufacturing processes, energy-efficient machines and the use of biodegradable plastics. Certainly reduced materials consumption, recycling and “green materials” are experiencing an upswing throughout the entire sector.
Apart from green plastics and providing solutions, Fakuma 2018 will present all of the components and systems which are required for conventional as well as innovative processes. Be it industries that involve injection moulding, extrusion, thermoforming, foaming or additive manufacturing/3D printing, raw material producers, machine builders and manufacturers of precision parts will showcase their innovations for the entire process sequence and value chain in Friedrichshafen, Germany from 16-20 October.
In the field of plastics, processing sequences are also being automated extensively. Demand for Industry 4.0-compatible systems and components that permit inline production steps and quality control is growing rapidly. Where handling is supported by modern robotics and software that provides target-versus-actual comparisons in real-time, multi-variant production is becoming more economical in the plastics industry. Beyond this, plastics processing companies are now becoming increasingly globally aligned. A large variety of variants, smaller manufacturing lots, make-to-order production and shorter product lifecycles are presenting manufacturers of plastic parts enormous challenges. This is augmented by individual demands for mixture, density and the processing of the various plastics.
Lightweight design and lightweight materials
Streamlined processing of polyurethane, foam plastics and composite materials are known to offer high product stability and save more than just its weight. In numerous industries including the automotive, furniture manufacturing and space the demand is increasing for lightweight design and lightweight materials including lower material consumption. Lightweight materials save weight and thus reduce production, transport and fuel costs.
Specialised machines and matching tools are required for the processing and production of lightweight materials. Fully automated robots and presses, laminating systems, various types of CNC machining centres and vacuum presses for the production of moulded parts are just a few of the practically-oriented products and solutions to be showcased at Fakuma 2018.
Beyond this, the use of inserts, screw bushings or reinforced expanded metals must already be taken into consideration during toolmaking and mould-making. Suppliers of plastic parts are also required to provide surface finishing so that they’re required to evolve into full-service suppliers.
Expert visitors, specialists and decision-makers from over 120 countries came to the last Fakuma in 2017. The 2018 edition expects more than 1,800 technology leaders to present their international offerings, show organiser P.E.Schall says.