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ANTEC co-located with NPE2018

Tue, Apr 17, 2018

The Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE), Bethel, Conn., a plastics industry association representing 22,500 plastics professionals from business, academia and government, will hold its Annual Technical Conference (ANTEC) May 7-10 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, co-located with NPE2018.

The conference, which SPE says is the world’s largest plastics technical conference, connects classroom theory with real-world solutions, events manager Scott Marko said. The theme this year is “Today’s Ideas at ANTEC are Tomorrow’s Innovations in Plastics.”

A pillar of ANTEC will be the presentations that detail the latest developments in machinery for blow molding, extrusion, injection molding, rotational molding, reaction injection molding and thermoforming. There also will be presentations regarding developments in additive manufacturing, joining of plastics and composites, flexible packaging, decorating, assembly and product design and development.

The proceedings include more than 550 technical presentations and 60-plus marketing presentations, new technology forums, plenary speakers and panel discussions. SPE members also will be honored for outstanding contributions to the fields of plastics engineering, science and technology, or in the management of such activities. Selected industry leaders will be honored with awards during SPE’s Plastics Hall of Fame awards gala and induction ceremony. The event also will include the “Plastics for Life” global parts competition.

Experts will present innovations for key end markets, including automotive, medical, electrical, electronics and pipe. They also will present developments in materials and additives, including alloys, blends, applied rheology, composites, TPEs, foams, thermosets, modifiers and PVC. Marko said authors of presentation papers also will discuss 32 topics at ANTEC, including advanced energy; failure analysis and prevention; plastics in building and construction; polymer analysis; product design and development; and sustainability.

A technology forum is planned each day from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Each forum will feature several talks by industry leaders followed by a panel discussion. The first day’s forum is “4D Printing and Stimuli Responsive Materials.” Speakers will share their work on the ties between processing, properties and performance of advanced polymeric materials such as shape-memory polymers, liquid-crystalline elastomers and hydrogels with the ability to respond to temperature, light or hydration.

The May 8 technology forum, entitled “Wearable Electronics,” acknowledges that wearable electronics are becoming a fact rather than science fiction with the advent of flexible circuitry, sensors and actuators that transform clothing and footwear. Many of these advances are possible because of polymeric materials with piezoelectric, thermally conductive and semi-conductive properties. In this session, the talks and panel discussion will explore the preparation, properties, opportunities and challenges that wearable electronics present.

“Safety and Sustainability in Construction” is the third day’s technology forum. This session will cover architects’ needs for new, sophisticated materials, efforts to understand the behavior of such materials during fires and a current initiative to include new materials in building codes.

The Plastics for Life global parts competition is in its fifth year.

The global parts competition showcases innovative designs, materials and processes that help make life better, Marko said. The competition will present awards in four categories: protecting life, quality of life, improving life and sustaining life. A People’s Choice award is given to the submission that garners the greatest number of votes from conference attendees. A grand prize winner is selected from the highest-ranked winner from the four “Life” awards.

Each SPE division, section or special interest group can make up to five nominations. Final judging will take place during ANTEC, and awards will be presented during a press conference May 9, Marko said. Parts previously submitted in the Plastics for Life competition are ineligible for this year’s event. Parts are reviewed by a panel of judges consisting of media members, past SPE presidents, SPE fellows and industry experts.

View entry fees and register now at https://www.eiseverywhere.com/ehome/252707/666828/

Registration includes access to the show floor; however, registration for NPE2018 alone does not include access to ANTEC.

For more information, contact Scott Marko at 203-740-5442, smarko@4SPE.ORG. Visit SPE at www.4spe.org.

ANTEC will be in the South Hall of the convention center on the third floor.

The event is designed for engineers, research and development scientists, technicians, technical sales and support personnel, academics, students, managers and plastics professions that can benefit from networking, where they can learn the latest innovations and understand how the trends and new developments relate to their work or company.

Mikell Knights, senior staff reporter