Old Wine (Plastic) in New Bottle (Name); And people buying it!

Here is a story about the increasing gap between designers and material corporations; and why some high end plastics are unreachable for the common folks.

The point here that (1) this is not even a novel idea, and more importantly (2) they are not designed for individuals.

Now, if the need is to have super-materials manufactured in your garage, then we can’t blame huge MNCs for not investing in that research. Like we have the DIY movement for everything (yeah, almost everything !), why don’t we do something about it? I’m sure we have lots of material experts and designers out there who can do this.

Now, why this rant? Once I went to the CEO of a plastics giant and proposed a similar idea; a material which can be used at all levels of machine sophistication. I even had the concept and commercial aspects ready. Result: It was deemed nonviable for research, since there are no large customers.

But naming this thing lNSPIRE and people buying it (pun intended)? Sad.

Via Core 77

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About Biodegradability

Here’s a good study regarding biodegradability and sustainable packaging solutions. This study from Inhabitat by Starre Vartan is about biodegradability of takeout-boxes, mostly regarding time taken. The box is followed till 19 days, by when it is almost unrecognisable.

Because I’ve heard mixed messages about the compostability of packaging labelled biodegradable, I figured the only way to figure out what works and what doesn’t is to stop listening to rumors and try them out myself. My first experiment was with a Whole Foods deli container, simply because it was at hand; I shop at the supermarket in both Manhattan and in Darien, CT where the chain has recently opened its newest store.

Here, the study is regarding the gate-grave part of the product; But what about cradle-grave journey, where these are made from natural resources (I don’t think these are recycled; not food grades)… No sustainable solution yet, I think.

Full story here.

Via Inhabitat, Core77

 

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Laser Cut Wooden Lamps : CNC Hedonism

Found at the Boing Boing Bazaar:

WHY ????

It says:

“Curious Customs’ laser cut wooden lamps are attractive and inexpensive. They would fit right in a Pasadena Arts & Crafts bungalow, but they would improve the decor of a gas station lavatory, too.”

Is CNC killing craftmanship and also humbleness with it?

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Composites in Renault’s Wind convertible

Sheet moulding compound (SMC) composites are used for the one-piece lightweight collapsible hardtop roof on Renault’s new Wind convertible, slashing the weight of the folding hard top system by more than half compared with earlier designs. The “rotating” SMC roof, which is made by Webasto-Edscha, weighs just 21.8kg complete with its kinematic mechanical components. This is little more than one quarter of the weight of the convertible roof of the Renault Mégane convertible, which tips the scales at more than 100kg.

Read the full story at European Plastics News.

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Bugatti Veyron gets a Polycarbonate Roof

 

The new Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Grand Sport combines the looks of an open-top roadster with the dynamics and safety of a closed vehicle. This is made possible by a targa top incorporating a transparent panoramic roof, which can be removed in a few simple steps to switch to open-top driving. “To make the roof easy to handle and also reduce its weight significantly, we opted to use Makrolon® in our design. This polycarbonate from Bayer MaterialScience is an established material for the series production of lightweight automotive glazing. We were also keen to benefit from the Leverkusen company’s know-how, which covers all process steps in the manufacture of polycarbonate glazing,” explains Daniel Starmann, glazing project manager in Bugatti’s exterior engineering department.

For more info, go here.

Via Europeanplasticsnews, Bayer Material Science

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