Apropos K

Technological progress would be inconceivable without modern materials and there is no doubt at all that plastics are among the most versatile materials that exist. It is impossible to imagine the world as we know it without plastics. The “Topic of the Month” highlights issues of particular interest, focussing on plastics in everyday life – including special case studies – and providing historical background information, with in-depth descriptions that are understandable to non-experts too.

Overview: Apropos K

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Rubber protects against unwelcome surprises


Guys: remember to put something on. Rubber as effective protection against unwelcome surprises ... not only during exuberant carnival celebrations.
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Plastics don’t conduct electricity? Nonsense – of course they can!


Plastics don’t conduct electricity? Nonsense! Of course they can! Alan MacDiarmid, one of the men who proved this and were awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry for their achievement in 2000, died ten years ago.
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“Plastic Peter” urges audiences to handle plastic debris carefully


The short film produced in connection with the seas and oceans science year draws people’s attention to marine debris and is now being shown in cinemas with immediate effect.
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Bendable electronic paper displays whole color range


Less than a micrometre thin, bendable and giving all the colours that a regular LED display does, it still needs ten times less energy than a Kindle tablet. Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology have developed the basis for a new electronic "paper". Their results were recently published in the high impact journal Advanced Materials.
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Fibre-reinforced plastics make orthioses lighter and more flexible


Orthioses are sometimes too stiff and can lead to pressure sores. The materials that Dr Markus Brzeski produces at his start-up “A+ Composites” are flexible and lighter while being stronger than steel at the same time. At the Institute for Composite Materials that is part of Kaiserslautern Technical University, he has developed a process that is inexpensive and saves material, with which ...
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Experts who are still at school need your assistance


Never let it be said again that young people nowadays are good for nothing. Nonsense! Anyone who makes generalisations like this is in danger of losing the most talented of teenagers.
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A strong team backstage the K 2016


Let’s talk about the people who work behind the scenes at K 2016 to make sure that the world’s biggest trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry really does turn out to be what everyone involved hopes to experience: a mega-highlight that remains a positive memory to one and all long after it is over and creates high expectations for K 2019. After all: when one K ends, the next one begins!
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Solvent-free processing and re-processing plastics with light


Azobenzene polymers, currently used in research as potential, future coating and ink material, can be transitioned from solids into liquids by means of light enabling an environmentally friendly processing at room temperature. Since the cis and trans configurations of these plastics possess different thermal properties, polymers with the latter chemical structure have sufficient ...
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Plastics make careers


Polymer materials are quite simply unrivalled when it comes to innovative power. But although the material might be the central focus of this development, the successes are made by the people who know how to get the best out of plastics and rubber.
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Rock solid: Carbon-reinforced concrete from Augsburg


Chemists at the University of Augsburg have discovered how to manufacture an extremely strong cement at reasonable cost through use of aligned short carbon fibres.
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