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SPE Thermoforming Quarterly®

Second Quarter 2022

Conference Review: European Thermoforming

After twice postponing their flagship event and moving the location from Geneva to Vienna, SPE’s European Thermoforming Division celebrated the return of live programming from March 30 to April 1. With more than 250 delegates attending from 30 countries, it was clear that the thirst for knowledge and networking had not been extinguished over the past two years. While about a dozen U.S. delegates were in attendance, the presence of several multinational companies on the stage suggested that, in theory, information about plastics and packaging can flow across the Atlantic without too much trouble. And though M&A activity might have peaked in the current business cycle, the recent spate of consolidation has created larger companies with assets on both sides of the ocean…

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Second Quarter 2022

Simulation of Thermoforming Process for Truck Roof Fairing Applications

Thermoforming is an efficient, very cost-effective, and widely used process to produce large parts in transportation applications. The long-haul truck roof fairing demonstrates the feasibility of replacing traditional materials with thermoplastics to improve aerodynamics and, in turn, cut a truck’s fuel use. Simulation becomes a powerful means for a large part and complex process to arrive at and optimize process conditions. This, in turn, helps to achieve the desired product quality for a given material. The present study describes the results from the use of thermoforming simulation as a tool for optimizing sheet thickness, sheet temperature, and processing conditions to achieve a desired thickness distribution and minimal weight of a truck fairing part without sacrificing its structural performance…

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