Pack your questions: ANTEC to offers more than 500 presentations at NPE

The Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) ANTEC annual technical conference is also making the move from Chicago to Orlandno, once again running concurrently with the triennial NPE plastics event, with preregistration running ahead of 2009 levels. ANTEC 2012 will offer 550 technical papers in 40 different areas of plastics, including a new non-halogenated flame retardant track, according to Barbara Spain SPE’s online program specialist.

Spain told PlasticsToday that the 550 papers are a combination of podium speeches and interactive/poster presentations, as well as 85 student posters, split between 30 undergrad and 55 graduate, and a combined total of 572 presenters.

The Non-Halogenated Flame Retardants SIG (special interest group) is new to the program this year, according to Spain, who noted that the Plastic Educators Division has “an exciting program this year.” Spain noted that about 30% of the sessions are combined sessions with more than one division/SIG presenting in a joint session. ANTEC registration, after Feb. 29 and onsite, runs $825 for SPE or SPI members, with nonmembers charged $1025. Students with ID pay $125, while speakers and moderators pay $500.

In addition to individual papers focusing on one aspect of one particular process or technology, ANTEC will also give a platform each day for one plenary speaker to offer a broader overview of a market. On Monday, April 2, Frank Doerner, VP materials, processes & structures technologies at Boeing Research & Technology, will present such an outlook in his presentation, “Polymer Composites for Aerospace Applications – Past, Present and Future.” Doerner plans to address the gap between “the development of new technology and its implementation into viable products.”

On Tuesday, Helmut Heinson, managing director sales at German injection molding machinery manufacturer Arburg, will take a holistic, global view to the molding production process in an address entitled, “Competitive Advantages Through Efficient Production
Reducing Unit Costs.” Heinson plans to show how careful consideration of product design, mold technology, machine technology, peripheral technology, process integration, process control, production planning and global differences can help your company be more competitive in what is now a global business.

Christopher Musso, a partner with McKinsey’s Chemicals and Product Development group, will provide Wednesday’s plenary session on “The Path to Successful Commercialization of New Materials.” Musso notes that the successful marketplace launch of new materials is “notoriously difficult,” often taking more than a decade for companies to recover the investments they made during development. Musso plans to “expose the pitfalls of commercialization,” give ways to avoid them, and in the process, shorten new material commercialization time by up to 50%.

In addition to plenary presentations each day, ANTEC will also offer daily Technology Forums, tackling Polymers in Energy and Renewable Energy on Monday, in a group of presentations organized by 3M and Mexico’s Center of Advanced Technology (CIATEQ).

On Tuesday, the Technology Forum focus shifts to Polymer Applications in Health, led by moderators Sadhan C. Jana, Prithu Mukhopadhyay, and Len Czuba, who describe this forum as highlighting “materials and processes that are far from commercialization, but rich in science and novel concepts,” including presentations on drug delivery, resorbable materials, orthopedics, implants, devices, and tissue engineering for grafting and implants.

On Wednesday, Dow Chemical’s Stéphane Costeux and Maggie Baumann of G.H. Associates will lead a forum entitled “Emerging Green Technologies.” One stated goal of this forum is to help promote exchange between industry leaders and academic experts, as those constituencies join with policy makers to address the increasing energy consumption necessary for development of the emerging world and global population growth, while reducing the use of fossil fuels and carbon dioxide emissions.

Student speed interview session

Looking towards the more immediate future of the industry, SPE will also have several student-oriented events as part of ANTEC. These include a Student Awards Luncheon on Wednesday, April 4, as well as a Student Speed Interview Session on the same day. Sponsored by SPE and Gros Executive Recruiters, the interview session will target students ready to enter the workforce or those looking for an internship with leading plastics industry companies.

Along the same lines, SPE will also allow students, recent grads, and young professionals looking to make a career change to ask some questions, in a forum called, “Everything you’ve always wondered about the plastics career field, but didn’t know who to ask.” Also on Wednesday and running from 10-11:00 AM in room S330CD, this discussion will be moderated by SPI 2011-2012 president, Russell Broome.

Panelists will include Jamie Mosberg from Global Recruiters of Wilmington; David Peterson, Direct Recruiters; Tom Galvanek, MRI Chatham Group; Nick Fountas, JLI Boston; and Sarah Tomasetti, Gros Executive Recruiters. Per SPE, “During this panel discussion, experts from the top plastics-recruiting firms will answer these questions and more. All SPE students and professional members are welcome to attend this informative event. Bring your questions and ask the experts.”