Fakuma: Intensive recycling and "green" materials shape the plastics market

The ecologically responsible use of plastics includes the entire processing chain. What happens to PE, PS, ABS or PET and CFRP today when it has reached the end of its first life? Experts from all over the world will see the solutions for this at Fakuma – International Trade Fair for Plastics Processing from October 16 to 20, 2018 in Friedrichshafen.

Processes for sustainable recycling at Fakuma

Recycling and reuse are high on the agenda of plastics processors. Increasingly, even high-tech materials such as CFRP are being recycled and given a new purpose. The important thing here is to prevent so-called “downcycling” through modern processes and single-variety recycling. “For several years now, the plastics industry has been becoming increasingly sustainable,” says Fakuma project manager Annemarie Schur. This applies not only to the recyclable materials cycle, but also, for example, to energy-saving and thus more economical manufacturing processes, energy-efficient machinery and biodegradable plastics. The sustainable alternatives are in no way inferior to their classic predecessors in terms of durability, processing quality and weight savings.

Fakuma shows quality and readiness for innovation

More and more products today are manufactured with the help of plastics or composites. The simultaneously increasing demand for ever higher performance and best quality requires readiness for innovation and new developments. In addition to “green” innovations, Fakuma will also showcase all the components and systems required for both classic and innovative processes. Whether injection molding or extrusion, thermal forming, foaming or 3D printing – in Friedrichshafen, raw material producers, machine builders and manufacturers of technical parts will present what they have to offer in terms of innovations for the entire process and value chain. “For many exhibitors, Fakuma is the practical platform for presenting their innovations to the public for the first time,” adds Annemarie Schur.

Increasing automation and internationality

In the world of plastics, too, processing is becoming increasingly automated. The demand for Industry 4.0-capable systems and components that enable manufacturing steps and quality control inline is growing rapidly. Where modern robotics support handling and software provides target/actual comparisons in real time, variant-rich production in the plastics sector is becoming increasingly economical. In addition, plastics processing companies today are increasingly globally oriented. Variant diversity, smaller quantities and order-driven batch sizes, and shorter product life cycles pose major challenges for manufacturers of plastic parts worldwide. This is evident in the way the plastics processing show fascinates people from all over the world. The last Fakuma 2017 was attended by trade visitors, experts and decision-makers from more than 120 countries.