|Q. Evolution of WPC in India?|
A. WPC as a product has evolved passionately within last 3 Years. WPC as a panel product is very well accepted by Indian market. Wpc is an official product segment today and there are good manufacturers in the country now.
|Q. No. of plants (installed and coming) in India, and market size.|
A. There are 35 WPC board lines and14 WPC profile lines, which is merely 2% of the total wood panel manufacturing of India.
|Q. How do you see the future of this product in India? Pls give the reasons.|
A. Very strong of course! This is a product as an investment, not an expense. India is a market where wood panels are in demand today and going to be in demand, untill we reach to a level of other developed countries of the world. Thus in panel category WPC panels would play as a major product in future.
|Q. Why should a dealer sell this product?|
A. If he is a dealer for wood panels and allied products than he has ready market for WPC products now.
|Q. Application area and advantages of WPC.|
A. WPC can be used in all modular furniture products e.g. Doors, kitchen carcass, wardrobe shutters, bathroom vanities, partitions and more.
|Q. There is lack of awareness in India as well as no govt authorized certification. What is your opinion?|
A. Awareness is quite there now and manufacturers have started enjoying supply crisis because of consistently increasing demand. Still I strongly insist for professional marketing, advertising and branding practices from WPC players. There should be carpenter training programs by companies, educating them about product advantages and fast assemblies.
|Q. Presently, who is driving this product in India? and what is your suggestion to specifiers and users?|
A. Overall all the players are driving WPC potentially and I would term it as a cooperative effort!
|The research has great relevance given that disposal of plastic waste by way of landfills induces environmental and space problems while incineration leads to air pollution and aggravation of global warming|
By Bonnie James/Deputy News Editor/Gulf Times
In a development that could substantially improve the quality of recycled plastics, Qatar University’s Centre for Advanced Materials (CAM) has made progress in research to produce recycled polymer composites which are cheaper than pure synthetic fibre composites and have superior properties.
“Date palm wood flour and date palm leaf fibre, abundantly available as agro-waste material in Qatar, were added to produce recycled polymer composites which could be utilised for a wide range of applications in different fields,” post doctoral researcher Dr Noorunnisa Khanam Patan told Gulf Times.
Glass fibre and mica were also used as reinforcements with recycled polymers in the research programme being conducted under the supervision of associate professor and CAM director Dr Mariam al-Ali al-Ma’adeed.
“The objective is to use recycled polymers as a matrix to reduce environmental pollution, considering that Qatar produces a large quantity of polyethylene plastics and substantial amounts of plastic wastes are available as municipal solid wastes,” Dr Patan explained.
The research has great relevance given that disposal of plastic waste by way of landfills induces environmental and space problems while incineration leads to air pollution and aggravation of global warming.
“Over the past few decades, polymers, due to the ease of processing, better productivity and cost reduction have replaced many of the conventional materials such as metals, wood and ceramics in various applications,” she pointed out.
Polymer is a macromolecule, made up of many small molecules which have combined to form a single long or large molecule. The individual small molecules from which a polymer is formed are known as monomers and the process by which they are linked to form a big polymer molecule is called polymerisation.
There are natural and synthetic polymers. Natural polymers are those isolated from materials such as cotton, wool, leather, silk, and cellulose rayon. Synthetic polymers are synthesised from low molecular weight compounds and examples include polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride, and nylon.
Depending upon its ultimate form and use, a polymer can be classified as thermoplastic, thermosetting, plastic, elastomer, fibre and liquid resin. “The combination of conventional polymers with fibre or fillers is an important alternative to obtain new polymeric materials with designed properties to suit the high strength/high modulus requirements, and these are called polymer composites,” Dr Patan said.
A composite is a mechanically separable combination of two or more component materials, different at molecular level, but mixed purposefully to obtain a new material with optimal properties.
Polymer composites are widely used in varied fields, including automotive, sports goods, construction, aerospace, marine, electrical, biomedical applications, and chemical equipment.
There are two types of constituent material: matrix and reinforcement. Thermoplastic, thermosetting matrices are used as the matrix in polymer composites with natural and synthetic fibres as reinforcing materials.
The most common include polyester, vinyl ester, epoxy, phenolic, polyimide, polyamide, polypropylene, and polyether ether ketone.
“The objective of the current research at CAM is to produce recycled polymer composites that incorporate naturally available, environment-friendly plant-based fibre as an alternative reinforcement material, imparting high specific strength and stiffness,” Dr Patan said.
Though recycling helps conserve materials, it is known to change the mechanical, physical and chemical properties of the recycled plastics to some extent, thereby lowering their economic value. This could be overcome by adding suitable plant-based fibres.
“Deforestation and growing environmental concerns were the main driving forces for the launch of wood-plastic composites as a natural wood substitute over two decades ago,” the researcher recalled.
The research at CAM comprised four parts. In the first stage, glass fibre was added to date palm wood flour to improve its mechanical properties.
|Researchers at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland have developed a kitchen furniture framework material from plastic polymers reinforced with natural fibre.|
It is claimed that the new material, a possible alternative to chipboard, reduces raw material consumption by 25–30 per cent and the carbon footprint of production by 35–45 per cent.
In a statement, VTT’s research professor, Ali Harlin, said: ‘The frames are lighter by nearly a third because they contain more air. Wastage during production is also reduced. This is a generational shift that revolutionises both manufacturing techniques and design.’
According to Harlin, the framework for the kitchen of the future will be compression moulded or extruded. The result is a component of exact dimensions, which does not need to be cut or drilled after production.
The natural fibre reinforcement in biocomposites can be sawdust, pulp, flax, hemp or peat. The new material is also claimed to be significantly stronger than chipboard and has excellent moisture resistance.
VTT has developed this new material in co-operation with Finnish kitchen fitments maker Puustelli.
Harlin believes that furniture companies will be attracted to the new production technique because it will enable them to save on production and transport costs. Furthermore, Harlin said that investments in new machinery will pay for themselves in a few years.
Industrial designer Juhani Salovaara, designer of the Puustelli composite kitchen, said that the starting point for the design was to achieve the smallest environmental impact and the largest degree of domestic origin possible.
The composites used in Puustelli kitchens are manufactured by Finnish forest industry enterprise UPM. According to Salovaara, the degree of domestic origin of biocomposite furniture frames is in the region of 90 per cent. The material’s breaking strength and moisture resistance are claimed to be excellent. It is also significant for the end user that the furniture’s formaldehyde discharge is diminished.
Harlin thinks it is likely that the innovation will also be of interest outside Finland as some European furniture makers have tried composites, but their production techniques are based on traditional cutting.
According to Harlin, VTT will continue developing biocomposites and charting new applications for them.
‘One point of interest lies in whether biocomposites could be used in cars and other vehicles. In that field, weight is money even more than in furniture.’
|Optimism at recent “Fourth German WPC” congress / Double-digit growth rates / US still world's largest WPC producer / China set to dominate the global market by 2015|
|Almost 300 participants from 21 different countries attended last year’s “Fourth German Wood Plastic Composite” Congress, held on 13 and 14 December 2011 in Cologne / Germany. The mood among them was upbeat, according to organiser nova-Institut (Hürth / Germany; www.nova-institut.de) – a fact that is not surprising considering that the European WPC market has been growing at an average rate of 35% per year since 2005. What’s more, the industry does not expect this impressive track record to slow in the future, banking on ongoing two-figure growth.
All in all, about 220,000 t/y of WPC were produced in Europe in 2010, about 100,000 t/y of which were manufactured in Germany alone. Most of this output also went towards the European market, with about 50,000 t assigned to the automotive sector, where WPC is mostly used in compression moulding, while another 167,000 t – the vast majority – was earmarked for terrace flooring, fencing and cladding. According to nova-Institut, in Germany alone, WPC decking commands a market share of about 15%. WPC also increasingly is used for furniture, office and home utensils as well as smaller technical parts and casings, although this share remains rather small, estimated at less than 5,000 t in 2010.
Future growth will in part be driven by the rise in traditional plastics prices, nova Institut predicts, saying that “it is only a matter of a few years before WPC pellets are cheaper than pure plastic pellets”. At present, WPC – made up of 20-80% bio-based material – is about 20-30% more expensive than traditional resin.
|Future growth driven by US, China
The industry’s optimism is anything but surprising if one turns the gaze beyond Europe, specifically to the US and China. With a production volume of 1.5m t/y, the US remains the world’s largest WPC producer. However, nova Institut points out, this growth has slowed in recent years amid numerous quality complaints that have seen a number of American WPC producers taken to court. Partly as a result of such legal action, the number of North American WPC producers has dropped from 27 to 16. Yet, in parallel to this contraction, output quality has also once again improved, with North American WPC output now on a par with European standards, fixed by the Association of the German Wood-based Panel Industries (www.vhi.de).
Another promising growth market is China, where some 700,000 t/y of WPC were produced in 2010. That output is expected to rise to an impressive 5m t/y by 2015, which – according to nova Institut – would make China the world’s largest WPC producer. Domestic wood plastic composite producers number about 300, who mostly use wood flour or lignocellulose-rich crop residues, including rice straw and husks, as raw materials.
|Published: 15 August, 2011|
|Panel producer Sonae is diversifying into the wood-plastic composites industry after signing a licensing deal to commercialise new technology in Europe.
Sonae has signed a licensing deal with New Zealand-based Crown Research Institute Scion to manufacture and sell the latter’s technology, which enables production of wood-plastic composites with long wood fibre reinforcement.
“Our company has been interested in this technology for a few years, and our successful trials with plastic processing operations have given us the confidence to introduce this new material to Europe,” said Christophe Chambonnet, Sonae’s chief marketing and sales officer.
Sonae has named the technology’s product ‘WoodForce’ because of the strength the material combination gives to traditional polymers.
“As one of the world leaders in wood technology, with over 10 million tons of wood processed annually, Sonae Indústria needs to have an important role in the future of the wood sector,” added Mr Chambonnet.
“I have no doubt that we are creating a new future by mixing wood fibres with thermoplastic polymers and a new perspective on the use of the wood fibre.”
Wood plastic ‘pellet’ composites produced by the technology can be fed easily into conventional extruders and injection moulders and processed as bio-based fibre reinforced plastics.”
|Source – Plastemart.com|
|Wood Plastic Composites (WPCs) are defined as composite materials that contain thermoplastics and wood in various forms. Mostly, either the polymer or the fiber, or both, can come from recycled materials. Because of the limited thermal stability of wood, only plastics that can be processed at temperatures below 392 degrees Fahrenheit are used in WPCs. The average product carries about 50% wood, generally in particulate form, such as wood flour or very short fibers. WPCs represent one of the rapidly growing markets within the plastics industry. Double-digit growth is expected through 2011 for WPCs used as replacement for treated wood in building products and related applications. These composites find usage in a wide range of applications in a number of market sectors including:|
|As per a report by Freedonia, demand for wood-plastic composite and plastic lumber is projected to advance about 10% pa through 2011 to US$5.4 bln. These alternative lumber materials are expected to continue to penetrate the building materials market at a rapid pace, particularly in decking applications. Composite and plastic lumber will continue to benefit from their performance characteristics, such as durability, weatherability, low maintenance requirements and low life cycle cost. Demand for composite and plastic lumber will also be driven by increasing consumer and contractor familiarity, a widening distribution network and product improvements that enhance appearance. Furthermore, ongoing interest in “green” building products will bolster use of composite and plastic lumber made with recycled content. Plastic lumber has found significant use in agricultural fencing, molding and trim applications. Solid growth in decking, fencing and other end uses such as site and leisure furniture will continue to support demand going forward. However, WPC lumber will see much faster growth through 2011, posting gains of 14.3% pa to reach US$2.6 bln. Composite lumber demand will be fueled by strong demand in decking applications. In addition, rapid growth in windows and door applications, as well as smaller niche end uses (porches, site and leisure furniture) will support demand going forward. Among the major product categories window and door applications for WPCs are anticipated to post the most rapid gains through 2011 (albeit from a small base). As with other applications, WPC window and door components are making inroads because of their lower maintenance requirements, durability in exterior applications and similarities to wood. Decking applications are projected to see strong gains through 2011, continuing to increase its relative share of the composite and plastic lumber industry. By 2011, decking will be the largest end use for these alternative building materials, accounting for 44% of demand. Molding and trim will remain a key market for composite and plastic lumber, but will exhibit below-average growth through 2011. Increasing market maturity in the plastic lumber segment will limit growth, as will a weak new housing environment going forward. Fencing applications will see below-average gains through 2011, due to increasing market maturity in the plastic lumber segment. All other applications are projected to see rapid growth over the forecast period from small bases. Playground equipment and site and leisure furniture applications are expected to register strong gains through 2011, driven by the environmentally friendly profile of composite and plastic lumber, as well as their performance and maintenance characteristics. The US wood-plastic composite and plastic lumber industry is highly fragmented, consisting of hundreds of companies ranging from small, regional producers to large, national concerns. Manufacturers typically specialize in one type of material, although some companies offer both composite and plastic lumber. In 2006, the leading composite and plastic lumber firms were Louisiana- Pacific, Royal Group Technologies, Tapco International and Trex. US Wood-Plastic Composite & Plastic Lumber Demand (US$3.4 bln, 2006)|
| Molding & Trim 39%
Windows & Doors 4%
Other Applications 6%
|Polyethylene (PE) is most commonly used in exterior applications and Polypropylene (PP) for automotive and consumer applications. The total market for WPC products in the two key market sectors in USA was estimated to exceed US$350 mln in 2001 with predictions to grow. WPC is already an established material in the USA particularly for garden decking and non-structural building applications, such as exterior window and door profiles. The combined value of the North American and Western European WPC markets was US$775 mln in 2002, with demand reaching 1.5 bln lbs. WPCs are projected to grow by 14% pa in North America and by 18% pa in Western Europe through 2010, according to a study by Principia Partners LLC. The North American market for WPCs accounted for over 85% of the combined North American and Western European demand in 2002. Building products represent the largest segment in the North America WPC market, accounting for more than 80% of consumption. In these applications, WPCs are used in decking and railing systems, window and door profiles and shingles. Infrastructure application was the second largest segment, at over 125 mln lbs. Primary applications in this segment are for boardwalks, docks and related structures.|
|As per another report by Freedonia, although demand for wood decking in the US is projected to advance less than 1% pa through 2013, demand for alternative decking will grow nearly 10% pa. Demand for wood-plastic composite decking is forecast to rise 9.5% pa to 700 million lineal feet, while demand for plastic and other decking is projected to advance 9.7% pa to 135 million lineal feet in 2013. Overall, demand for decking will reach 3.6 billion lineal feet, valued at US$5.2 bln. Consumers will be attracted to alternative decking materials because of their long lifespans, minimal maintenance requirements, and imperviousness to degradation caused by general wear and tear and long-term exposure to moisture. In addition to its performance characteristics, gains in demand for composite decking will be encouraged by its close resemblance to natural wood, its ability to be cut like wood decking, and the perception that it is an environmentally friendly material, due to the use of reclaimed plastics in its production. Advances in demand for plastic decking will be driven by the high durability of this product, making it ideal for use in public parks, commercial spaces, and such facilities as dockyards and marinas. Wood decking will continue to account for the majority of decking demand in volume and value terms. Demand for wood decking is forecast to rise less than 1% pa to 2.8 bln lineal feet in 2013. Advances will be restrained by heavy competition from other materials, although increasing consumer interest in tropical hardwoods will offer some bright spots. The residential market, which accounted for 61% of total decking demand in 2008, will continue to account for the majority of decking demand through 2013, posting 2.6% annual growth rates. Advances will be boosted by consumers adding amenities to their existing decks, such as outdoor kitchens, spas and hot tubs, and areas for other activities. Not only do these larger decks require deck boards, but many homeowners will install additional railings and other accessories to separate areas of the deck, in order to enhance the safety of their decks by preventing falls by small children or older adults. Further gains will be derived from an expected recovery in new housing construction from the low level in 2008.|
|Published on August 9, 2011 at 3:05 AM|
|By Cameron Chai|
|companiesandmarkets.com has added a comprehensive report on the global wood-plastic composites market titled, ‘Wood-Plastic Composites: Technologies and Global Markets’ to its list of offerings.
According to the report, the value of wood-plastic composites market including cellulosic plastics and natural fiber composites reached 2.4 Mt in 2011 and it will reach 4.6 Mt in 2016 when it grows at a rate of 13.8% per year. The report not only covers all cellulosic-plastic combinations with each other but with other plastic materials that could be utilized as a replacement for wood materials in the building and construction industry. The report analyzes the plastic-wood composite marketplace in detail with both historic and forecast information for a period between 2008 and 2016.
The report includes the profiles of major companies in the market. It also discusses the technologies, strategies, manufacturing processes, product testing, distribution, additive utilization, production costs, pricing and regulations of the industry. Geographic segments of the report include Asia, Europe and North America.
The report predicts that automotive and building product segments will be the fastest growing end use segments. The automotive wood-plastic composites market is evidencing a vast growth and would reach a value of 0.8 Mt by 2016 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.1%. The building products market attained a value of 1.78 Mt in 2011 and would attain a value of 3.2 Mt in 2016 at a CAGR of 12.4%.
|David Vink, European Plastics News|
|Germany-based Bayerische Maßindustrie (BMI) is using profiles made by NaturinForm, a wood-plastic composite (WPC) profile producer also based in Germany, for its Polywood spirit level – the first housed in WPC.
BMI said it looked for a material that provide the consistent and smooth surface necessary for the strict measurements for spirit levels - 0.5mm/m for flat positions and 0.75mm/m for rotated positions.
According to NaturinForm design and development manager Bernd Motschenbacher, the company achieved the smooth surface by using a finer wood fibre and a symmetrical profile contour, as well as an enhanced extrusion calibration process. And the cooling of the extruded WPC profile ensures that it does not warp in storage, says Motschenbacher.
The Polywood spirit level is made from an insulating, non-conductive WPC material so can withstand exposure to voltages of up to 1,000 volts. It is suitable for use in Zone 1/21 and Zone 2/22 explosion-protection environments, such as in coal mines.
BMI says its Polywood spirit level is warm to touch and resistant to soiling. The company produces the cutouts for the spirit bubbles and says there is unrestricted visibility of the horizontal spirit bubble, as there is no separate edge around the recess, as there is in conventional spirit levels.
The Polywood spirit levels are available in lengths of 40cm, 60cm and 80cm. They join a range of spirit levels made by BMI that also include models housed in ABS for smaller mini and pocket models and glass fibre reinforced ABS for a torpedo-shaped spirit level, as well as standard aluminium versions up to 100cm.
NaturinForm was founded by its managing partner Horst Walther, who invested €1m in the former Poly-Pro-Tec (PPT) company’s WPC production facilities and product diversification in 2009, bringing PPT out of insolvency.
Aside from spirit levels, BMI products also include ABS, glass fibre reinforced ABS or PA, PVC, metal and wooden extending rulers, as well as retracting tape measures enclosed in ABS and two-component ABS/elastomer soft-touch housings.
|Hardik Panchal for Wood News, India.|
|WPC - Wood Plastic Composite – a promising and sustainable green material is being evolved as a fundamental product for India, after being well adopted by the world.
India, a country is having vivid climate conditions, vivid culture, vivid growth patterns and booming infrastructure industry today. Increasing industrial growth is empowering entire India by covering four of its extreme corners, geographically. Increasing human potential is being supported by fascinating employment and business opportunities pan India.
Demand is rapidly increasing for interior and exterior grade materials in building material industry. Modular kitchen are in high demand today, parallel to modular office and home furniture. Timber import is increasing day by day and lot of waste is also being generated in volumes. This waste is coming out of saw mills, plywood mills, veneer units, Particleboard units, MDF units as well as from good quality agriculture residues like Cotton stalks, Sugarcane bagasse, Coir fibers and even Rice husk.
Wood panels are tested and tried to be made out of agriculture residues other than bagasse. At certain level success is achieved but not really promising, thus, question for ‘effective utilization pattern’ of good quality agro residues is still remain. At the same time demand for environmentally appropriate technology is increasing which can really reduce consumption of natural wood. Wood panel technology demands for efficient fiber conversion techniques that can drastically reduce fiber wastage.
WPC, Wood plastic composite, a product with a class, can help meeting global demand of wood products and wood panels. It is a new kind of synthetic material made from waste plastic & wood discharged from mills & factories as well as agriculture residues. It is a natural fit with primary and secondary forest product industries. By construction this product is formulated from - plant fibers as fillers and reinforcements - for polymers. This is one of the fastest growing types of polymer additive.
WPC can replace many direct materials like Solid/Natural wood, Plywood, MDF boards, Particle boards, Steel in various applications. Finished Products can be made out with Wood plastic Composite is classified as follows:
|WPC product characteristics|
|WPC does not decay internally, rot or propagate mold. It can be cut, drilled, nailed and sanded like normal wood. All these processing can be done with standard tools. WPC flooring, lumber, cladding can be directly used untreated. WPC production is a 100% safe manufacturing practice having no process waste of materials, as production waste can be easily ground up and processed into top quality product again.
This is highly water resistant and resistant to bacteria & insects such as Termite & fungus. Importantly, it can be easily shaped using heat and can be shaped through molds & extrusion technology. Extruded WPC is a highly eco-friendly product & versatile building material to be used for interior and exterior applications.
WPC MDF boards can be processed with all panel processing machines like CNC router, Panel saw, Beam saw, Vacuum press, Edge benders, Multi boring and other machines. Absolute moisture resistant property gives biggest advantage of using this product into Modular Kitchen making. A versatile application of Thin MDF for back supports and closures of Modular furniture is very well served with WPC MDF.
WPC Doors is fine quality product with uniform polymer structure and can be used for CNC routing for precise and accurate surface engraving. WPC doors cover total application area of one home taking from Main door to bathroom doors.
WPC Flooring is a sturdy product and can be used on high water usage areas like swimming pools, gardens, walkways. Same product can be used for bungalows, apartments and offices for exterior and interior surface coverings.
WPC planks can be used as a perfect replacement of natural wood for making customized product with carpentry skills.
This is a green product and can be made out of wood waste and agriculture waste mixed with Virgin grade and recycled grade thermoplastic materials.
|Posted on November 23, 2011 by admin|
|Wood-plastic composites (WPC) profiles manufacturers Extruwood GmbH has developed a new PVC-based wood-plastic profiles. This product can be used to replace the wooden window frames on the aluminum edge, especially not solid wood supporting frame.
Headquartered in Austria Pasching of Extruwood company said that in addition to the protection of the bottom of the wooden frame to form outside, Extruwood-Cap profile in the insulation effect is better than ordinary aluminum sealed wooden frame. In addition to wood manufacturers can design more slim window frames and / or reduce the thickness of the glass.
Extruwood company’s owner and managing partner SvenWolf that the installation of an ordinary aluminum window frames sealed aluminum seal fits the thickness of the window frame. He said that this will generate the heat on hot spots and cold spots. To eliminate hot spots and cold spots, the usual practice is to increase the thickness of the wooden window frame or embedded in foam insulation.
Extruwood produced Extruwood-Cap profiles using a direct extrusion process, without the use of WPC composite particle materials. In addition to its product line with the common axis of rotation with a conical twin-screw extruder, but also with natural wood fiber drying function.
The company uses a standard downlink out of traction and cutting equipment, the production line with the general wood processing functions, such as drainage channel milling. Profile of its products can be developed using the color WPC, product offerings in the form of powder coating, paint or laminate.
|Join hand with|
for wood plastic composite technology
|Posted 1 May 2012 By Anthony Clark|
Machinery supplier Cincinnati Milacron is gearing up for an expected growth in the European wood plastic composite (WPC) market of around 20% during 2012.
“We are seeing more customers coming to us looking for higher-output machines after realising that their existing plant is just not up to the job,” said Steve Jones, Cincinnati Milacron’s European business manager and WPC processing specialist. “It’s now becoming increasingly apparent that running a basic extruder is just not viable for successful and profitable production of WPCs.
“The company is seeing a significant rise in enquiries for replacement screws and barrels for competitive machines due to screw breakage and excessive barrel wear,” he added. “It is frightening just how many competitors screws are breaking. As the need for more output increases producers are finding their standard extruders and barrel coating technology are not surviving.”