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Current Plastic News and Events, Plastic News Articles.
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Researchers develop new combined process for 3D printing
Chemists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) have developed a way to integrate liquids directly into materials during the 3D printing process. This allows, for example, active medical agents to be incorporated into pharmaceutical products or luminous liquids to be integrated into materials, which allow monitoring of damage. The study was published in ''Advanced Materials Technologies''. (2020-12-16)

Researchers use origami to solve space travel challenge
WSU researchers have used the ancient Japanese art of paper folding to possibly solve a key challenge for outer space travel - how to store and move fuel to rocket engines. The researchers have developed an origami-inspired, folded plastic fuel bladder that doesn't crack at super cold temperatures and could someday be used to store and pump fuel. (2020-12-15)

Losing money causes plastic changes in the brain
Researchers at the HSE Institute for Cognitive Neuroscience have shown experimentally that economic activity can actively change the brain. Signals that predict regular financial losses evoke plastic changes in the cortex. Therefore, these signals are processed by the brain more meticulously, which helps to identify such situations more accurately. The article was published in Scientific Reports. (2020-12-15)

Plastics pose threat to human health
Plastics contain and leach hazardous chemicals, including endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) that threaten human health. An authoritative new report, Plastics, EDCs, & Health, from the Endocrine Society and the IPEN (International Pollutants Elimination Network), presents a summary of international research on the health impacts of EDCs and describes the alarming health effects of widespread contamination from EDCs in plastics. (2020-12-15)

3D printers may be toxic for humans
Several studies that aim to characterize and quantify the release and composition, particle size, and residence time in the indoor environment will be presented in the Exposure and Risk Assessment of 3D Printing and Emerging Materials symposium on December 15, from 12:00-1:30 p.m. ET at the 2020 Society for Risk Analysis virtual Annual Meeting held December 13-17, 2020. (2020-12-15)

Silica the best environmental alternative to plastic microbeads, finds study
Following bans on plastic microbeads in wash-off cosmetics, a new study weighs up the environmental costs of alternatives. (2020-12-14)

Marine pollution: How do plastic additives dilute in water and how risky are they?
New research by scientists from Korea shows that additives in plastic materials deployed or thrown in coastal environments diffuse into the environment at different rates. Their findings demonstrate how assessments of exposure risk based on the composition of the source plastic waste will be inaccurate, because this composition varies as plastics break down and additives dilute into the environment at different rates. A new evaluation method is needed, and these scientists have just the solution! (2020-12-14)

The pesticides in contact with plastics for mulch take longer to degrade
A study within the Diverfarming project analyses the interactions between 38 pesticides and three types of plastic for mulch (2020-12-09)

Weathered microplastic particles, readily internalized by mouse cells, may pose a greater risk than pristine ones
Microplastic particles exposed to freshwater or saltwater environments for several weeks are about 10 times more likely than pristine particles to be absorbed by mouse cells, due to a crust of microorganisms and biomolecules that forms on the particles' surfaces, according to a new study. The results indicate that this crust acts as a biomolecular 'Trojan horse.' (2020-12-09)

New method to label and track nano-particles could improve our understanding of plastic pollution
A ground-breaking method to label and track manufactured nano-plastics could signal a paradigm shift in how we understand and care for environments, finds a new study. (2020-12-08)

Java's protective mangroves smothered by plastic waste
The mangrove forests on Java's north coast are slowly suffocating in plastic waste. The plastic problem in northeast Asia is huge and a growing threat to the region's mangroves; a natural alley against coastal erosion. Based on fieldwork published in Science of the Total Environment, NIOZ researcher Celine van Bijsterveldt shows that restoration of this green protection belt is impossible without better waste management (2020-12-07)

New report details links between widespread ocean pollution and human health risks
The new study ''Human Health and Ocean Pollution'' presents a broad and comprehensive examination of the multiple dangers to human and ecosystem health posed by pollution of the seas. Toxins in the ocean make landfall through the food chain and coastal tides, posing health risks to more than 3 billion humans, according to scientists led by the Centre Scientifique de Monaco and Boston College, with support from the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation. (2020-12-03)

Satellite-tagged bottles show promise for tracking plastic litter through rivers
A new study demonstrates the potential for plastic bottles tagged with tracking devices to deepen our understanding of how plastic pollution moves through rivers. Emily Duncan of the University of Exeter, U.K., and colleagues present this research in the open-access journal PLOS ONE on Dec 2, 2020. (2020-12-02)

'Message in a bottle' tracks plastic pollution
Electronic tags released in the Ganges river show plastic pollution can travel thousands of kilometres in just a few months. (2020-12-02)

Even razor clams on sparsely populated Olympic Coast can't escape plastics, study finds
Portland State University researchers and their collaborators at the Quinault Indian Nation and Oregon State University found microplastics in Pacific razor clams on Washington's sparsely populated Olympic Coast -- proof, they say, that even in more remote regions, coastal organisms can't escape plastic contamination. (2020-11-30)

Sustainable regenerated isotropic wood
A high-performance sustainable regenerated isotropic wood (RGI-wood) is reported, constructed from surface nanocrystallized wood particles (SNWP) by efficient bottom-up strategy. The obtained RGI-wood exceeds the limitation of the anisotropic, inconsistent mechanical properties, and inflammability of natural wood. Mass production of large-sized RGI-wood was achieved, overcoming the rareness of large-sized natural wood. Through this strategy, a series of functional RGI-wood nanocomposites can also be prepared, which show great potential in diverse applications. (2020-11-30)

Plastic contaminants harm sea urchins
Plastics in the ocean can release chemicals that cause deformities in sea urchin larvae, new research shows. (2020-11-30)

Waste fishing gear threatens Ganges wildlife
Waste fishing gear in the River Ganges poses a threat to wildlife including otters, turtles and dolphins, new research shows. (2020-11-25)

Sheep show the contamination by microplastics in the agricultural soils of Murcia
A team from the Diverfarming project has found microplastics in 92% of the faeces of sheep fed in intensive agricultural zones of Murcia that they analysed (2020-11-25)

Miniscule robots of metal and plastic
Researchers at ETH Zurich have developed a technique for manufacturing micrometre-long machines by interlocking multiple materials in a complex way. Such microrobots will one day revolutionize the field of medicine. (2020-11-24)

There are microplastics near the top of Mount Everest too
Researchers analyzing snow and stream samples from the National Geographic and Rolex Perpetual Planet Everest Expedition have found evidence of microplastic pollution on Mount Everest. While the highest concentrations of microplastics were around Base Camp where hikers and trekkers spend the most time, the team also found microplastics as high up as 8,440 meters above sea level, just below the summit. The findings appear November 20 in the journal One Earth. (2020-11-20)

New solvent-based recycling process could cut down on millions of tons of plastic waste
Multilayer plastic materials are ubiquitous in food and medical supply packaging, particularly since layering polymers can give those films specific properties, like heat resistance or oxygen and moisture control. But despite their utility, those ever-present plastics are impossible to recycle using conventional methods. (2020-11-20)

Is zoom increasing the demand for plastic surgery
Patients are seeking plastic surgery in record numbers, citing their appearance on Zoom as a cause. Of particular concern are noses and wrinkles. (2020-11-13)

This tableware made from sugarcane and bamboo breaks down in 60 days
Scientists have designed a set of 'green' tableware made from sugarcane and bamboo that doesn't sacrifice on convenience or functionality and could serve as a potential alternative to plastic cups and other disposable plastic containers, which can take as long as 450 years or require high temperatures to degrade. This non-toxic, eco-friendly material only takes 60 days to break down. This plastic alternative is presented November 12, 2020 in the journal Matter. (2020-11-12)

3D printing -- a 'dusty' business?
3D printers are becoming increasingly popular. They can be used to create a wide variety of three-dimensional objects based on computer templates. For example, depending on the method used, objects can be printed using plastics, synthetic resins, ceramics or metal. The material is applied layer by layer and, in doing so, building the printed object. But what about health risks from the extremely fine particles and volatile chemical substances that might be released and inhaled during printing? (2020-11-12)

New source of lymphatic system leak discovered in children with rare open heart surgery complication
Interventional radiologists with Nemours Children's Health System have identified a new source of abnormal lymphatic flow between the liver and the lungs that may be responsible for some cases of plastic bronchitis. Plastic bronchitis is a rare but serious late complication in patients with congenital heart disease who had Fontan surgery. A report detailing the discovery of this fluid leak, and successful treatment of two cases was published in European Heart Journal. (2020-11-11)

Plasma treatments quickly kill coronavirus on surfaces
Researchers from UCLA believe using plasma could promise a significant breakthrough in the fight against the spread of COVID-19. In Physics of Fluids, modeling conducted showed strains of the coronavirus on surfaces like metal, leather, and plastic were killed in as little as 30 seconds of treatment with argon-fed, cold atmospheric plasma. The researchers used an atmospheric pressure plasma jet they built with a 3D printer to spray surfaces that were treated with SARS-CoV-2 cultures. (2020-11-10)

Coating plastics by porous nanofilm
A research team has developed a new method for creating metal-organic framework (MOF) thin films that can be applied to sensors and electric devices. (2020-11-09)

Tough, strong and heat-endure: Bioinspired material to oust plastics
Being tougher, stronger and more adaptive to heat, a new bioinspired material is here to overtake petroleum-based plastics, thanks to researchers' work on an easy and scalable manufacture method. (2020-11-08)

Plastics and rising CO2 levels could pose combined threat to marine environment
An international team of scientists found that after three weeks of being submerged in the ocean, the bacterial diversity on plastic bottles was twice as great as on samples collected from the surrounding seawater (2020-11-06)

Why a "board-certified cosmetic surgeon" isn't a plastic surgeon, and what that means for you
Cosmetic surgery is not just another way of saying plastic surgery. Doctors who advertise themselves as certified by the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS) don't measure up to meet the criteria required for board-certified plastic surgeons. (2020-11-06)

Get on the grid: 'Micro-doses' of Botox provide up-close improvement of facial skin
Botulinum toxin - best known by the brand name Botox - is a popular treatment to reduce facial lines and wrinkles. Over the years, plastic surgeons have explored alternative approaches to maximize effectiveness while minimizing side effects of botulinum toxin injection, including smaller doses and more-diluted concentrations. (2020-11-06)

Tel Aviv University says 'environmentally-friendly' tableware harms marine animals
A new Tel Aviv University study compares the effects of two types of disposable dishes on the marine environment -- regular plastic disposable dishes and more expensive bioplastic disposable dishes certified by various international organizations -- and determines that the bioplastic dishes had a similar effect on marine animals as regular plastic dishes. (2020-11-04)

Leaf-cutter bees as plastic recyclers? Not a good idea, say scientists
Scientists have noted instances of leaf-cutter bees using plastic waste to construct their nests and one research group suggested such behavior could be an 'ecologically adaptive trait' and beneficial recycling effort. Utah State University scientist Joseph Wilson says no; such behavior is harmful to the bee's offspring. (2020-11-03)

Printing plastic webs to protect the cellphone screens of the future
Follow the unbreakable bouncing phone! A Polytechnique Montréal team recently demonstrated that a fabric designed using additive manufacturing absorbs up to 96% of impact energy -- all without breaking. Cell Reports Physical Science journal recently published an article with details about this innovation, which paves the way for the creation of unbreakable plastic coverings. (2020-11-02)

New study reveals United States a top source of plastic pollution in coastal environments
The United States ranks as high as third among countries contributing to coastal plastic pollution when taking into account its scrap plastic exports as well as the latest figures on illegal dumping and littering in the country. (2020-10-30)

Flash graphene rocks strategy for plastic waste
Rice University scientists advance their technique to make graphene from waste with a focus on plastic. (2020-10-29)

Mythbusting: 5 common misperceptions surrounding the environmental impacts of single-use plastics
Stand in the soda pop aisle at the supermarket, surrounded by rows of brightly colored plastic bottles and metal cans, and it's easy to conclude that the main environmental problem here is an overabundance of single-use containers: If we simply recycled more of them, we'd go a long way toward minimizing impacts. (2020-10-26)

Microplastics in groundwater (and our drinking water) present unknown risk
Microplastics (plastics <5mm) and their negative health impacts have been studied in oceans, rivers, and even soils, and scientists are beginning to grapple with the myriad human health impacts their presence might have. One understudied, but critical, link in the cycle is groundwater, which is often a source of drinking water. (2020-10-26)

War on plastic is distracting from more urgent threats to environment, experts warn
A team of leading environmental experts, spearheaded by the University of Nottingham, have warned that the current war on plastic is detracting from the bigger threats to the environment. (2020-10-23)

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