Though (EU) No 2020/1245 – the so-called, “15th Amendment” to (EU) No 10/2011 (The Regulation) – officially entered into force in September of 2020, it was written to allow two years for business operators to exhaust their stocks of materials which had already been declared to be in compliance with The Regulation prior to the 15th Amendment. Between this grace period and the official date of publication, the 15th Amendment shall be considered to be in full effect as of September 2nd, 2022. Included in an array of adjustments to declaring compliance of products expected to come into contact with food under Annex IV of The Regulation is the obligation for business operators who produce intermediate substances to provide adequate information about the migration of respective impurities and degradants for which genotoxicity has not otherwise been ruled out. Consequently; impurities and degradants of commonly used plastic additives which currently have ambiguous toxicological profiles must now be shown not to migrate to food or food simulant from the intermediate material(s) in which they exist at a rate of 0.00015 mg/kg (0.15 parts-per-billion). In light of this obligation, research has been conducted into the presence, detection of and reporting on impurities and degradants of the prevalent plastic additive Anthranilamide (CAS No. 88-68-6). The degradants of Anthranilamide are representative of compounds which exhibit unknown toxicological status and are the epitome of the rationale for the inclusion of this concept in Annex IV of the 15th Amendment. The work presented in this paper sought to explore the challenges in adhering to the amended requirements in Annex IV of The Regulation insofar as how low the threshold of migration is set as well as options to consider for business operators producing intermediate compounds in the EU and the US who will both likely see increased demand for such declaration of compliance. As a subject, Anthranilamide is merely representative of all plastic additives that can give rise to degradants or which exhibit impurities that have unknown toxicological status and the ideas presented here are meant to be used generically in how best to navigate a new era of food contact plastics compliance requirements.
The Future of Tag / Trace and Product Loading Identification
Scott R Aumann graduated in 1987 and started in plastics in 1988 – after 10 years of technical positions in masterbatch, I joined EMD performance materials for 22 years. I am now working for Eluceda Authentication as Vice President of Business Development.
This paper and presentation is focused on the evolution of additives and detection systems in the polymer industry that will allow for fast and easy identification of secured materials in the supply chain and there proper use all the way to final application.
Breeze earned her bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and Chemistry Education from Montana State University. She then continued to earn her PhD. from Purdue University in Inorganic Chemistry in 2010. After earning her PhD, she joined BASF through a rotational program giving her experience in product stewardship, pharmaceutical research and new business development before joining the pigments division in 2014. The BASF pigments business was acquired by Sun Chemical in 2021 where she has continued doing technical service for pigments for plastic. She has been on the SPE CAD Board for the past 6 years.
Most new cars already have some sensing capabilities ranging from a low level of autonomy; back-up camera and parking sensors to something requiring a greater levels of autonomy like emergency braking and adaptive cruise control. The use of cameras and radar to achieve these car technologies that are already in use are limited to a 2-dimensional world with limited distance information. As the industry is pushed toward modes of greater autonomy this also requires more advanced methods of mapping the surroundings to create a safe self-driven car. To achieve higher autonomy the introduction of higher level of sensing beyond cameras and radar is required. Lidar is the key to the expansion of autonomy. Pigments play a large factor in the ability for a lidar system to detect and effectively map the surroundings
Part 2: Ultraviolet-C (UVC) Exposure and Its Effects on Color Change for Polystyrene
Kristen Chang is currently the R&D Engineer at Atlas Material Testing Technology LLC and has been with Atlas since November 2019. Her current role has focused on analyzing material photodegradation with UV exposure, as well as supporting her previous role as the Optical Engineer. She received a Bachelor of Science in Engineering with a Chemical Concentration from Calvin College (now Calvin University). Note: Part 1: Ultraviolet-C (UVC) Exposure and its Effect on Color Change for Polystyrene can be accessed via the SPE website since it was included in the on-demand portion of ANTEC 2022.
As the global pandemic, COVID-19, continues to progress, Ultraviolet-C (UVC) light remains utilized as a source for disinfection and sanitization because of its ability to do so quickly, and efficiently; therefore, the need to understand its effect on materials is significantly increasing. Regardless of the market demand, the effect on materials is crucial because any exposure leads to some sort of degradation, and the number of available publications is still limited.
Prior to this study, irradiance-based color change was the only aspect of material degradation that was heavily analyzed with the Standard Reference Material (SRM), polystyrene. However, after ongoing research, temperature dependency, dark time reaction and additional irradiance-based color change measurements have been observed. Thus, confirming the behavior of polystyrene when exposed to UVC light, which remains consistent at higher levels of irradiance than previously reported.
Beyond CIEL*a*b*; Other Helpful Values for the Color Matcher
Brian has had the good fortune of working with some of very best color professionals in plastics over the last 27 years. He began his career as a color matcher for Clariant Masterbatch and later moved into Technical Service for many years at Ciba Specialty Chemicals and BASF. He also served as the Technical Director for Uniform Color Company for about 7 years. He currently is a Principal Color Scientist for Celanese Corporation where he enjoys creating color and effects in a large variety of resins. Brian holds a Bachelors of Science in chemistry and a Masters in Business Administration.
Color matchers in the plastic industry rely on CIE color values, specifically L*, a* and b* and their related difference values. This paper briefly reviews other color values that may assist a color scientist achieve a match or a better understanding of how samples compare. First, color strength in white reduction is considered. Five common strength calculations are reviewed and empirically compared in multiple hues at several tint levels each. Special attention is given to standard depth of shade as it is thought to be the least understood of the five. Second, yellowness and whiteness indices are considered versus the CIE b* value by measurement of natural polymers exhibiting various degrees of deviation from neutral white. Recommendations are made for the best use of strength values and yellowness and whiteness indices.
Jeffrey received his BA in Biochemistry from East Stroudsburg University. Following this, he served in the offset printing industry and effect pigments markets in production and technical applications. Jeff is currently the Senior Technical Marketing Consultant/AMS for Chemours Titanium Technologies in Newark, Delaware
TiO2 is one of the most important pigments in the world today. As such, it makes up 70% of the consumption of these materials. TiO2’s use in packaging, publications, building/construction, paints, and textiles has become so widespread that it’s difficult to go anywhere without encountering its application. Each facet of TiO2 design gives useful light interaction, unique optical properties, and performance qualities. The goal of this presentation is to provide a more complete understanding of TiO2 features and aspects.
Mitigating Discoloration in Mechanically-Recycled Plastics
The mechanical recycling of plastics is an essential component of strengthening the circular economy, but one that comes with technical challenges. Issues such as discoloration and loss of mechanical properties degrade the value of recycled plastic by limiting its usefulness in more demanding applications. Antioxidants and process stabilizers have been shown to address similar issues virgin plastic, but these additives often fall short when working with recycled materials. Newly developed stabilization systems are presented here that can improve issues related to discoloration and property loss in recycled resins, leading to higher quality recyclates.
Preliminary Investigation of Air Pressure Effects on UV Weathering Color Change Rates.
A graduate of The University of Arizona, Kelly has been working since 1983 in service life prediction, environmental simulation, and weathering materials degradation on an R&D, Engineering and Quality Assurance level. Kelly has worked as a Researcher, Quality Process Engineer, and Engineering Manager for Alcoa Building Products and Dayton Technologies. Kelly is a Certified Quality Engineer as well as an ISO lead Assessor.
Currently, Kelly performs research, develops new products, and manages intellectual assets for Atlas Material Testing Technology an Ametek company. Kelly recently taught statistical methods at community college, holds seven patents, and represents Atlas’ technical research abilities at symposia, with consortia and in published literature. Kelly’s efforts led to an R&D100 award for Atlas in partnership with The National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Institute for Laser Optical Technology.
More can be found by Google searching for “Hardcastle Weathering”.
This paper presents results of preliminary investigations into effects of air pressures on UV photodegradation rates of two standard reference materials. Exposures under UVA and UVB demonstrated significant acceleration effects on color change with different air pressure exposure conditions.
The AGERA® Fluorimeter – A New Generation in Color Appearance Measurement
Jack is a consultant to industry providing real solutions for complex problems that save time, money and improve quality. He serves as an adjunct professor for PENN College, teaching Color Science. Ladson has published over 40 referred papers on color, including subjects on digital imaging, color appearance phenomena, instrumental performance, and process control. His book on Color Science is published and distributed in Asia. He has written many national and international standards for many companies.
Jack enjoys mathematics and studied graduate-level mathematics at MIT. Jack is Past President and honored member of the Inter-Society Color Council, an honored member of ASTM, a representative to the International Standards Organization (ISO), and a member of the US CIE, CORM, and the American Statistical Association. And of course, Jack is a long-time member of the SPE and is privileged to serve on the BOD since 2007.
Surface luminescence, or fluorescence as it is more commonly called, is used in various materials to enhance an object’s apparent whiteness and colorfulness. These materials or coatings contain fluorescent dyes and colorants that enhance their color appearance properties.
The AGERA Fluorimeter provides the only standardized way in colorimetric spectrometry to measure and quantify luminescence. Accurately evaluating the color appearance attributes of materials is essential in coatings, textiles, plastics, and fluorescent safety colors.
Technical advancements in Fluorescent Whitening Agents, FWAs, require an accurate assessment of the samples’ luminescent character. The bi-spectral method is the only precise way to determine the Bi-Spectral Luminescent Radiance Factor. The BSLRF compensates for instrument characteristics, allowing the samples’ total radiance properties to be calculated from the Donaldson radiance data. These data allow the critical parameters of color appearance properties to be calculated for any illumination of interest. These data are a critical component in determining product success.
Advanced Mechanical Recycling and Pigment-Polymer Compatibilization using 1.5 nanometer Tiranates and Zirconates
Salvatore J. Monte, President of Kenrich Petrochemicals, Inc.; Bachelor Civil Engineering-Structures, Manhattan College; M.S.-Polymeric Materials, NYU Tandon School of Engineering; Member Plastics Hall of Fame 2021-the Plastics Academy; Society Plastics Engineers Fellow & Honored Service Member; Licensed P.E.; Plastics Industry Association Recycle Subcommittee-Compatibilizers; Board of Governors, Plastics Pioneers Association-MTS Newsletter Chair; 32-U.S. Patents – most recent US Patent 2020/0071230 A1 dated Mar. 5, 2020; Lectured Worldwide on Titanate & Zirconate Coupling agents; 450-American Chemical Society CAS Abstracts of published “Works by S.J. Monte”; Classified Top Secret for Solid Rocket Fuel and Energetic Composites Patents for the Insensitive Munitions Program; Lifetime member of the National Defense Industrial Association; Lifetime Member of the BOD-SPE Thermoplastics Materials & Foams Division – Annual Scholarship named: Salvatore J. Monte Thermoplastic Materials & Foams Division Scholarship; External Advisory Committee-UCF NanoScience Technology Center; former Chairman of the NYRG-ACS Rubber Division; former President of the SPE P-NJ Section; Testified several times before Congress on Trade and IP Protection; Business Man of the Year 2015-Bayonne Chamber of Commerce; Federated Society Coatings Technology C. Homer Flynn Award for Technical Excellence; Recipient of the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award; Rotary Paul Harris Fellow; UA Million Miler; Member PIA, ACMA, SPE, ACS, ACS Rubber Division, ASCE, AIChE, SAMPE, the GRAPHENE COUNCIL, the Vinyl Sustainability Council.
How do you walk the walk after you’ve talked the talk? You pledged your company to sustainability goals such as increasing plastic recycle content and reducing carbon footprint – but, how do you get there? There’s more to Plastics Technology Innovation than Industry 4.0. There’s just so much you can do with software and hardware. Optimization cannot be achieved without first making more efficient use of the materials in the products you make, which for CAD members is the essence of sustainability.
My mission in life is to teach the more efficient use of raw materials and – as an entrepreneur who has been signing payroll checks for half-a-century – and an inventor with thousands of global patents by me and my customers – I will show how it can be done. We will look at how polymers are made – and how they are compounded – and provide solutions that will reduce cleaning and sorting and allow you to mix all the polymers, pigments and fillers in a melt compounder and make a better appearance product faster.
The extruder becomes a reactor for coupling and catalysis of all the materials in the recycle fed into the hopper. Here’s how:
If Ziegler, Natta & Kaminisky used Titanium and Aluminum catalysts to produce Addition Polymers;
If Titanate catalysts are used to produce Condensation Polymers;
If heteroatom Titanate coupling agents compatibilize Fillers with Polymers;
Monte claims: Why not use Titanate and Aluminum as a catalyst and coupling agent for compatibilizing the Fillers and Polymers (both Addition and Condensation) used in the Plastic to be Recycled.
Current plastic recycling and sustainability goals are limited by the intrinsic incompatibility of many polymers and the negative effect of fillers and impurities on end-product properties thus requiring a high degree of expensive sorting, separating and cleaning. Another barrier is the melt processing of polymers causes chain scissoring resulting in recycle and regrind materials having inferior properties compared to virgin. Current compatibilizers offered to recyclers are based on co-polymers or maleic anhydride modified polymers. Co-polymer compatibilizers require extensive sorting to match up the polarities of the recycled materials and maleic anhydride depolymerizes condensation polymers such as PET and Nylon obviating their use in post-consumer recycle. MAH technology claims to be a coupling agent, which is true for rebuilding molecular weight – but, misnomered when applied to coupling filler and organic interfaces.
Ziegler–Natta catalysts have been used in the commercial manufacture of various polyolefins since 1956. Ziegler showed a combination of TiCl4 and Al(C2H5)2Cl gave comparable activities for the production of polyethylene. Natta used crystalline α-TiCl3 in combination with Al(C2H5)3 to produce the first isotactic polypropylene. Kaminsky discovered that titanocene and related complexes emulated some aspects of these Ziegler-Natta catalysts but with low activity. He subsequently found that high activity could be achieved upon activation of these metallocenes with methylaluminoxane (MAO) −[O−Al(CH3)]n). Monte uses either a Monoalkoxy or Neoalkoxy Titanate in combination with Al2SIO5 mixed metal catalyst in Powder & Pellet forms for In Situ Macromolecular Repolymerization and Copolymerization in the melt – i.e. Polymer Compatibilization… AND … The Neoalkoxy Titanate proton coordinates with inorganic fillers and organic particulates to couple/compatibilize the dissimilar interfaces at the nano-atomic level thus reducing the need for expensive sorting of materials in Recycled Plastics.
Also, many compounders are schooled in silane coupling agent art thus limiting filler and organic interface coupling to hydroxyl bearing materials such as silica and fiberglass – thus categorizing fillers such as CaCO3, BaSO4, carbon black and organics such as oils as contaminants. In addition, silane art requires knowledge of hydrolysis mechanisms and techniques usually outside the realm of melt recycling compounders. We will show the only difference between ultramarine blue pigment and ordinary Portland cement is the ratio of five metal oxides, which can be organo-metal functionalized in the water, solvent or organic phase. In summary, Monte claims: “Nano-Titanium Technology applied at the interface of dissimilar materials may well be the Holy Grail of plastics recycling and material compatibilization”.
Verification of Color Difference Equations – Part II
Bruce received a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1980. He is now retired from Celanese where he was the Global Color Technology Director. Bruce has been involved with all aspects of appearance including color development, gloss control and UV stabilization. He was with Celanese for 35 years.
Bruce is an Honored Fellow of the Society of Plastics Engineers, having achieved both Fellow and Honored Service Member status. Bruce is very active within the Color & Appearance Division, where he is currently a member of the Board of Directors, Division Treasurer, past Councilor, and a past chairman. Bruce is currently the President-Elect of SPE, starting his term as President of the Society on January 1st, 2023. He is also a member of the Detroit Color Council. Bruce has presented numerous papers on coloring and UV stabilization, and holds several patents in those areas.
It is the goal of instrumental color measurement to correlate with our visual assessment 100% of the time. Much work has been performed over the years evaluating how well various color difference equations meet this objective. In this new study, seventy-six colors were evaluated using CIELab, CMC, and the proposed CIE DE2000 equations as they compared to the visual assessment. No equation yielded the desired 100% correlation.
Impact of Pigment Finishing on Plastic Application Performance
B.S Chemical Engineering – Drexel University, 1989
M.S. Engineering Management – Drexel University, 1992
I have been with Sudarshan for 5 ⅟2 years and one of my focus areas is the expansion of use of Sudarshan micas in the plastic applications – product introduction, product development and training. In addition, I support the technical needs of all the US plastic customers.
Prior to Sudarshan, I was with Axalta Coating Systems (formally DuPont) for 30 years and all of that time was in the pigment/colorant area.
Organic pigments are synthesized molecules that provide a fairly narrow color (chroma and hue) around the color wheel, and within that pigment chemistry or color index there is a small window for color shifting. However, how you “finish” the pigment – wash, surface treat, dry, mill, etc., can greatly impact the pigment’s performance in a plastic application. In this presentation, we will explore the impact of various finishing steps on plastic application properties such as color strength, heat stability, filter pressure, etc.
Properties of IR Black Plastics Optimized for Recycling
Identifying the polymer type in recycling facilities of an article colored with standard black pigments can be difficult. If the articles can’t be sorted, they often are removed from the recycling stream, hurting sustainability. Considering the amount of black plastic used in packaging materials, especially food grade containers, this is an impactful issue. Use of engineered pigments that absorb in the visible for a dark color while have near IR properties that allow hyperspectral scanners to identify the articles’ polymer type can address this problem while maintaining aesthetics and regulatory approvals. There are physical and performance differences between the standard and IR pigments and this paper will look at these differences to help facilitate the conversion to more sustainable plastics
Dr. Mark F. Self serves as Market Segment Manager for Heubach Colorants Solutions North American Plastics & Special Applications Groups. He has a Ph.D. in Organometallic Chemistry from Clemson University, emphasizing Ziegler Natta Catalysts. His Post-Doctoral at Duke University involved Group 13/15 Semiconductors. In 1993, Mark began his career in R&D with Sandoz Colors & Chemicals. He has managed the development, scale up, QC, and production of Dyes, Chemicals, and Pigments for use in various industries including plastics. Currently, he oversees marketing and technical support for North America.
John Seymour is an applied mathematician and color scientist. He is a professor at Clemson University, teaching color science and process control in the Graphic Communication and Honors schools. He has worked as a consultant since 2012 under the name “John the Math Guy”. John currently holds thirty-one US patents, has authored thirty technical papers, has presented at thirty-four conferences, and has keynoted at six conferences. He is an expert on the Committee for Graphic Arts Technologies Standards and ISO TC 130. He writes a blog which is described as “applied math and color science with a liberal sprinkling of goofy humor.”
Between 1992 and 2016, John was responsible for advanced product development for QuadTech, a manufacturer of process control equipment in the print industry. Prior to working with QuadTech, John worked as a scientific programmer in medical imaging, satellite imagery, electron microscopy, and spectroscopy. He holds bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and in computer science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
The road to CIELAB was paved with many “it seemed like a good idea at the time” moments. One can picture smoked-filled rooms full of standards committee members horse-trading over alliances, money passed along under the table, and hot-tempered exchanges of bare-knuckled fisticuffs. That’s not exactly how it happened…
In this talk we will learn how Eliot Adams brilliantly resolved the trilemma of how color really works. We will learn that the hallowed tristimulus functions were developed to emulate a color measurement device that never worked well and was all but obsolete fifteen years after the Standard Observer was standardized. We will learn how the distortions of the Mercator projection of the globe of color has been solved by giving people in Greenland longer rulers.
This is a story of unforeseen consequences: CIELAB does not behave as it should, and it’s all the result of decisions that seemed like a good idea at the time.
Dr. Jennifer Soliz
Sensing of Chemical and Biological Emerging Threats Using Unconventional Detection Modalities
Dr. Jennifer Soliz received her B.S. in biochemistry from the University of Texas at Austin in 2006 and her Ph.D. in chemistry from The Ohio State University in 2012 under the direction of Professor Patrick Woodward. She then was awarded the NRC Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship and was later promoted to a Research Chemist as a Federal Employee with the U.S. Army DEVCOM CBC in 2016. In 2021, Dr. Soliz began a part-time detail assignment at DTRA, which has transformed into a full-time detail assignment in 2022 as a science and technology manager detailee. Dr. Soliz has published 12 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals, has been awarded 12 U.S. Patents, has mentored several interns, and has served as one of the four Organizing Conference Committee Members for the World Chemistry Conference & Exhibition from 2018-2020. Additionally, she has been acknowledged in APG News as well as TechLink News, and has been an invited speaker to 5 international conferences, numerous national conferences, academic institutions, and DoD hosted events. Her research has primarily focused on synthesizing and characterizing inorganic materials used for the detection of hazardous threat compounds with an emphasis on understanding the structural, optical, colorimetric, and electrical correlations with the analyte of interest.
With the ever-growing chemical and biological threats posed to global security, the emergence of counter-measures against such threats remains paramount. Thus, research and development of the next generation of sensors to successfully detect these threats with no false alarms remains a top priority to the Department of Defense. Colorimetric materials can offer new exciting avenues for use as sensors for unconventional detection modalities, such as standoff detection of chemical and biological emerging threats. Such materials can be utilized to exploit changes in optical as well as colorimetric properties by providing fingerprint signatures in response to the presence of toxic threats. Further, these materials have the flexibility to be integrated into different technology platforms. In this talk, I will discuss the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s overall mission, as well as the Department of Chemical and Biological Technology’s objective to focus on the advanced development of science and technology to anticipate, defend, and safeguard against chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction to support the Joint Forces and Special Operations Forces.
Eve Vitale is Chief Executive at the SPE Foundation which supports the development of plastics professionals by funding quality educational programs, grants, and scholarships, emphasizing science, engineering, sustainability, and manufacturing while working to create inclusive opportunities for students around the world. She has 10+ years’ experience in STEM-education and non-profit development and leads the PlastiVan®, a national plastics education program for K-12 students. PlastiVan works to change the perception of plastics one classroom at a time through positive plastics education and material sustainability while encouraging students to consider the industry they’ve never heard of – plastics – as a career path. Ms. Vitale has degrees in mechanical and manufacturing engineering and has worked as a consultant in recycled materials and plastics sustainability.
Through Positive Plastics Education the SPE Foundation has developed unique programs to overcome the high hurdles of successful workforce development in the plastics industry, which is an invisible entity to children.
To make progress, we must be willing to think big, start small and stay in it for the long haul. Eve’s talk will demonstrate how we:
Create acceptance of plastic as a necessary material among students and their teachers through PlastiVan® and PlastiVideo®
Create opportunities for historically under-represented populations in the plastics industry through community collaborations, after-school SPE STEM clubs and a partnership with the Girl Scouts
Support emerging workforce through scholarships and grants
Utilize industry partnerships to move this important work forward
The Sustainability of Plastics: Panel Discussion
This panel will discuss the sustainability of colorants used in plastics and their ability to be reused, recycled or reduced to enhance their sustainability.
Doreen Becker is Ampacet’s Global Director of Sustainability. She has over 20 years of experience in the coloration of plastics and color insight trending.
Doreen holds a Bachelors of Science in Analytical Chemistry from King’s College and a Masters in Fine Arts from New School University- Parsons in New York City. She has more than 10 international patents and has written and presented papers all over the world.
She is formerly the Chair of SPE’s Color & Appearance Division and has served on their board for more than 12 years. She has also presented numerous presentations at SPE and other international plastic conferences over the years.
Doreen was recently elected to the Society of Plastic Engineer’s executive foundation board and chairs the Plastivan committee and also serves as the secretary of the Endowment Committee.
With over 20 years’ experience, Kari leads Sustainability at PADNOS, an industrial recycler of paper, plastics, metals, and electronics. She is a GreenBiz certified professional, Leading the Sustainability Transformation, GRI Certified Sustainability Professional, a board member of the West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum, and the Treasurer of the Society of Plastic Engineers Recycling Division. She is a result driven leader skilled at developing sustainability initiatives. Her expertise in materials allows her to capitalize on circular economy market trends. In 2021 her team developed 27 solutions for OEM’s and Tier 1 suppliers. Her ability to establish trust with a diverse array of customers, and identify what they value, brings all the necessary stakeholders together to solve complex circular economy challenges.
Joseph Machado is a veteran of the oil, gas, and petrochemical industry with a background in R+D, innovation, and sustainability. Since 2019, Joe has been with the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, currently in the capacity of Senior Advisor to Projects in the Americas region.
Previously, Joe held a series of positions with Shell Oil Company spanning R+D, business development, innovation and sustainability in Shell’s plastics, petrochemicals, and oil products businesses. Joe has been based in Houston, New Orleans, London, and Brussels during the last 30 years, and currently resides in Houston, TX
Joe holds a BS in Plastics Engineering and a PhD in Polymer Science and Engineering from the University of Massachusetts (USA).
Mercedes Landazuri is Director of Technology & Innovation for Peacock Colors, Vortex Liquid Color, and Poly Compounding. Landazuri holds a BA in World Languages from Sarah Lawrence College. She currently serves as Education Chair for SPE Recycling Division and Councilor for SPE Color and Appearance Division. She is an active member of Color Marketing Group, where she facilitates annual trend forecasting workshops for North America. She serves as a guest lecturer at College for Creative Studies’ Color & Materials Design MFA program, as well as Advanced Design’s CMF course. In 2022, alongside co-host Lynzie Nebel and editor Deb Zaengle, Landazuri was awarded the Trendy Pinnacle Award for her monthly podcast, PlastChicks. In her spare time, Landazuri is a professional guitarist, percussionist, and vocalist, performing regularly on the Chicago music scene.