Plastic product design and injection molding has been continuously growing since WWII. In fact, the plastic industry is the third largest manufacturing industry in the United States. The plastics sector is among the most notable success story and has helped lead the way in economic recovery. Injection molding remains a vital part of the U.S. economy and a source for hundreds of thousands of jobs. So what else do you know about the plastic industry? To learn more, read 10 of our most interesting facts that you may not have known about plastics and where they come from below!
10 Interesting Facts About Plastic
- The word ‘plastic’ comes from the Greek plastikos, meaning ‘capable of being shaped and molded.
- The first plastics were made of organic compound cellulose, nitric acid, and solvents. They formed a plastic called Parkesine, named after its inventor Alexander Parkes. Unfortunately, his product was highly flammable.
- In 1907, Leo Hendrik Baekeland heated wood alcohol and coal tar in an autoclave and cooled the amber mixture to create fire-resistant Bakelite. This was used to mold telephones, home appliances and much more.
- Cellophane was created by Jacques E. Brandenberger by mixing viscose into an acid bath where it could stretch into sheets.
- In 1940, cellophane was polled as the third most beautiful word in the English language, behind mother and memory.
- Today the world makes and consumes about 600 billion pounds of plastic yearly, and the market is still growing about 5% a year.
- The most common plastic is polyethylene, which is composed of sprawling hydrocarbon chains. This is often used in grocery bags and bottles.
- Bacteria and fungi are no match for most plastic molecules, which are too huge for microbes to digest.
- In the 1970s, James Watson Hendry developed the first gas-assisted injection molding process, which permitted the production of complex, hollow articles that cooled quickly.
- Injection molding and plastic manufacturing facilities can be found throughout the country in all 50 states. There are nearly 16,000 facilities in the United States.
At Design-Tek, we are always working on updated ways to form plastic product design while maintaining quality production. We take consideration of all your needs when finding the right plastic molds for you.
To learn more about designing molded plastics and injection molding in Utah, please contact us here or call us at 801-393-4400.