November 6, 2014, Chattanoogan Hotel, Chattanooga, TN

 “Art and Science of Microencapsulated Phase Change Materials in Flexible Polyurethane Foam” Jei McKinney, Encapsys®

This presentation provides an introduction and overview of the microencapsulation technology and will discuss the application of Encapsys® Phase Change Materials (PCM) in flexible polyurethane foam production. This technology is based on the performance of extremely small capsules (typically 5 to 40 microns for use in foam production) that permanently contain PCMs and allow the PCM to absorb thermal energy when exposed to heat. Test results demonstrate the ability of Encapsys® microencapsulated PCM to provide significant cooling benefits in flexible polyurethane foam in mattresses and pillows. The presentation will provide information on capsule size and performance consistency, energy absorption control, and compatibility with flexible polyurethane foam continuous pouring production.

 “Controlled Pore Size in FPF Manufacturing” Tom Cushman, Cushman Engineering

Flexible polyurethane foams for technical applications with tight performance specifications manufactured for further processing (e.g.: chemical or thermal reticulation) require uniformly controlled pore size. Basic elements of pore size control are addressed. These elements are largely the relationship of processing parameters such as pressure, temperature, dissolved gas and mixing shear to resultant pore size. The effect of adjusting each of these control parameters is examined. An emphasis is placed on controlling dissolved gas level in the isocyanate stream and polyol stream. Examples of equipment configurations required to obtain good pore size control are discussed and illustrated with piping schematics and equipment diagrams.

 “Understanding Pink Stain Testing” Scott Brown, Lonza

This paper addresses significant industry concerns regarding recent polyurethane foam failures in the standard ASTM E-1428 pink stain test protocol. Understanding what actually causes pink stain, how and why it occurs, and what it takes to pass the current ASTM 1428 test standard is critical to identifying why these failures are occurring at foaming plants around the world. Prodiginine pigments are the typical components that are responsible for the pink staining of both polyurethane foams and vinyl substrates. These are pigments are the metabolic excretions of various bacteria called Streptomyces; Streptoverticulum reticulum being the specific Streptomyces used in the ASTM E-1428 test. The marine environment is especially prone to pink staining, however, bedding, flooring and other construction components are also susceptible to pink stain problems. This paper highlights the details of the staining process and provides a review of the current ASTM E-1428 test as it specifically relates to polyurethane foams. Modifications to this test are likely the key to success for the polyurethane foam industry. The current work underway and the positive results to date will also be discussed.

 “Consumer Research: Demand for Flame Retardants in Furniture” Scott Houlahan, Chemtura

This presentation provides consumers' perspectives on fire safety, flame retardants, and furniture. Furniture manufacturers must choose how best to ensure the fire safety of their products. Part of that choice includes a decision about whether to continue using flame retardants. Decisions involve risk management, product safety, and consumer demand. To help decision-makers, Chemtura recently commissioned an independent consumer study conducted by research firm Edelman-Berland. The survey of nearly 2,000 consumers across the nation (including California) demonstrated that consumers overwhelmingly expect furniture manufacturers to continue using flame retardants to enhance the safety of their products. In addition to an overview of the survey results, audience members will gain an understanding of how the changes proposed to the TB-117 standard can impact business risk and liability as well as the potential reputational impacts of removing flame retardants in furniture. Understanding these issues is critical for the polyurethane foam industry as it continues working with furniture manufacturers regarding fire safety aspects of their products. A summary of the survey is provided as the published paper.

 “Final Report: Emissions Testing of Cured FPF for TDI / MDI” Nick Ordsmith, Hall Analytical

This comprises the final report on emissions testing of high-density specimens of conventional, high resilience, super-soft and viscoelastic foams for the presence of TDI or MDI. Small chamber testing was conducted using the International Isocyanates Institute protocol for the collection and analysis of emanations of flexible polyurethane foam. TDI/MDI emissions testing was performed on 24 freshly-cured foams samples representing 6 specimens in each of 4 foam categories using a validated emissions testing and analysis method. There were no detectible TDI/MDI emissions.

 “Conversion of FPF Residues into Polyol on an Industrial Scale” Lyudmila Skokova, H&S Anlagentechnik GmbH

This paper describes commercially-viable H&S Technology for conversion of flexible PU foam residues into polyol based on an optimized acydolysis method. FPF residues are dissolved in a mixture of polyether polyol, carboxylic acids and catalyst. The recovered polyols, having the appropriate hydroxyl number, very low acid groups which is important for good polyol reactivity, and minimal concentrations of primary aromatic amines, can replace up to 20% - 25% of the original basic polyol. Currently, various grades of conventional foams and HR foams produced with SAN polyols can be recycled using H&S technology. Recycling technology for viscoelastic foams is under development.

 “How Maxfoam Machine Design Affects Pour Yield, Waste Reduction and Gross Margin” Per Henning Vaagen, Laader Berg®

This paper provides a brief history of foaming system developments and examines the effect of the Maxfoam mechanical pour system on foam yield, waste generation and gross margin. Data are provided to demonstrate how machine design impacts bun shape, density distribution and raw material consumption.