AIJU develops a new conductive plastic formulation that improves the Electromagnetic behaviour of Toys

Polypropylene with 8% Carbon Noir Polypropylene with 8% Carbon Noir

Electrical and electronic toys are of considerable relevance within the sector and due to the increase in videogames and similar products it is a progressively increasing sector. These types of toys produce interference on the proper functioning of other electronic appliances due to the magnetic interference they produce, and at the same time the toys are affected while working.. Nevertheless, the market cost of these products does not allow the insertion of high technology features to avoid this interference.

Taking this into account, AIJU is developing the EMITOY project, funded by IMPIVA (Expedient IMIDIC/2010/40) and FEDER funds, whose main objective is the achievement of new conductive plastic formulations that avoid this electromagnetic interference. So, it is intended to incorporate carbon nanofibbers into the most common thermoplastics within the toy sector (Polyethylene (PE) and Polypropylene (PP)) to facilitate the electrostatic dissipation, electrostatic painting and electromagnetic outer screening. The main characteristics that the obtained materials must have, are: to be lightweight (plastic materials based), widely effective in front of a magnetic and electric field, with a competitive price and the capability to be processed by extrusion and injection.

Ana Ibáñez, project manager and technician says that “the effective applications of these developments within the toy sector are wide and, with the collaboration of the enterprises in the sector, that contribute with their needs and requirements in this field, they can be extended and optimized. The toy enterprises will be able to undertake new product designs, that currently are not possible due to the limitations of the materials used, filters and possible metallic casings and, consequently, innovations of their toys will be enhanced, their adaptation to the new legislation improved, as will competitiveness relating to products imported from other countries.

About AIJU:
The Toy Research Institute (AIJU) is a non-profit making organisation, located in Ibi, the Spanish geographic centre for the manufacture of toys. It was founded in 1985 with the collaboration of the Spanish Toy Manufacturers Association (AEFJ) and the Regional Government (IMPIVA).

Its aim is to transfer and allow toy manufacturers access to the knowledge of new technologies in order to improve their competitivity, while offering technological and financial assessment and supporting the professional development of people involved in the sector. For this purpose, it has a staff of 75 professionals who develop their work in the different departments that make up AIJU. Besides, this organization is provided with the required infrastructure to manage the different activities it undertakes.

The department intended to carry out these tasks is that of Product Development – Laboratory Department, specifically the Processing and Materials area. This area has several research lines for the development of new materials both, for traditional technologies and rapid manufacturing technologies. The area carrying out this project has been working closely with the Rapid Manufacturing area for 10 years now with the objective of reaching final material sets.

AIJU is an active member of the Rapid Manufacturing European Platform and the Spanish mirror led by ASERM, the Spanish Rapid Manufacturing Association. It is also member of EuMAT and Manufuture. AIJU is the coordinator of the working group “Rapid Prototyping Proposal SP3 (materials) Lab” and member of the “Materials” group promoted by REDIT, the RDT Centres of IMPIVA’s Network.
In the field of standardisation, the entity is working on the potential feasibility of proposed legislation as well as new safety criteria for toys, with participation in several proficiency testing schemes both, on a National and European Level. Thus, it is participating in the development of new standards for toys in the European Committee of Normalization (CEN).

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