General Plastics Participates in the 2013 National Space & Missile Materials Symposium

Polyurethane innovator will spotlight its high-temperature tooling boards, and flame-retardant, aerospace-grade rigid and flexible foams

TACOMA, Wash., June 19, 2013 – General Plastics Manufacturing Company is participating in the 2013 National Space & Missile Materials Symposium (NSMMS), taking place June 24-27 at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue on Seattle’s Eastside. This is the company’s first appearance at the annual event, which is devoted to advanced materials, processing and manufacturing for space, missile and hypersonic systems. General Plastics will showcase its tooling, composite core and flexible foam products at Booth 101 in the Hyatt Regency’s Evergreen Ballroom. 

The 2013 symposium is expected to attract nearly 500 system engineers, designers, research scientists, technologists and industry leaders who are driving the development of advanced materials technology. General Plastics’ trailblazing chemistry-based solutions have contributed to critical aerospace and defense programs for many years. Its products are backed by ongoing research and development, stringent quality certifications, and ITAR compliance. 

“Our superior-quality materials have been proven in missile defense applications for more than 50 years, and have supported extraterrestrial missions since the dawn of the space age,” noted General Plastics President Bruce Lind. “NSMMS is the perfect venue to hear from the brightest minds in these industries and explore ways our products and capabilities can help realize their visions.” 

The manufacturer’s polyurethane foams satisfy diverse applications within the realm of military defense. These materials have been used extensively as “spring-damper” shock isolation systems, protecting missiles in underground silos and submarine launch tubes. The Minuteman, Peacekeeper and Trident programs have all benefited from advanced LAST-A-FOAM® products. 

Growing interest in cost- and weight-saving alternative materials 
For today’s manufacturing engineers who are focused on advanced materials, efficient processes and cost-saving solutions, General Plastics’ foam products provide an affordable alternative to more costly or limiting materials in many applications. Within the aerospace industry, they have been used in composites manufacturing for years as a replacement for metals. 

“The imperative to maximize payloads while improving fuel efficiencies has increased demand for our low-weight, high-strength polyurethane foams,” Lind said. “Similarly, our advanced tooling boards are ideal for short tooling runs and prototype development where metal dies are cost-prohibitive.” 

At NSMMS, the company will feature its rigid closed-cell foams for tooling and composite core applications, as well as its flexible and semi-flexible open-cell foams: 

LAST-A-FOAM® FR-4700 HT Tooling Board Series – This high-performance tooling board readily handles prepreg composite layup tooling for high-temperature applications up to 400º F. It is an easily machined, affordable choice for prototype machining, vacuum forming, master plugs and molds, and pattern making. General Plastics’ open-cell flexible and semi-flexible foams are designed for applications where energy absorption, fire retardancy, appearance and versatility are important: 

and LAST-A-FOAM® TF-5070 semi-flexible products are extremely durable and relatively unharmed by environmental factors. They are formulated to absorb large amounts of impact energy at controlled rates while cushioning payloads from high G-stress levels. 

LAST-A-FOAM® WSF-1010 and LAST-A-FOAM® WSF-1121 flexible foam products are flame-retardant, durable, self-skinning foams used extensively in flight decks and cabin applications. They are self-extinguishing and can be custom-molded to the client’s exact specifications. 

General Plastics also offers custom foam formulation and works closely with clients to address specific needs. 

“We are excited about continuing to collaborate with our aerospace and defense partners, and commercial space companies as they extend the frontiers of space travel and exploration,” Lind said.