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The makers of the Simpsons TV show are to mark the programme’s 550th episode with one featuring the cast as 3D plastic Lego characters. 17 April 2014
Lego bricks have provided the inspiration for the design of a modular mobile phone codenamed Project Ara to be launched early in 2015 by Google’s Motorola Advanced Technology and Projects group 11 April 2014
PRW examines what inspires designers to make plastics the material of choice for new products. 11 April 2014
Researchers at the A*Star Institute of Materials Research and Engineering in Singapore have discovered a way to capture energy from the vibrations of lightweight polymers. The piezoelectric development could use the harvested energy to recharge batteries in mobile devices. 10 April 2014
D3O, a smart materials specialist, has expanded its R&D facilities at its head office in East Sussex with a new test lab, new prototyping facilities and additional hires to its technology team. 10 April 2014
Puma is using a lightweight TPE foam, Zotek Peba, from Zotefoams for the padding in its evoPower football boots. 9 April 2014
Horticulture packaging manufacturer, Desch Plantpak, is investing £2m in its Mundon site on a high-speed thermoforming line, material handling systems and quality control enhancements to its sheet extrusion capability. 8 April 2014
Bristol manufacturer, Phineas Group International, has opened the doors to its new factory in Hengrove with the help of a £100,000 grant from the West of England Growth Fund. 7 April 2014
Belgian bags and accessories brand Kipling have partnered Belgium-based 3D printing company Materialise to create the first ever flexible plastic 3D printed bag. 19 March 2014
Engineers are using carbon nanotubes (CNTs) instead of rigid silicon in an attempt to build flexible electronic devices, such as e-readers, that could be folded up or rolled away. 18 March 2014
UK retail sales last month slipped 1% on the February 2013 figure. However, a three-month average showed growth was 2.8%, in line with the 12-month trend. 11 March 2014
Essex-based plastic card manufacturer, Thames Card Technology (TCT), has received a £3.2m cash injection from investment firm BGF. The money will help the company to capitalise on the growth opportunities offered in the international bankcard and the prepaid card markets. 7 March 2014
Switch Lighting, a US developer of LED-based light fittings, used Sabic’s Lexan polycarbonate to make the globes for its Switch Infinia LED lamps. 5 March 2014
Toy giant Mattel has decided to join the fast-growing toy construction block market through an acquisition of Mega Brands. 3 March 2014
Lego has set a target to use a sustainable resin in its bricks by 2030, replacing ABS, but the search for an alternative will not be easy, according to Allan Rasmussen, the company’s senior project manager. 19 February 2014

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