||January 1, 2006
The relocation of the Latex Products manufacturing, especially commodity latex products, to South Asia due to material prices, manpower and accessibility has created competitive challenges for latex based industries elsewhere. This can now be addressed with Smart NR Products from Latex through the Convergence of Frontier Technologies with Innovations to design latex materials and products which display unusual or specific properties. The criticality of particle sizes and their submicron modulation to create synergies in the properties of smart materials is seen. The impact of using such materials in conventional latex dipping processes and in dry rubber technology processes such as Extrusion and Compression Moulding are outlined. In conclusion, the Vision for Smart NR Latex and Rubber--incorporating piezoelectric fibre composites, thermochromic and photochromic pigments, nanometallic and nanofiller composites, slow release materials, lotus effect coatings and micro-nano machine embedded NR--envisages new horizons for latex product manufacturers.