Frank Nissel, an extrusion pioneer who co-founded extrusion equipment maker Welex in 1966, passed away on August 28 at age 88.
Born in Germany, Nissel emigrated to the U.S. in the 1940s, began his career in plastics in 1946 with Union Carbide, and then co-founded Welex in 1966. His collaboration on co-extrusion with leading packaging producers in Europe and Japan led to its prevalence in those markets and ultimately to North America. Similarly, collaboration in Japan with a pioneering EVOH barrier packaging producer resulted in innovations that made their way to North America in the early 1980s, when the first successful barrier container was produced.
Nissel was awarded patents in the U.S. and 13 foreign countries and authored over 50 technical articles and papers for innovations in extrusion and co-extrusion processing, barrier packaging, die design, and calendering. He was inducted into the Plastics Hall of Fame in 2000, and retired from the industry in 2010.
Welex is now part of York, Pa.-based Graham Engineering Corporation.