Archive for September, 2003

Rapid Granulator: Introduction of 15-Series for clean room applications

Friday, September 19th, 2003

Rapid Granulator AB introduces a new dedicated granulator series for clean room applications at Fakuma 2003, hall B1 stand 7107, Friedrichshafen, Germany, from October 14 to 18.
Based on Rapid’s 1528 granulator, the new machine is equipped with a cabinet around the granulation unit that consists of two easy-to-remove parts. Negative pressure in the granulator and in the cabinet guarantee zero particle leakage from the unit. The design also incorporates an automatically operated sealed flap for the inlet of material, which is actuated by the moulding machine.
“We were approached by a manufacturer of medical applications in the United Kingdom to supply them with a completely dust proof version of the 15-Series,” says Johan Magnusson, Sales and Marketing Director of Rapid Granulator. “Their premises were clean-room class ISO8 during production (<100.000 ppm) and ISO7 when not running. In addition they depended heavily on the reliability of the granulator, to help reduce downtime during the injection moulding process.”
Magnusson continues: “Operating in these extremely clean environments demands the utmost from granulators, but thanks to Rapid’s long standing expertise we were able to provide an effective solution. The first ten units of this new, ultra clean granulator have been delivered to the UK customer and after the initial test period they are now running at full capacity.”
Other Rapid introductions at Fakuma are the type 2060 granulator, a scaled up version of Rapid’s 2048, and 1528 “Solo”. The 2060 was initially designed for the US market and is primarily developed for alongside press injection moulding applications. It will typically suit situations where Rapid’s 2048 is too small, but the larger 2660 can not be used to its fullest potential, such as the granulation of larger sprues and light-weight products. Other areas for this model are edge-trims as well as low capacity thermoforming-lines.
The 1528 “Solo” granulator has been designed for companies with only basic granulation needs. By cutting costs in the design, Rapid has succeeded in producing a very cost effective granulator that still offers Rapid’s cutting technology, high quality regrind, easy maintenance and 1 year warranty.
For more detailed information, visit Rapid at:

Basell: New Catalysts make it in the film world

Friday, September 19th, 2003

Basell has introduced a new Ziegler-Natta catalyst family based on ethyl-benzoate as internal donor that improves polymer morphology and bulk density. The proprietary ethyl-benzoate catalysts are designed specifically for gas phase polypropylene processes and are also suitable for liquid phase polymerisation.
‘By using ethyl-benzoate as internal donor, we have developed this catalyst on an advanced magnesium chloride support and this translates into better plant operability and higher throughput,’ said Werner Breuers, president of Basell’s Technology Business.’
‘The new catalysts produce resins with a broader molecular weight distribution compared to phthalate systems,’ added Michael Mulrooney, senior vice president, marketing and new ventures. ‘This makes them highly versatile and well suited for a variety of applications, especially film.’
‘With the addition of the new ethyl-benzoate catalyst, Basell now has the capability to meet 100% of every PP producer’s product requirements,’ said Mulrooney. ‘We have drop-in replacements for most existing systems, as well as more advanced catalysts for upgrading plants and expanding product capability.’

Hilex: Purchase of high-density film business from Sonoco

Tuesday, September 16th, 2003

Sonoco Products Co. announced today that it has a definitive agreement to sell its high-density film business to Hilex Poly Co. LLC for about US$123 million. The business is a major extruder of T-shirt bags, employing about 800. Through the first six months of 2003, the unit had sales of about US$89.5 million and pretax profit of about US$4.4 million. Sonoco said it does not consider the unit a core business.

Enercon: Award for Best in Session Presentation

Friday, September 12th, 2003

Leaders from the converting industry gathered August 3-7th at the Rosen Centre Hotel in Orlando, Florida for the 2003 TAPPI PLACE Conference and Global Hot Melt Symposium. The event featured presentations from many industry experts on a host of topics including extrusion coating, additives, and knowledge management. At the end of the conference, attendees were surveyed and asked to choose the best session. Out of thirty-five sessions, Enercon Industries’ Rory Wolf received the 2003 Al Davis Session Developer Award for his session titled Converter Spotlight.
Wolf developed and moderated the session while working with the PLACE marketing committee to formulate other session aspects. The session included ten speakers from leading packaging converting companies, each discussing what suppliers can do to accelerate the product development process when working with converters.
At a separate session during the PLACE conference, Wolf went on to outline recent developments in atmospheric plasma, enhanced chemical vapor deposition and the new functional process for delivering high performance coatings. Wolf is a three-year member of the TAPPI organization as well as a member of the TAPPI PLACE Division Council and the Chairperson on their Marketing Committee.
Enercon Industries Corporation, headquartered in Menomonee Falls, WI, is a major manufacturer of equipment for the plastics and packaging industries. The company supplies custom built bare-roll, covered-roll and universal roll corona treating systems, and 3D plasma treaters for the plastics and rubber industries.

Smurfit-Stone: Another 7-layer film line in Canada

Tuesday, September 9th, 2003

Chicago-based Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. recently completed the installation of a new seven-layer blown film line at its Brampton, Ont., plant. It will make coextruded packaging films for cereals, snacks, cheese, poultry, and meats. The line can run as many as seven materials. It supplements existing lines for two, three, and five layers.

Davis-Standard: Introduction of Cost-Effective Cast Film Line – “Cast Iron”

Thursday, September 4th, 2003

The “Cast Iron” film line has been developed by Davis-Standard to provide processors with a versatile and economical flat cast or embossed film processing alternative. The system is designed for producing 1.6-meter finished rolls at processing rates of 250 to 300 kilograms (550 to 660 pounds) per hour in monolayer or coextrusion configurations. Applications include cast film for CPP and stretch wrap as well as embossed film for diaper backsheets and hygiene products. System options include coextrusion using up to three extruders, discrete temperature or EPIC controls, manual or automatic dies, corona treatment, as well as gravimetric blending and rate control.
The extrusion complex is available in a 4-inch (100mm) or 3 1/2-inch (90mm) and 2 1/2-inch (65mm) standard configuration. Extruder options include the MAC (metric air-cooled) or Mark V® extruder in a floor mounted or “high boy” arrangement. All drives and power panels are pre-wired with the power panel from the primary extruder serving as the operator console. The pre-wiring significantly reduces installation and start-up time. A variety of feedblock and die combinations are also available. Davis-Standard’s full range of winders, including the PAC 50 surface winder, Horizon turret winder and TEC-2 center winder, can be added to the system based on customer specifications.
The system is capable of a maximum line speed of 600 feet per minute (185 meters per minute) for both cast and embossed film applications. Specific to cast film applications, standard equipment includes a dual-chamber vacuum box with optional air knife or air chamber and electrostatic edge pinners. Also included is a thickness gauge mounted on the casting unit. For embossed film, the system utilizes one water-cooled back-up roll for producing a “matte/matte” embossed film. The water circulation loop is pre-mounted and pre-piped, also facilitating a timely installation.
For more information about the new cost-effective system, contact Steve Post at [email protected]

Parkside: Installation of further W&H press

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2003

Parkside International, the flexible packaging producer and converter, has installed its latest Windmöller and Hölscher Novoflex printing press at its site in Yorkshire.
The flexographic unit is the second of its type at the plant and the fourth W&H press at Parkside, the first UK packaging manufacturer to install an eight-colour Novoflex line. Key markets for the line, thought to be the fastest print line of its kind in the UK, will include large width high speed runs for sectors including snack foods, bakery and personal care. Installation of the press coincides with the rationalisation of Parkside’s UK sites with the planned closure of the Stoke site.

Wavin: Acquisition of Czech pipe maker

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2003

Plastic pipe manufacturer Wavin is to acquire Ekoplastik, a producer of hot and cold tap water pipe systems based in the Czech Republic, for an undisclosed sum.

With a turnover of Euro 27m, Ekoplastik is one of the leading manufacturer of PP plastic pipes and fittings in Central and Eastern Europe. Its factory near Prague employs about 250 staff. Wavin has factories in Poland, Hungary and Lithuania, and has a sales presence in nearly all countries in the region. Currently it has no production facilities in the Czech Republic, but sells sewer and utility pipes and fittings for underground applications via a number of its own depots.

SMS Plastics Technology: New leadership

Monday, September 1st, 2003

Effective September 1, 2003, Steffen R. Burghoff will take over the management of SMS Plastics Technology as the successor to Dr. Helmut Eschwey. Burghoff is Executive Manager of SMS Aktiengesellschaft, the holding company of the SMS Group.
Aged 35, Burghoff holds a degree in economics and business administration with international experience in finance, controlling and management. He has had eight years’ experience with the ThyssenKrupp Group in various positions, including three and a half years as Managing Director of Shanghai Krupp Stainless, a joint venture of Thyssen-Krupp Stainless and the Chinese Baosteel Group. Subsequently, Burghoff held the position of CFO at SFC AG, a young company headquartered in Munich, Germany, which has already become a global market leader in portable fuel cells.
Dr. Eschwey who can look back on 11 years of successful leadership of the Plastics Technology Business Area of the SMS Group will still be linked with the Group as a member of the Advisory Board.

The SMS Plastics Technology Group includes the Battenfeld Injection Molding Technology companies (Germany and Austria), Battenfeld Extrusionstechnik and SMS Extrusion Kempen (both located in Germany), Cincinnati Extrusion (Austria and Japan), American Maplan (U.S.A.), Battenfeld Chen Extrusion Systems (PR China), as well as the film and sheet technology companies Battenfeld Gloucester (U.S.A.), SMS Folientechnik (Austria) and SMB David (Germany).

Gemini Plastics: New “No Tools” Fencing for Lawn and Garden Market

Monday, September 1st, 2003

A unique fencing system developed by Gemini Plastics, Inc., a division of The Gemini Group of Ubly, Michigan, makes fence building a snap, literally. Sold under the Regency Decorative Products and Landmark Fence trade names, Gemini’s system consists of coextruded fence rails and posts that connect to blow molded pickets with built-in fasteners. This proprietary fastening system interlocks with pre-routed slots in the rails to create a simple, no tools assembly. Due to a positive customer response, Gemini recently installed a customized Davis-Standard profile system to manufacture the fence rails and posts. Plans are currently underway to expand the product line to include a broad range of styles, colors and profiles.
“This product is an exciting development for us and our technology is truly unique when compared to many look-alike systems in the fencing market,” said Ben Maurer, plant manager at Gemini Plastics. “In addition to an easy assembly for quick installation, our pickets are molded with fasteners and caps for durability to stay intact. Our fastening method also adapts to uneven landscapes by allowing the pickets to remain vertical when the rails are on an angle.”
Gemini’s Davis-Standard system includes a GP-114 twin screw extruder with a GC-61 twin screw coextruder, a powder material loading system, profile tooling, vacuum sizing tank, secondary cooling tank, cleated haul-off, traveling cut-off saw and run-off tilt table. Davis-Standard also provided system start-up assistance and training at Gemini’s facility. The system is designed to produce rigid PVC fence profiles in excess of 1,100 pounds (550 kg) per hour. Currently the system is producing 4-by-4-inch and 5-by-5-inch posts and 1 1/2-by-3-inch and 2-by-6-inch rails.
“We’ve been a Davis-Standard customer since Gemini was founded over 27 years ago,” added Maurer. “We like working with Davis-Standard because they have high quality products and the service and support staff to back it up. All totaled, we have more than 30 Davis-Standard extruders ranging in size from
1 1/2 to 3 1/2 inches (38mm to 90mm). We’ve also purchased custom designed feedscrews.”
In addition to the new fencing system, Gemini is a regional supplier of custom automotive profiles. These include wire harness retainers and seat retainers among others. Gemini also manufactures hamper post profiles for the consumer industry. For more information about Gemini’s fencing and automotive products, contact Ben Maurer at [email protected] For more information about Davis-Standard’s profile systems, contact Wendell Whipple at [email protected]