Archive for February, 2006

Kiefel Extrusion: Enhanced Cooling Package

Wednesday, February 8th, 2006

The newest development from KIEFEL Extrusion is the ECP (Enhanced Cooling Package), which will be among the exhibits presented to trade professionals at the PLAST fair in Milan, from February 14 to 18. The machinery manufacturer based in Worms has developed ECP especially for the production of heavy duty bags. Interested visitors will find KIEFEL, together with its representative company SIRT, at the fair center in Rho-Pero at Stand B/C 16/15 in Hall 9. The German blown film specialist is ideally prepared for the Italian market: after all, more than 20 percent of the heavy duty bags made in Europe come from there.

Capable of integration in all of KIEFEL’s KIRION® lines, the system in particular allows for high throughput performance of more than 300 kg/h, with the typical tube measurements for bag production of 535 mm x 140 µm (lay-flat width x film thickness). This very good result in the throughput performance is by no means self-evident. Although heavy duty bags that are intended for filling with bulk products such as pet food, fertiliser products or granulate still are treated as commodity products, their production requires a significant amount of know-how and expertise. “Our customers who have already seen the system in operation at our laboratory were impressed by the values of thickness tolerance, stiffness and sealing properties or also by the tear resistance and penetration strength of the heavy duty bags produced”, KIEFEL managing director Edgar Gandelheidt reports of the pleasing test run with the Enhanced Cooling Package. “Worldwide, but especially in Italy, where we have already sold 14 lines since the introduction of the KIRION® range, the new module now holds promise of creating exceptionally interesting additional business”, Gandelheidt continues.

The KIEFEL KIRION® blown film lines are proven technology, and include universal 30 L/D screws, allow film producing customers to process the widest possible range of polymers (PE LD, PE-LLD, PE-HD or PP) without any problems. They can count upon the C3 profile control system that reliably maintains close thickness tolerances. Additional cooling devices such as two sets of nip rollers and a set of S-wrap cooling rollers which are installed in the KIRION® T film take-off avoid, together with KIRION® W winders, breaking of the folded edges and enable winding without blocking of the film, even with large reel diameters.

Davis-Standard Feedscrews on Sale

Wednesday, February 8th, 2006

To reduce its feedscrew inventory, Davis-Standard, LLC is offering more than 25 feedscrew designs at significantly reduced prices. Feedscrews for a variety of applications and resins are available in sizes ranging from 3/4-inch to 3.5-inches (19 to 90mm). Examples include metering screws, DSB® screws with spiral mixers, low work RPVC barrier screws, DSB high work FPVC screws and rubber screws. Available feedscrews are for Davis-Standard extruders only, including the Killion, Mark, Thermatic®, D-S Series, NRM and Super Blue® extruder lines. The feedscrews can be viewed online at www.davis-standard.com. Under the “R&D/Technology/Services” heading, click on the link that reads “Special Screw Prices.” There you will find a complete listing and description of available feedscrews as well as photos and pricing.
This is the first time we’ve ever had a feedscrew sale,” explained Rick Stannard, manager of Davis-Standard’s inter-company sales. “We manufactured additional screws to support our large base of extruders in the field and our inventory simply got overstocked. This is a great time for our customers to purchase new or replacement feedscrews at very good prices.”
For more information on the feedscrew sale and availability, contact Rick Stannard at [email protected] or (860) 599-6203.

Erku International Ltd: Turba Pipe Factory in Ashgabat Formally Inaugurated

Tuesday, February 7th, 2006

Turkmenistan, formerly ranked among the world’s top 10 cotton producers, possesses extensive oil and natural gas reserves, which, for lack of an ade-quate infra-structure, cannot yet be fully exploited for the country’s economy. As part of Turkmenistan’s endeavor to become industrialized, the Turkish company Erku International Ltd, headquartered in Ankara, received an order to plan and build a pipe factory. An ultra-modern production facility with a total area of almost 167,000 m2 has now been constructed in Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan, where in future about 8.5 million meters of various pipe and fitting systems will be produced annually for the local market and neighboring Central Asian markets. On February 19, 2006 the facility will be inaugurated with a formal opening ceremony in the presence of high-ranking government officials.
The new Turba Pipe Factory with a production floor area of 37.621 m2 is owned by TURKMENNEFTEGAZSTROY. ‘To supply high-quality products to our markets at an attractive price level from the very beginning, this facility has been planned under the most modern aspects and equipped with state-of-the-art machinery from material feeding to quality inspection’, says Gökan Arasli, the company’s Managing Director.
Right from production start-up the company’s product range is characterized by an enormous variety of different items. Towards this end, the facility has been equipped with an extensive range of complete high-performance production lines. Twelve in-jection molding machines with clamping forces ranging from 15 to 160 t will produce a total of 350 different fittings. The range includes HDPE and MDPE fittings with diameters between 20 and 315 mm for gas and water transport pipe systems and various connecting pieces for electrical installations. In addition to these, Turba Pipe offers PP fittings in the 50 to 160 mm diameter range, PP-R-C fittings from 20 to 63 mm in diameter as well as steel-reinforced fittings for high-pressure pipes. For these products in particular, the processor has invested in a metal processing line with a CNC cutter and a robot-controlled welding system.
In the extrusion hall, eight complete extrusion lines for the production of pipes and hoses have been installed. Five of these have been supplied by the Viennese com-pany Cincinnati Extrusion GmbH. They include an irrigation pipe manufacturing line, equipped with an Alpha extruder for pipes with diameters from 16 to 20 mm. As an alternative, this line can also produce PVC hoses with fiber content and diameters ranging from 6 to 32 mm. In addition, Cincinnati Extrusion has installed one mono-extrusion line and two co extrusion lines for the production of PE pipes with diame-ters from 20 to 630 mm, of non-pressure PP pipes with diameters ranging from 50 to 200 mm and 20 to 63 mm PP-R pipes for domestic installations. The fifth line is a 7-layer co extrusion line equipped with 7 extruders, to manufacture specialized plastic composite pipes with steel reinforcement for high-pressure applications ‘Depending on customers’ specifications concerning standards of pressure-resistance and the substance to be transported, we are able to produce pipes wrapped in either two or four layers of steel with this line, and also with our second line’, Arasli explains. Fi-nally, the company’s product portfolio also includes fiberglass-reinforced pipes, for the production of which the pipe manufacturer has also installed suitable equipment.
In addition to injection molding machines and extrusion lines, the facility is equipped with a fully automatic, central material drying and conveyance system. To allow for cost-efficient operation of the facility with minimum wastage, a granulator has been provided for in-house recycling. The company’s laboratory contains ultra-modern test equipment, so that all necessary mechanical and chemical tests can be carried out directly.

Davis-Standard: Fibermaster® II Specialized for Non-Wovens Industry

Monday, February 6th, 2006

To address the evolving demands of the non-wovens industry, Davis-Standard, LLC has engineered the Fibermaster® II extruder to support every fiber application. The Fibermaster, built for durability and operating efficiency, is designed specifically for monofilament, multifilament, spunbond and meltblown processes. Key advantages include the capacity to process a variety of resins including materials with a high recycled content and machine versatility for processing complex bi-component structures. Fibermaster extruders have a solid track record among industry-leading OEM’s for support of applications within the hygienic, medical disposable, hazardous materials, filtration, staple fiber, carpet and furniture markets. The Fibermaster has also been effective in laboratory and university/college environments for research and development.
‘This extruder is unique in that it offers dedicated technology for the fiber industry. It is not an off-the-shelf machine,’ said John Plante, product manager of Davis-Standard’s fiber systems. ‘The Fibermaster is a premium extruder package that combines efficiency with performance to reduce operating costs and provide a long-term return on investment. This is especially important as producers look to reduce material costs. The Fibermaster is equipped to effectively process just about any material, and Davis-Standard extruders are known to last up to 40 years or more.’
The Fibermaster is especially advantageous for bi-component structures, in-line alloying/blending or color applications where quality control and outputs are critical. The machine can be combined with another Fibermaster or Davis-Standard extruder to achieve ‘A’ and ‘B’ output ratios ranging from 80/20 to 50/50 to 20/80. Davis-Standard solutions enable multiple polymers to be processed using the same extruder and feedscrew to avoid unnecessary screw changes, and screws can be designed to be interchangeable from the ‘A’ to the ‘B’ extruder. Davis-Standard’s extensive feedscrew technology covers the full range of polymers including PA 6, PA 66, PET, PP, PE, CO-PET, PPS, TPU and recycled resins, among others.
Superior energy efficiency is achieved component by component. The Fibermaster’s thermal expansion helical gear cases have a mechanical efficiency of 95 percent or better. A fully cored feed throat enables process heat segregation, and highly efficient heaters ensure a rapid set point time. In addition, the extruder is available with zone cooling blowers or water cooling capabilities. The air-cooled machines are equipped with high volume blowers for effective heat removal. Water-cooled machines are available for applications requiring higher heat removal efficiency. Both feature a wide selection of gearbox ratios to maximize kilowatt per kilogram per hour (kw/kg/hr) value.
The Fibermaster is available in 2-inch (50 mm), 2 1/2-inch (65 mm), 3-inch (75 mm), 3 1/2-inch (90 mm), 4-inch (100 mm), 4 1/2-inch (130mm) and 6-inch (150 mm) models with L/D’s from 24:1 to 34:1. The extruder and feedscrews can be engineered to meet specific process specifications. The Fibermaster is also designed to be compatible with systems offered by most major fiber equipment suppliers.

Toray Plastics: Revelutionary Two-side-treated Packaging Film

Monday, February 6th, 2006

A new patent pending, two-side-treated, multi-function, co-extruded polyester film now makes it easier than ever for converters and end users to manufacture stand-up pouches. Toray Plastics (America), Inc. announces new, versatile, tack-sealable polyester Lumirror® PA30, a symmetrical transparent film technology that is modified on both sides for improved printing and laminating adhesion. Therefore, either side of the revolutionary new film offers two different performance capabilities.
In addition, the multi-function polyester Lumirror® PA30 can also be used to tack seal to itself, or can be used to lap seal the inside surface of a lamination to the outside surface. In the latter, a lamination made with a heat-sealable polyester film, such as Toray Plastics (America), Inc.’s Lumirror® PA25, is on the inside sealing surface, and Lumirror® PA30 is on the outside. Permanent laminations and strong seals help deliver a better food product and ensure brand integrity.The new FDA-compliant, food packaging innovation enables converters and end users to grow new business with a wide range of popular and unique stand up pouch applications, including snack food and confection.
Brand logo and color fidelity, and eye-catching graphics are integral to a product’s success. New Lumirror® PA30’s good adhesion of printing inks supports water- and solvent-based ink systems, as well as and aqueous coatings, including aqueous-based silicone release coatings.
Co-extruded polyester Lumirror® PA30 also offers significant production benefits. Its excellent physical properties allow it to be easily laminated, printed, or vacuum metalized. Polyester Lumirror® PA30 handles well on high-speed equipment for improved processing and better production yield, and is easy to convert and print on. In addition, it offers excellent thermal stability and superior mechanical properties, including high strength, dimensional stability and optical clarity.

Bayer MaterialScience: New colour-stable PC film

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Under the name ‘Makrofol’ LP 209, Bayer MaterialScience, Germany ( www.bayermaterialscience.com ) has developed a polycarbonate film that, thanks to its special additive system, is said to be superior to other plastics used in medical applications. The company says its new film has the necessary colour stability, high impact strength and stiffness required to prevent yellowing when exposed to gamma radiation and electron beams. This high energy radiation is being used increasingly for sterilisation of instruments.

RAVEN INDUSTRIES: Expansion of Extrusion Capacity in Engineered Films

Thursday, February 2nd, 2006

Raven Industries, Inc. announced that it has finalized purchase orders totaling $7.5 million to expand its extrusion capacity in the Engineered Films Division (EFD) in Sioux Falls. This represents acceleration of an ongoing program to invest at least $8 million in EFD annually over the next three years. Total EFD investment plans for the fiscal year ending January 31, 2007 exceed $11 million. Raven President and CEO Ronald M. Moquist said, ‘We are following through with our commitment to invest in businesses that deliver outstanding returns, and Engineered Films certainly qualifies. This expansion will not only increase throughput capacity, but also widen our product offerings by allowing us to extrude seven-layer films. We currently provide protection from wind and moisture for construction applications. Seven-layer capabilities should allow us to develop films for industrial applications that provide a barrier against certain gases as well.’ The new equipment is expected to be operational by the end of October 2006.

Synseal: Expansion of facility

Thursday, February 2nd, 2006

Synseal, the UK’s leading PVC-u profile extruder, is to extend its site in the East Midlands with a new 10,000 sq metre warehouse and picking facility. To be completed in spring 2006, it will take the Sutton-in-Ashfield site to just under 60,000 sq metres in total. The investment follows closely on its acquisition of Essex-based profile extruder Permacell Finesse, which brought cellular PVC products such as cladding and soffits to the company’s product range, and propelled Synseal into the top spot among UK profile extruders. Other recent investments include four Battenfeld injection moulding machines that enabled to firm to bring its moulding requirements in-house. Synseal already extrudes all its own profile.

Boddingtons: Investment in new extrusion lines

Wednesday, February 1st, 2006

Boddingtons, the UK extruder of net and film products, is making a EURO 1.46m investment in new extrusion lines. An 18-month investment programme will see the Essex-based company install three new extruders. The largest is a Battenfeld machine with capacity of 700 kg per hour, while the other two will be smaller machines and will be installed later. Chief executive John Warner said: “We need additional capacity to meet the growth in our core drainage net business and also to have increased flexibility to meet the needs of a fast developing marketplace.” Boddingtons will have six extruders once the new ones are installed, and its capacity will be increased threefold, said business development manager Vaughan Williams. As well as extruded nets, the company produces blown film products for protection and identification of cables and pipelines and other industrial, agriculture and aquaculture applications.

Coperion: Know-how package for Polyolefin compounding

Wednesday, February 1st, 2006

Current developments, experiences in industrial applications and future challenges in the large-scale compounding of Polyolefins were the focus of attention at the recent “Polyolefin Technology Update” conference in Stuttgart/Germany, the corporate home of
Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer GmbH & Co. KG. The two day conference, now the sixth one organized by Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer, took place at the end of October and was entailing a total of 21 lectures, six of which were delivered by guest speakers, and a highly informative factory tour. Manfred Eiden, CEO of the Coperion Group, welcomed over 100 experts from 35 companies and from as many as 20 countries. The main themes of the conference were all aspects of extruder design from start to finish, from drive train technology through screw configuration and barrel design to melt pumps, pelletizers and pellet cooling units, as well as processing aspects in compounding of the different Polyolefin resins, increasing capacities for different Polyolefins –especially Polypropylene –, utilizing the new ZSK NT two-stage twin-screw compounder technology, specially designed for bimodal Polyethylene, and the ZSK applications
for reactor melt discharge and devolatizing for processing LDPE and EVA. Of particular interest to users of existing compounding lines were questions concerning spare parts availability and supply of replacement parts along with possible modernization and debottlenecking of their equipment. In his welcoming address, Manfred Eiden presented the Coperion Group as a healthy and wellestablished global player which, contrary to the current trend in the plastics processing machinery industry, can boast a remarkably upward development: sales in 2005, expected to reach November 2005 380 million Euros, will be 23% up compared to the previous year. The 27% growth in incoming
orders, which will reach 420 million Euros by the end of the year, makes this upward development even more pronounced.
Matthias Gronies, CEO of Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer GmbH & Co. KG, then gave a brief overview of the continuing technological progress made with the company’s large-capacity twinscrew compounding extruders. In barely five decades, the output of around 500 kg/hour (ZSK twin-screw compounder with 120 mm screw diameter in 1958) has risen to over 65,000 kg/hour today (ZSK MEGAcompounder with 380 mm screw diameter). The basis of this success lies in the optimum combination of process engineering, mechanical engineering and production engineering expertise, as can only be expected from such a technology-driven company as Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer. The economic success of this corporate philosophy is also reflected in the fact that
around 6,900 compounding systems have been supplied by Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer worldwide – this being approximately 25% of all compounding systems – and that over 75% of all plastics compounds have been developed and tested in Coperion’s own R&D facilities.

Licensing – an early indicator of changes in the market
The two introductory guest lectures dealt with important aspects of the global Polyolefin market. In his lecture “A Licensor’s View of the Polyolefin Market”, Dr. Kaspar Evertz, responsible at Basell for the licensing business, explained how licensing is an early indicator as to where production capacities will be established or expanded within the next five years. After only negligible growth during the last few years, the production capacity for PE and PP is currently starting to expand to such an extent that by 2008 to 2010 capacity growth will be in the region of 10% per year. As this expansion of capacity is taking place primarily in the Middle East and the Asian-Pacific region, Europe and North America are changing from being net exporters to net importers of Polyolefins.
The licensing market also indicates that higher-output machines are being planned. This
development is not all that serious in the case of polymerizing plants, but it poses quite a
challenge for Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer as manufacturer of compounding and palletizing systems. The second important aspect was addressed by Sergio Paggi, the responsible technology manager at Tecnimont for Petrochemicals, in his lecture “A Contractor’s View of the Polyolefin November 2005 Market”. In single line Polyolefin production systems, which enjoy wider acceptance for reasons of cost, the compounding and pelletizing systems constitute the main component. Here the machine manufacturer must take up the challenge of developing a high-performance extruder that is both
reliable and flexible. The medium-term requirement for increased output rate is only one of numerous different application-specific requirements. An example of such a requirement is the compounding of HDPE and LLDPE with the same compounding extruder; this also goes for unimodal and bimodal Polyethylene, or for Polyolefins produced conventionally or with metallocene catalysts. And when it comes to executing projects, the manufacturer will have to resolve the dilemma that, on the one hand, a compounding system has a long delivery time, on the other, its technical specifications are determined relatively late, and perhaps not until intensive trials have been carried out by the extruder manufacturer.

Innovations push performance limits to new heights
The conference was chaired by Klaus Kapfer, Head of Business Unit Polyolefin Compounding. As moderator he tied together all the speakers, from their detailed views to the overall picture and put individual advancements and improvements into the perspective and challenges of a modern world-scale Polyolefin compounding plant. Besides descriptions of the design and mode of operation of the ZSK MEGAcompounder, including precise explanations of the conveying, mixing
and shear elements of the screws, the lectures that followed dealt with a great many different themes, the main ones being:
Optimization of Coperion melt pumps in combination with the compounding extruder to reduce
energy input and hence ensuring gentle treatment of the melt while increasing the output rate.
The newly developed ZSK NT for the compounding of bimodal Polyethylene. This two-stage compounder features a relatively small extruder with a fast rotating screw (e.g. a ZSK 250 with a screw speed of up to 700 r.p.m.) for melting the polymer. The second-stage consists of a larger extruder with a slowly rotating screw (e.g. a ZSK 350 with a screw speed of 80 to 150 r.p.m.) for homogenizing the melt and building up the pressure for pelletizing. Thus the “plasticizing” and “homogenizing” stages of the process are performed under respectively optimum conditions while at the same time reducing energy input.
The use of the ZSK MEGAcompounder with low density Polyethylene (LDPE) and ethylenevinyl
acetate copolymer (EVA) for direct reactor discharge and devolatization of the polymer:
November 2005 the MEGAcompounder’s high output rate not only makes it a highly competitive extruder in comparison with existing systems but also offers additional advantages through its palletizing system. In a large-scale test carried out under realistic operating conditions for the duration of almost 1 ½ hours, a ZSK 380 achieved an output rate of 68 tonnes/hour.
The broad spectrum of themes addressed during this highly informative conference was rounded off by the other four guest speakers, whose lectures dealt with the demands for electric motors with up to 22 MW power for extruder drive systems, the necessity for accurate metering of all components in such high-capacity plants, the possibilities of online rheometry on high output compounding lines, and viscosity feedback control in the reactive compounding of PP.