Archive for June, 2006

Battenfeld Extrusionstechnik: “profile” with four lines

Wednesday, June 14th, 2006

About 220 customers accepted the invitation from Battenfeld Extrusionstech-nik GmbH, Bad Oeynhausen, Germany to attend the Open House on profile extrusion, which was staged at its subsidiary SMS Extrusion, Kempen on May 23 and 24. Wolfgang Studener, Managing Director and CEO of Battenfeld Ex-trusion, was pleased with the success of this event: ‘Our decision to demon-strate our expertise in all respects by showing four profile extrusion lines in full production has met with an enthusiastic response from our customers.’
This Open House was part of a series of events, by which Battenfeld Extrusion-stechnik is celebrating its 25th anniversary jointly with its customers. After several highly successful presentations had already taken place last fall, the topics being ‘aluminium composite pipe production’, ‘high-solution line’ and ‘film extrusion’, the Open House about ‘profile extrusion’ was now the first European event in 2006. The last event in this series, planned for June 2006, will be a demonstration of the ‘drip irrigation pipe’. Two more customer events will be staged at the facilities of the com-pany’s subsidiary Battenfeld Extrusion Systems in Shunde, China and at American Maplan Corp. in McPherson, U.S.A.
‘With these four lines which we are demonstrating today, we want to prove two points: first, that we supply complete systems from a single source for virtually all applications, and second, that it is also possible to manufacture a wide range of spe-cial products with our very attractively-priced standard equipment. The best example is our winBEX, equipped with a parallel twin-screw extruder, on which we are manu-facturing PVC profiles with wood fiber content. Of course, we take special pride in our new model, the techBEX, which we are presenting here in Kempen for the first time. techBEX lines are manufactured and assembled in our very successful Chi-nese subsidiary Battenfeld Extrusion Systems and then sold by us to the European market. For our customers, this means that they receive equipment in well-known Battenfeld quality at an enormously favorable price’, Wolfgang Studener summa-rized the highlights.
WPC extrusion with a standardized system
‘In contrast to our competitors, who frequently recommend extrusion systems spe-cially designed for processing wood-plastic composites, we have set out to prove that these alternative materials can also be processed with standard equipment’, Manfred Jäcker, Product Manager profile extrusion, explained. For this purpose, Bat-tenfeld Extrusionstechnik presented a standard line from the winBEX series in Kem-pen, equipped with a BEX 2-92-28 V parallel twin-screw extruder and the well-known matching downstream package. The die used was a conventional coextrusion die with a dry caliber and vacuum tank supplied by the Swiss company Fentech, which also delivered the material to be processed. A co-extruded window main profile was manufactured with a core consisting of 50% PVC and 50% wood pellets, covered by two layers of PVC. ‘We are sure that the reluctance of many processors to make WPC products will be overcome, once they can also use standard equipment for this purpose. In this way, we can contribute to making such products more widely known and more interesting’, Jäcker commented.
techBEX - the highlight
The new techBEX line celebrated its premiere at the Open House. This low-cost standard line for the production of small profiles and technical profiles is entirely manufactured and assembled in China and on offer worldwide. ‘Compared to other known standard lines, techBEX is about 30% cheaper, but nevertheless on a high technological level’, the profile extrusion product group manager emphasized. techBEX lines can be equipped with either the BCE 1-45-25 D single-screw extruder with an output of 40 kg/h, or the BCE 1-60-25 D laid out for about 60 kg/h. The downstream equipment includes a calibrating table, a belt haul-off, a saw or, alterna-tively, a cut-off knife and an ejection table. Battenfeld demonstrated this profile line in Kempen with an output of 20 kg/h and a line speed of 3 m/min. The article manufac-tured was a transparent light slot cover made from Styrolux, an impact-resistant type of polystyrene supplied by BASF. The die came from TMVK, Gladbeck, Germany.
Jäcker was highly gratified by the customers’ response to this new line. ‘We sold four of these lines on the spot. However, the product is so new that we cannot re-spond to all enquiries as quickly as our customers would like.’
Twin-strand miniBEX
‘Also for the first time today, we are presenting our miniBEX, another standard line, with a twin-strand process in response to a request from our customers’, Jäcker said.
With the miniBEX, Battenfeld Extrusionstechnik launched a series of standard extru-sion lines for manufacturing small profiles in 2002, which has since been sold more than 100 times. This was the starting point for developing further standard models, such as the winBEX for window main profiles, soon to be followed up by the bigBEX for large profiles, as well as the low-cost models techBEX and the new baseBEX for the medium performance range; the latter is still in planning. At the Open House, the 220 visitors witnessed a miniBEX line with a conical twin-screw extruder manufactur-ing two PVC glass strips at 5m/min with an output of 90 kg/h. The materials used were a type of PVC-U supplied by Ineos and stabilizing agents from Baerlocher. The die came from one of France’s leading toolmakers, France Filière Plastiques. ‘For the twin-strand variant, we have also used standard components, including the cali-bration table. To ensure a high degree of flexibility, the twin caterpillar haul-off and the twin saw can be adjusted independently’, the profile extrusion product group manager explained.
Specialized line for PVC guttering
In contrast to the three lines described above, the fourth line presented was not standard equipment, but a highly specialized solution. Jäcker commented: ‘Here we are showing a process well-known in the production of cable conduits or siding articles, this time applied to a new task, i.e. cost-efficient production of guttering.’ On this line, coextruded roof gutters were manufactured by means of the postforming process, with a UV coating being applied to the top side. ‘The great advantage of this process is its speed. While the average speed in conventional extrusion is approximately 5 m/min, up to 30 m/min can be achieved with this process’, Jäcker pointed out the benefit. At the Open House, the line operated with a speed of 17 m/min and an out-put of roughly 600 kg/h.
The specialty of the process shown is that, after leaving the extruder, the melt first passes through a strip die and then through a small roller calender. Only thereafter, the smoothed and optionally embossed band is guided through the forming tool and cooled. Here too, the material used was a type of PVC-U from Ineos with Baerlocher stabilizers, plus a masterbatch from Holland Colors. ‘This complete line has already been sold to a Polish company. B-Tec, Italy has kindly agreed to let us use the tool and the calibration unit for this demonstration.’
A successful event
Finally, Wolfgang Studener expressed his thanks and appreciation to the many part-ner firms who contributed to the overall success of this event by their uncomplicated support. These were also present with small information booths in the large assem-bly hall in Kempen, where a ‘guest room’ and a presentation area had been set up especially for this Open House. ‘A special thank-you goes to Reisner, who has sup-plied us with a complete cooling water system to provide cooling water for four lines running simultaneously’, the Managing Director emphasized.

RENOLIT AG: Purchase contract for company in Guangzhou

Wednesday, June 14th, 2006

RENOLIT AG, Worms, Germany, is active in the Asian market and on 31st of May 2006 signed a contract with the current shareholder, TinsChemical Corporation Ltd., Hong Kong, to purchase 100 per cent of the business shares in Guangzhou TinsPlastics Co., Ltd. in Guangzhou/China. Guangzhou TinsPlastics employs 164 people and in the 2005 business year generated sales of more than €25 million. At present, the company manufactures flexible technical films and specialties which are processed further to create products for office organisation and for niche applications and to create self-adhesive articles. The current production capacity amounts to 28,000 tons of film a year, most of which ends up in regional Chinese markets.
Gateway to South-East Asia
‘With this strategic step we want to prepare ourselves for the competition in the growth regions of Asia and the Pacific. We are beginning this process by establishing our own production facility and sales organisation to ensure that we are able to deliver directly to the strategically important customers in this region,’ says Michael Kundel, the board mem- ber at RENOLIT AG with responsibility for sales and marketing, in ex- plaining the new acquisition.
RENOLIT wants to expand its product range to include decorative surface films for the furniture and construction industry as well as the exist- ing range of flexible technical films. To assist this, the intention is to start further training measures and to adapt the production facilities in the short term to bring them up to the necessary technical standards. In the long term, further investments are planned. A decision on these investments will be taken on the basis of market trends.

Royal Group: US PVC maker to buy Royal Group

Tuesday, June 13th, 2006

PVC maker Georgia Gulf is to buy leading window profile manufacturer Royal Group of Toronto for a total of US$1.7bn. The companies reached agreement on the deal late last week, citing benefits from the vertical integration of the Atlanta-based resin maker with the downstream PVC user. The price for the take-over represents a premium of 43% over the price at which Royal group’s shares were trading prior to the Georgia Gulf move. With annual sales of around US$1.5bn., Royal Group tops the rankings of PVC window profile makers. The company has been up for sale for more than one year and local analysts had wondered whether a buyer would emerge for the Canadian firm, subject of regulatory probes into its practices. “We believe that the combination of Georgia Gulf and Royal Group will result in a formidable force in the vinyl products industry,” said Royal president and chief executive Lawrence Blanford. Georgia Gulf has a good track record of successfully integrating businesses, according to Ed Schmitt, chairman, president and chief executive.

NPE: Extruder Specialist Successful in the U.S

Tuesday, June 13th, 2006

Besides innovative extruders from the Alpha, Argos, Konos and Monos series a complete WPC line, of course in production, will be a center of attraction at Cincinnati Extrusion Inc. at this year’s NPE in Chicago. With more than 100 lines already in operation around the world producing wood-fiber-filled plastics, Cincinnati Extrusion Inc. ranks among the most experienced and best-known machine manufacturers in this industry.
‘Cincinnati Extrusion - THE ORIGINAL - is back’, this could summarize the com-pany’s last fiscal year in the U.S. After the ban on sales to America - imposed by contractual agreement with Milacron when the SMS group acquired Milacron’s extru-sion business - expired on January 1, 2005, Cincinnati Extrusion has already real-ized almost 10 million Euros in sales in the U.S., starting from zero. According to the extruder specialist, this is the most convincing evidence that the Cincinnati Extrusion brand stands for extruders for the profile, pipe and sheet industry that are in line with the market.
Proven technology for alternative applications
WPCs for outdoor applications such as decking and fencing have been established for a considerable time, especially in America. With its Fiberex line, Cincinnati is demonstrating new aspects of wood extrusion, such as complex geometries, extru-sion with humidity balancing, compounds with 75% wood filler content for indoor ap-plications. Cincinnati has specially developed the Fiberex series and continuously optimized it for WPC processing. With the fourth generation of Fiberex a modern ex-truder generation is available, which can fulfill virtually any customer requirements and is capable of a high output. At the NPE, Cincinnati will demonstrate a complete Fiberex pilot line with a Fiberex T58 extruder and an output of 440 lbs/h, on which a PP compound with 75% wood filler content will be processed. The line will manufac-ture a profile for the furniture industry with 2.5 mm wall thickness at 2 m/min calibra-tion speed. In addition to the Fiberex T 58 extruder, a total of 8 models with an out-put of up to 2750 lbs/h are available for WPC processing.

Alpha and Monos-37D single-screw extruders
Another eye-catcher on the NPE booth will be the Alpha tower, which has already become a tradition. Here, the machine manufacturer will show its bestseller, the Al-pha single-screw extruder. Since this standardized extruder, which is tailor-made for profile extrusion, was launched about five years ago, Cincinnati Extrusion has al-ready sold more than 300 Alphas. The two extruder models Alpha 45 and Alpha 60 are available as cash & carry products directly ex works from Cincinnati Extrusion U.S.A. at set prices of 33,600 US $ and 39,800 US $ respectively. Apart from attrac-tive pricing and short lead times; these extruders are noted for their advanced tech-nology, which of course meets today’s requirements.

From the latest series of its high-performance Monos single-screw extruders with an extremely long processing unit of 37 D, the Monos 90 with a performance of up to 2210 lbs/h will be exhibited in Chicago. This extruder series lends itself especially to the production of gas and sewage pipes from PE 80, PE 100 or PP-HM, and in gen-eral for all applications demanding high melt quality at low melt temperatures.
Argos and Konos twin-screw extruders
With the Konos 50, Cincinnati Extrusion is presenting a model from its latest genera-tion of conical twin-screw extruders. The four extruder models 38, 50, 63 and 72 of this series are noted for a combination of sturdy, high-performance drives with an extra-long processing unit, with which they achieve about 20% more throughput than their predecessor models from the Titan series. This extruder series is known for a wide processing window, being equally suitable for processing materials sensitive to shearing stress and for operating at high pressure levels. In addition to other process advantages, such as removal of the screw from the rear and the maintenance-free Intracool screw temperature control system, Konos extruders offer an excellent price/performance ratio. Currently Konos extruders are the most cost-efficient, com-pact and versatile conical extruders in their respective performance categories.
Finally, Argos 93 is a sample from Cincinnati Extrusion’s parallel twin-screw extruder series. Argos extruders are ideally suited for the production of pipes and sheet as well as profiles, such as window main profiles. They are specially designed to meet the requirements of the industry and feature high torque, which is provided by the extremely durable, high-performance 4-shaft gearbox. A great variety of screw ge-ometries are available to manufacture the full range of products from simple pipes and profiles and specialized parts up to functional multi-layer products, and including semi-finished products with high filler content. All Argos screws are equipped either with the maintenance-free, self-adjusting Intracool screw temperature control system or an active screw temperature control system.
Extruserve
Moreover, Cincinnati Extrusion offers replacement screws and barrels for all com-mon twin-screw extruder models on the market. Of course, these come with indi-vidually adjusted or proven existing geometries. Top-quality manufacturing ensures a long service life. As examples, some screws with the latest molybdenum plasma powder coating will be on display at the booth.

Borealis: BorPEX™ underscores winning performance in football

Monday, June 12th, 2006

Eight of the twelve German stadiums hosting this year’s world football championships are benefiting from a pitch heating system based on BorPEX™ material from
Borealis, a leading provider of innovative value creating plastics solutions. Rehau®, one of the most diversified plastic processors in the world, chose BorPEX for
crosslinked polyethylene (PE-X) based pipes to prevent pitches from freezing during the winter. These tough and flexible pipes help prevent match postponements,
eliminate the higher injury risk related to playing on hard, iced-up ground and accelerate the post-winter recovery of pitches. As a result of the installations, the
German 2005/2006 football season was allowed to continue uninterrupted throughout the winter, finishing earlier than normal to assist preparations for the tournament.
As an additional plus for installation engineers, the combined flexibility and toughness of BorPEX improves handling of finished pipes and allows for straight-forward, fast installation according to specific pitch design requirements. Continuous production using the peroxide crosslinking (PE-Xa) process assists ease of production and ensures consistent, high-quality piping. The good high and low temperature performance of BorPEX reduces the potential for pipe stiffness during winter, making installation easier and preventing any damage to the pipe itself both during installation and when under the ground surface.
Thorsten Wiggenhagen, Team Leader for Rehau‘s sub-surface heating/cooling business, confirms the success of the pitch heating system: “Our sports ground
system delivers ideal playing conditions and has proven highly successful in practice, having demonstrated its reliability in more than 200,000 m2 of installations around the world to date. We chose BorPEX for our system because of the highly durable yet flexible characteristics it gives to PE-X piping, ensuring long-term operation at both high and low temperatures, and ease of installation.”
Norbert Jansen, Application Marketing Manager for Borealis’ pipe business, adds: “The success of Borealis’ BorPEX product range for the manufacture of high quality PE-X pipes can be attributed in part to its coverage of all three commercial crosslinking technologies – peroxide, irradiation and silane crosslinking. The specific tailoring of our products to meet each technology means that efficient pipe production and superior pipe quality can be achieved which, as demonstrated by our pipe solutions for Rehau, helps our customers meet the demanding requirements of numerous international standards and regulations. ”

Davis Standard: New HPE Extruder Excels in Size, Performance and Delivery

Monday, June 12th, 2006

The new HPE (high performance) extruder line from Davis-Standard, LLC exemplifies processor demands with a small footprint, performance features and a fast delivery for coextrusion and multi-layer applications. Introduced in March as a replacement for the D-S H and D-S A series extruders, the HPE is available in an adjustable vertical or horizontal configuration in sizes ranging from 3/4-inch (19mm) to 1 3/4 inches (44mm). This extruder model utilizes a direct drive motor versus belts and sheaves for improved operation, and is built on a smaller footprint than previous designs to enable close proximity to the common die.
Another advantage of the HPE is the fast delivery. In stock extruders can be delivered in one to two weeks from order placement. For all non-stock machines, the delivery target is three to four weeks. Davis-Standard utilizes common components such as gearcases, feedsections and barrels on both the horizontal and adjustable models. The HPE has been well received by processors, as Davis-Standard has already sold several machines in various sizes.
For more information, contact Wendell Whipple at [email protected]

Overcapacity hurts BOPP film market

Thursday, June 8th, 2006

World demand for biaxially oriented polypropylene (BOPP) film has grown by 8.5% per annum, or 1.4 million tpa, over the past five years. It reached an estimated 4.27 million tonnes in 2005, according to a report by market analysis firm PCI Films Consulting.
It expects demand for BOPP film to continue to grow by 5.9% per annum to reach 5.7 million tpa by 2010. Asian demand is expected to account for more than two thirds of world growth over the next five years and 57% of capacity additions (world capacity growth is forecast at 12%).
The report also found that BOPP film producers have been more than keeping pace with demand, having installed an additional 2.39 million tpa over the last five years.
Around 62% of this incremental capacity was commissioned by China, resulting in significant oversupply in some regions increasing competitor activity.
The report warned: “World BOPP film producers face an uncertain future with profits and volumes severely under threat. Clear strategies for meeting these challenges are essential for survival.”

Freefoam: Purchase of Permacell PVC profile range

Thursday, June 8th, 2006

Freefoam: Purchase of Permacell PVC profile range
Freefoam Plastics has bought the Permacell product range in the UK from the administrator appointed to the PVC profile extruder last month. Previous owner Synseal Holdings placed Permacell Finesse into administration after a poor performance at the subsidiary it acquired for E15m in September 2005.
Freefoam has not revealed the price it paid for the Permacell tooling and product rights. The profile products, including window trim, will be branded as Freefoam products and will be available shortly. The company said it was a significant move for Freefoam as the acquisition widens its current range of window trim products and complements its roofline range. Freefoam managing director Tony Walsh said: “We faced strong competition in acquiring this attractive range so it is extremely satisfying for Freefoam that we can offer these products to the marketplace.” The addition of Permacell products will allow Freefoam to expand its offering to PVC profile stockists, the company said.

Nordenia: Expansion of film products for hygiene industry

Wednesday, June 7th, 2006

Film conversion group Nordenia International is to invest more than E30.3m this year as part of the growth strategy agreed with its new major shareholder. Oaktree Capital Management of the US took control of Nordenia, headquartered in Greven, Germany, in January. This year’s investment level has doubled in comparison with 2005. Of the total, E15.5m will be spent on a capacity expansion at the German production site in Gronau and the remainder invested at other sites in Germany, the US, Spain, Hungary, Poland and Russia. The main focus of the investment programme is manufacturing of products for the hygiene industry. Chairman of the executive board of Nordenia, Ralph Landwehr, said: “It is here that we see above-average growth potential and this is why we are expanding our capacities even further. In addition, we will strengthen our position as a provider of quality products.” The company’s product segments include label films, surface protection films and consumer packaging.

Uponor: Sale of its sewer pipe business in Germany and the Czech Republic

Wednesday, June 7th, 2006

Uponor yesterday divested its non-core central European gravity sewer pipe business, including the business and assets of Uponor Anger GmbH, based in Marl, Germany, and its shareholding in its subsidiary company,
Uponor Czech s.r.o., to the German company, Maincor GmbH & Co KG. Uponor Anger manufactures and markets infrastructure products for the German and Czech markets. The divested business, part of the Uponor
Europe - WES region, had annual net sales of EUR 25m in 2005. The deal will have a negative impact of about EUR 3m on Uponor’s second quarter earnings. No further financial details have been disclosed.

The divested businesses employ around 80 people in Germany and the Czech Republic, and they will all transfer to the new owner. The divestment is consistent with the Uponor strategy of concentrating
its infrastructure business on areas where it is possible to attain a leading market position in the medium term. Withdrawal from the central European gravity business will have no direct impact on the IE business in the UK or the Nordic countries.