Archive for September, 2006

Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer: Order for world-scale Polypropylene compounding plant

Thursday, September 28th, 2006

Yet another milestone in the development of Polypropylene (PP) compounding and pelletizing systems has been reached by Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer GmbH & Co. KG, Stuttgart: this German company will soon be delivering a plant to the Near East with a guaranteed throughput rate of 72 tonnes/hour. Compared to the hitherto largest PP compounding and pelletizing plant, likewise built by Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer and giving service in Poland’s largest petrochemical site in Plock, this new plant will represent a further considerable increase in capacity. This contract represents yet another confirmation of Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer’s worldwide technology and market leadership in the manufacture of world-scale plants for Polyolefin compounding. The customer is a renowned engineering company serving mainly chemical and petrochemical companies in all parts of the world. As a leading contractor for polymerization plants for Polyolefins, this company has already delivered and installed over 70 Polypropylene compounding and pelletizing lines for operation in its customers’ plants.
The nucleus of the PP compounding and pelletizing plant is a ZSK 380 twin-screw compounder featuring 380 mm diameter screws. This compounder, which has already proved itself in numerous PP and PE applications, is equipped with a variable speed drive that has a total power output of 19 megawatts – a first in PP compounding. A Suprex superpositioning planetary gear unit combines the outputs of a 14 MW fixed speed motor and a 5 MW variable speed motor, making screw speeds of between 193 and 276 rpm possible. This gives the ZSK 380 MEGAcompounder a large operating window, permitting the compounding and pelletizing of PP
grades of varying viscosity at high throughput rates with a minimum possible energy input.
Considering the extremely high throughput rate requirement, Coperion Werner & Pfleiderer have also developed two new components of discharge equipment based on existing, service-proven systems:
Located immediately downstream of the compounding extruder is the enlarged SWZ 21000 screen changer, which removes all foreign bodies and impurities from the melt and permits a fully automatic screen change – 21,000 cm² effective filtration area – while the plant continues to operate.
The throughput rate of 72 tonnes/hour necessitated the development of the high-capacity UG 925 underwater pelletizer. Being used for the first time with PP, this pelletizing system is based on the UG 1000, a pelletizer that has already proved itself in PE applications, and is equipped with an intensively heated pelletizing die.

Delivery and commissioning of the compounding and pelletizing plant is planned for the second half of 2007.

Davis-Standard: Jump in Reclaim Equipment Sales

Thursday, September 28th, 2006

Strong market conditions in the reprocessing sector have resulted in an increase of reclaim equipment sales for Davis-Standard, LLC over the past two years. The company has seen a rise in inquiries and North American sales for its single screw ram stuffer extruder and Scrapper® dual-diameter extruders as well as the Merritt Cascade System. According to Steve Kriger, Davis-Standard’s reclaim product manager, sales have been strong due to the high price of resin, environmental concerns and a strong product offering.
“The price of resin has been a key factor in companies wanting to reclaim more of the waste produced in generating their products. It is also a very positive trend from an environmental perspective. Most of our customers are buying machines to reclaim film, foam and injection molded scrap.” He added, “With the addition of the Merritt brand to our product offering last summer, we have even more to offer customers in the way of extruders and complete systems for reprocessing post industrial and post consumer waste materials such as low and high bulk density scrap, lightweight feedstocks, printed scrap and rolled scrap.”
Davis-Standard can build reclaim extruders to process materials at rates from 50 to 10,000 pounds (23 to 4,545 kg) per hour. Equipment is available for upstream material preparation, storage and feeding, as well as downstream pellet collection. Feedscrews can be custom designed to accommodate a range of materials.
The addition of Merritt technology has expanded Davis-Standard’s reclaim product line. The Merritt Cascade System provides a cost-effective venting solution for reclaiming materials and producing high quality pellets by removing moisture and ink levels from raw materials such as PE, Nylon, PET and PP. The Merritt Polycycle® System is an all-in-one system equipped with a ram feeder or wide mouth feed to reprocess waste from scrap to pellet.
For more information about Davis-Standard’s reclaim solutions, contact Steve Kriger at [email protected] or Sandy Guthrie at [email protected]er.com.

Rexam: Five Davis-Standard Extruders to Union, Mo. Plant

Wednesday, September 27th, 2006

Rexam, a world leader in consumer packaging solutions, recently installed five Davis-Standard Thermatic® extruders at its plant in Union, Missouri. The extruders, ranging in size from 2 inches (50mm) to 130mm, included screen changers, melt pumps and control systems. Rexam, a Davis-Standard customer for 20 years, has purchased 15 Thermatic extruders over the past four years to address increased production. The extruders are used for manufacturing multilayer sheet used in barrier containers for the shelf-stable food market. The Union plant is Rexam’s only U.S. facility within the company to produce these types of containers and serve this market.
“I have worked with Davis-Standard on our last three line installations starting in since 2002. The people are professional, the equipment is delivered in a timely fashion and start-up services are excellent,” said Mark Borzillo, production engineering manager at Rexam’s Union, Mo. facility. “Our goal is to run as many quality parts as possible within a 24-hour period, seven days a week, year round. Our Davis-Standard equipment has performed very well under these conditions.”
Borzillo especially appreciates the advanced control technology supplied with the extruders. This enables Rexam to maintain stable operating conditions and simplifies troubleshooting and maintenance procedures. It also provides flexibility in changeovers and improves changeover time. Rexam appreciates the consistency and quality of the extruded sheet, which is then thermoformed into the finished product.
“We can always count on high quality sheet from our Davis-Standard extruders. This is important in supporting our commitment to quality, availability and service,” added Borzillo.
Worldwide, Rexam serves the beverage, beauty, pharmaceuticals and food markets with around 100 manufacturing operations in more than 20 countries. The company is based in the UK. For more information about Rexam, visit www.rexam.com. For more information about Davis-Standard’s sheet extrusion technology, contact Al ---bacher at [email protected]

RTP Company: Acquisition of Customized Plastic Film Manufacturer Wiman Corporation

Wednesday, September 27th, 2006

RTP Company announced it has acquired Wiman Corporation, a leading manufacturer of customized plastic film for the medical, industrial and consumer markets. This acquisition will enhance RTP Company’s leadership position in the plastics industry by combining its existing Sheet Division with Wiman’s complete line of flexible plastic film products and extrusion capabilities.
‘Wiman strengthens our business position in the sheet and film industry by letting us manufacture down to 4 mil film, and quite importantly we will now be adding PVC to our product mix,’ said Hugh Miller, President and CEO of RTP Company. ‘We feel these new capabilities, plus the synergies created by combining our technical resources, will be of great benefit to our customers.’
Wiman Corporation President Peter Ploumidis said, ‘With this acquisition, we gain RTP Company’s marketing and selling infrastructure and international capabilities, in addition to its unique material technologies.’
Leading the way in the development of specialty films using PVC, Polyolefins and Polyurethane, Wiman serves a niche market for companies requiring specialty runs and products such as helmet liners - often in quantities far lower than the industry standards. The Wiman products are unique in their construction and abilities to formulate the plastic to the customers’ needs.
RTP Company, headquartered in Winona, Minnesota, is a global leader in specialty thermo-plastic compounding. The company has seven manufacturing plants on three continents, plus sales representatives throughout North America, Europe, and Asia/Pacific. RTP Company’s engineers develop and produce custom compounds in over 60 different engineering resin systems for applications requiring color, conductivity, flame retardancy, high temperature, structural, elastomeric and wear resistant properties.

Masterflex AG: AirWay Management Project LaryVent™

Tuesday, September 26th, 2006

Masterflex AG, the Germany-based specialist in developing and processing high-tech plastics for industrial and medical applications, is presenting its project, LaryVent™, at the conference ‘Investment In Innovation (In3) EAST: A Preview of Early-Stage Medical Technology Companies’ at Boston, Mass., The Westin Copley Place Hotel, October 18-20, 2006.
LaryVent™ is an innovative disposable, latex-free, supraglottic AirWay Management device, easy to insert, and prevents under any intra-operative situation stomach insufflation. Further more, it does debar aspiration in case of passive regurgitation. The next step will be to establish a stomach tube to enable stomach fluid to exit, and through this to amplify market opportunity tremendously. LaryVent™ does address uses in elective surgery and diagnostics, as well as emergency medicine. In the first step it will cover patients with a body weight of 30 kg and more, and further expand its program into pediatrics.
As part of an Advanced Technology Program, LaryVent™ has been developed over the past four years at Masterflex. Strategic partners with high competencies get the opportunity to step into the project and to push a global medical devices technology into the market.
‘We at Masterflex are excited to bring this revolutionary technology to market. The patented design of the LaryVent™ offers clinicians a unique alternative to endotracheal intubation in cases forced to introduce increased respiratory pressure. The introduction of the LaryVent™ will further change the AirWay Management market towards less invasive technologies, avoiding the use of muscle relaxants or neuromuscular blockers in operations given, e.g., obesity, using laparoscopy surgery or in belly-down position,’ said Daniel Oser, Business Development Manager at Masterflex.
About the Company
Masterflex AG, D-Gelsenkirchen, was founded in 1987. With a large number of patents and innovations, the company is today the international technology leader in high tech hose systems for industrial sectors. Its expertise lies in the processing of specialist polymers, in particular polyurethane (PUR). In its business area, Medical Technology Masterflex offers medical devices and operation sets. Since 2001, Masterflex AG has also been successfully developing hydrogen-based PEM (proton exchange membrane) fuel cells in low output ranges. Masterflex AG profits from a far-reaching network of partners from research institutions and companies, ensuring its technological edge.

DuPont: European innovations in packaging recognized at nineteenth DuPont Awards Ceremony

Tuesday, September 26th, 2006

There was a strong European contingent among the winners of the 19th DuPont Awards Competition, announced during an awards ceremony held in Philadelphia (USA) in August. Tetra Pak, represented by its subsidiaries in Sweden and Switzerland, was one of the major winners of the evening: the company received a prestigious Diamond Award – presented to the most innovative projects – for its development of the world’s first aseptic transparent stand-up-pouch, the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Clear 200 S. The company was also presented with a Silver Award for its low acid aseptic microwaveable carton, the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Microwaveable 200 S.
Meanwhile, RPC beauté (formerly Crown Risdon) of France came away with two Gold Awards for innovations in the processing and printing of polymer packaging used in Lancôme cosmetic products. Amcor Flexibles Drammen in Norway was a recipient of a Silver Award for the Amcor FlexCan, whilst the German company Seufert Transparente Verpackungen GmbH received a special citation from the judges for its developments in transparent packaging for Nestle chocolates. Overall, twenty-six international food and non-food packaging innovations received awards from a total of 135 entries, around 20 of which came from Europe.
The Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Clear 200 S was especially designed by Diamond Award winners’ Tetra Pak for children’s on-the-go drinks. The package, still in market development, has a unique soft and squishy feel and see-through look, which 6-12-year-olds find fun and cool, according to market research in North America and Europe. The aseptic process ensures convenient, safe and portable products with high quality taste and nutritional value without the need for preservatives or hot filling.
A further product of the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic range, the Tetra Wedge™ Aseptic Microwavable 200 S, was winner of a second, Silver Award for Tetra Pak. Designed to heat either sweet or savoury sauces in microwave ovens, consumer studies have proven it is sturdier and easier to handle and pour from than stand-up plastic pouches typically used to heat ready-made sauces. The core innovation uses PET film coated with a plasma deposition of SiOx imbedded in a paper laminate to enable microwaving of high quality culinary sauces and still have the package comfortable to hold and serve even with hot contents. It is also one of the most sustainable microwaveable packages on the market with over 70 percent of content made with renewable materials.
The first of France-based company RPC beauté’s Gold Awards was for its use of bi-injection and electroplating for the cap of the Lancôme - Color Fever lipstick case. Bi-injected and then electroplated in Shiny White Bronze finish, the cap’s materials are selected in such a way that the cap is translucent and metallic looking, with a crisp frontier and a high quality look. The solution developed by RPC beauté requires a complete mastering of the bi-injection and overmoulding processes, and of the electroplating process. In addition, it requires an ability to define the almost appropriate resin to fulfill highly specific constraints. The resulting package allows for greater aesthetics, quality and ease of use at a more affordable price.
The same company’s adoption of innovative processes in the production of the cap for the Lancôme fragrance Hypnose, resulting in reduced cycle times, saw it win its second Gold Award. By tampo-printing a layer of silver ink to the top of the cap using a special ink containing metallic pigments, RPC beauté was able to create a plate backing in a silver mirror-like finish, visible through a clear DuPont™ Surlyn® resin, without any visible glue or fixation mode. In addition, because the fragrance caps are substantially heavy and require a long cycle time, RPC beauté met production capacity specified by Lancôme by implementing a proprietary technique that reduces the cycle time of massive parts made of Surlyn®, which subsequently reduces by the same proportion the number of moulds and machines involved. Amcor FlexCan, an easy-open and recloseable stand-up container, ideal for products that are typically not finished in one serving or use, won a Silver Award for Amcor Flexibles Drammen in Norway. A special peelable lapseal PE makes it easy to open whilst an adhesive tape provides recloseability. A wide opening makes it easy for the consumer to get a handful of nuts directly from the pack, or pour some of the contents into a bowl. For added aesthetic appeal, the design allows the packaging to be printed on all sides, including the bottom and top.
Recipient of a special citation award from the judges was the German company Seufert Transparente Verpackungen GmbH. It developed and implemented a new material and shape for the Nestle Box which includes transparent packaging for the chocolates to better attract consumers. The upper seal is designed in such a way that it consists of four identical latches ensuring effortless packing and removal of its contents.
The DuPont Awards for innovation in food processing and packaging technology is an international industry competition, inaugurated in 1986. It recognises industry innovations that utilise plastic packaging materials in food and non-food categories. The food category rewards advancements from all parts of the food chain, which are made possible, or more productive, by the use of plastic packaging. The non-food category acknowledges innovations that use plastic packaging in industrial, cosmetic, medical or other non-food-related industries. Entries are evaluated on degree of innovation, breadth of application, significance/impact on industry or consumers, marketing innovation of the packaged product and impact of the packaging on consumer or industry buying decisions. Entries are judged by an international panel of qualified experts representing food processing and packaging industries, graphics experts, equipment suppliers, academia, the trade press and governmental, environmental and trade organizations.
‘The high number of entries received this year reflects the sustained interest in the Awards among the packaging industry’, says Heike van de Kerkhof, Global Director DuPont Packaging Solutions. ‘We are proud that our award scheme has become a globally recognised showcase of packaging innovation.”

Songwon: New strategic approach and increased commitment to the Polymer Industry

Monday, September 25th, 2006

Songwon announced today the completion of its strategic review and a number of related initiatives which will be a quantum leap in its commitment to the polymer industry. Songwon Industrial Co., Ltd., with manufacturing facilities in Ulsan South Korea, is a major producer of antioxidants and is serving the global markets indirectly through a distribution agreement with Clariant. Songwon began producing additives for the PVC industry in the mid 1960’s and antioxidants for the polymer industry in the mid 1980’s.

The strategic initiatives include:
• The investment in a second manufacturing site for the production of phenolic and phosphite antioxidants. The new facility will be located approximately two miles from the existing facility and will be completely independent of the original plant. Consistent with the approach Songwon has employed in the existing operations, the new plant will include the back integration into key raw materials and intermediates and is being built on the anticipation of the needs of the announced expansions in the Polymer Markets.

• The extension of the global product range to include Hindered Amine Light Stabilizers (HALS), Benzotriazole UV Light Absorbers, and key niche antioxidants to serve specific application needs. The new product lines will be marketed under the brand names Songlight™, Songsorb™, and Songnox™.

• The establishment of direct channels to serve the global markets. Following the establishment of Matsubara Bussan Co., Ltd. in Japan and Shanghai Songwon Brilliant Chemicals Co., Ltd. in China, Songwon International AG has been operational from July 1, 2006 covering EMEA and Americas.

• The vision is to grow into the position of a preferred solution provider by bringing value to the customers with a secure and efficient supply of essential chemicals, the extended product range and physical form capability, and the application expertise to provide the appropriate solution for the application and markets served.

Kyung-Jae Park, Chairman and CEO of Songwon Industrial, stated “We have decided that it is vital and strategically necessary to be present directly in the global markets and to modify our business models accordingly. In spite of a long and successful relationship with Clariant, the two companies have agreed not to renew the existing distributorship agreement after the natural expiration date. During the transition period through the end of 2007, our direct sales force will co-exist in the market with our distributor sales team. Songwon International and Clariant will work together to ensure a seamless transition.”

Jongho Park, President and COO of Songwon Industrial, added, “Songwon has committed $120 million to the design, construction, and initial operation of the new plant. The project will be executed in two phases. The first phase which should be completed 2Q’07 will bring Songwon’s Antioxidant Production capacity to approximately 55,000 metric tons, representing a 60% increase over today’s capability. The first phase investment is designed to support a second phase of expansion which Songwon will implement as the market conditions require. Consistent with Songwon philosophy, the back integration into the key raw materials and intermediates brings value to our customers and enhances security of supply, control of quality, and efficiency. The technology employed in the new facility represents the culmination of 25 years of experience and continuous improvement in the manufacture of the polymer stabilizers beginning with raw materials, through key intermediates, all the way through to the final physical forms.”

Maurizio Butti, President of Songwon International added, “Songwon fully understood and recognized the value of a full product line of Polymer Stabilizers. This provides efficiencies in the supply chain and a single point of contact for our customers. Songwon and Songwon International recognize the global needs of our major customers and therefore have decided to extend Songwon’s Asian offering into the global markets. The first launch in the EMEA and the Americas will take place in September 2006 and will include the Songlight™ range of Hindered Amine Light Stabilizers and the Songsorb™ range of UV light absorbers. Additional Songnox™, Songlight™ and Songsorb™ specialty products will be added in 2007 to fill special application needs”.

Chairman Park concluded, “After 40 years of consistent and continuous growth, these steps represent the natural evolution and the commitment of Songwon in the global market. The challenges ahead present opportunities for us to serve our valuable customers. We look forward to meeting the challenges and succeeding in the implementation of our strategic plans.”

Davis-Standard: XP Express Well-Received by Sheet and Film Processors

Monday, September 25th, 2006

The pre-engineered XP Express™ roll stand system from Davis-Standard, LLC is gaining momentum in the sheet and packaging film markets. Davis-Standard has built and sold six XP Express systems over the past few months with dozens of inquiries in the works. The system, introduced in late 2005, is attractive to processors because of a competitive price, fast delivery and versatile design. The
XP Express is equipped for the full range of sheet and packaging applications, including capabilities for lamination, solution coating, auxiliary cooling, slitting and trimming, embossing and protective film.
“The interest level is very high for this system because of its ease of access and operating features such as dynamic nip force (PLI) control,” explained Al ---bacher, business area manager for Davis-Standard’s sheet systems. “We’ve received very positive feedback from customers and anticipate that we’ll have several more of these systems in the field shortly.”
The first customer to purchase and install the XP Express, Solarium de Paris of Québec, Canada, is using the system to manufacture flexible PVC window film in widths up to 34 inches (860mm) in two colors and with a thickness of 0.020 mil. According to Jacques Hébert, Solarium de Paris project manager, the XP Express has enabled their company to improve control over cooling, polishing and thickness of the finished product. “Each roll on the system has individual pumps, heat transfer units, electric motors and compressed air control, which improves consistency and product quality,” said Hebert. “We’ve also been pleased with the consistent throughput rates and operator safety features including the roll change mechanism and hands-free roll gap and load control system.”
The XP Express is equipped with high-speed features for thin gauge applications and has the capacity for temperatures up to 800 degrees Fahrenheit. It can be configured in an upstack, downstack, offset top or offset bottom arrangement with roll cooling for three, four or five rolls. The design meets or exceeds all current safety requirements. Custom models are available for both custom sheet applications (“CS”) and packaging applications (“PS”). Optional equipment includes hot melt laminating unwinds, protective film let-offs, sheet stress relief systems, post embossing assemblies, web solution applicators, thickness measurement systems, edge trim and multi-lane slitting devices, and auxiliary web cooling systems among others.
For more information about the XP Express, contact Al ---bacher at [email protected]

Vestolit: Management now has stake in Vestolit.

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Ownership of Vestolit, the 400,000tpa PVC manufacturer based at Marl, in Germany, is changing in a deal due for completion by the end of the year. Strategic Value Partners, a private equity company based in Greenwich, Connecticut, together with company management, have agreed to buy the shareholding held by a financial consortium led by Candover for an undisclosed sum. The new owners plan to commit more than €100m over the next three years to expand the business. New membrane technology for chlorine and additional PVC capacity, to take it beyond the 400,000tpa mark, have been made priorities. The deal has been welcomed by Vestolit ceo Dr Arno Knebelkamp who says the company aims to expand its position in the European market. Strategic Value Partners holds investments valued at $3.5bn and employs 90 people. The company says that it plans to secure Vestolit’s “top European position” based on the integrated PVC production centre at Marl.

Ticona: Force Majeure on GUR® UHMW-PE Products Manufactured in Europe

Tuesday, September 19th, 2006

Ticona, the engineering polymers business of Celanese Corporation, has declared force majeure on GUR UHMW-PE products manufactured in Europe as a result of an outside supplier’s inability to supply full rates of ethylene, the key raw material. The situation will affect all GUR UHMW-PE products manufactured from the Oberhausen, Germany facility through at least the end of October 2006. Ticona sales and marketing representatives will contact all customers to advise them of any potential impact.