“Many products get their outstanding quality solely through the special properties of their materials” was the unanimous opinion of the jurors in the iF material award 2011, held during the first day of the Interpack in Düsseldorf.
Sustainable materials, renewable resources, green design, are the central themes in the area of innovative and future-oriented materials. These important aspects also played a crucial role in the iF material award 2011. The jury summarized their impressions thus: “Most innovations in the area of materials are the results of experimenting with biological and recyclable materials. It has become obvious that recyclability, sustainability and the responsible use of resources have become a crucial economic factor. “Green design” is no longer a student-only subject or a niche category. It has definitely arrived in the industry.”
We will have a look at the iF Award winners while we visit the Interpack. Here are the impressions of the second day.
Roll N Blow
Serac presents a world exclusive, an innovative and economic technology for the manufacturing of bottles from a plastic sheet. The Bottle Thermoforming machine ‘Roll N Blow’ of the French start-up Agami, allows producing bottles at a cost and a material weight much lower than the conventional methods. It is based on an innovative technology of tubular thermoforming from a plastic sheet in reel. This technology authorizes high and round shapes for a volume from 100 to 500 ml. It addresses the fresh dairy products industry and more particularly drinking yoghurts, and fruit juices.
The raw material comes in the form of plastic sheeting. This sheeting is then cut into strips, and each strip is shaped into a tube around a blow pipe. Each strip is then welded lengthwise and the resulting plastic tube is heated and blown into a mould, in order to create the bottle.
Many types of plastic can be used in thermoforming such as PS, PP, PLA and PET. Using multilayer materials has tangible benefits, as films are extruded flat. Producing very wide plastic films, which are extruded flat at high speed, is also very economical. The plastic is converted from sheet into bottles in the machine, which generates savings of 30% to 50%.
The Roll N Blow thermoforming machine can produce up to 7,000 bottles per hour.
Aisacan hot fill bottle
Aisapack of Switzerland launches a single serve beverage format that the company believes will revolutionize the packaging of hot fill drinks such as juices and sports drinks.
The new Aisacan has been created to enable drinks manufacturers to offer a point of differentiation and a new consumption experience for consumers. At the same time, the pack’s unique format – comprising rigid top and base sections with a flexible multilayer laminated film for the main body – offers valuable sustainability benefits over traditional PET and glass bottles.
Production of the Aisacan has been adapted from Aisapack’s technology for toothpaste tubes. The shoulder and base are injection moulded and, together with pre-printed laminated film supplied by Huhtamaki, assembled in an Aisapack ACM1 machine.
The bottle’s flexible main body offers improved grip, due to its ability to mould to the shape of individual hands, and its smaller opening helps to avoid spillages, both of which make it an ideal format for on-the-go drinking. Its squeezability offers the ability to control and hasten the flow of the drink.
In terms of its environmental impact, the new Aisacan has distinct advantages over both hot fill and aseptic PET bottles being up to 60% lighter. Together with associated transportation benefits, this equates to a Carbon Footprint reduction for a 330ml bottle of 53% compared with PET hot fill and 36% compared with PET aseptic.
Direct Drive Technology
Bosch Packaging Technology showcases its Direct Drive Delta robot DD23. This new development enables a 50% speed increase of Delta robots. The DD23 robot is the first Delta robot to have directly servo-driven arms. They are mounted directly on the motor, which eliminates the need to have gearboxes or a rack and pinion construction. This reduces maintenance, which leads to less downtime and an increase in the overall equipment efficiency.
The DD23 robot can utilize the complete portfolio of end-effectors, ranging from mono- and multi-pick to reflex pick end-effectors. Vacuum, mechanical and Coanda end-effectors, with or without rotations, ensure gentle and reliable product handling. The lightweight material and design enable high performance packaging applications.
At the Bosch stand the DD23 is incorporated with the new Paloma D21R. This entry-level automation solution with a compact frame has been especially designed to fit a single robot. The robot picks a single product or a group of products, either food or non-food items, and top loads them into various types of cartons and trays. The robot can also directly feed the products into the infeed of the packaging machine, such as horizontal wrappers or side load cartoners.
WoodPlasticCompound Stacking frame
Klaus Kunststofftechnik GmbH in Memmingen/Germany introduces the first frame made from a composite: 70% wood and 30% plastic.
Although, this stacking frame has only technical applications, it is aesthetic as well. The application is materials- and resource friendly and, therefore, sustainable.
Its folding capability makes this product interesting, not only from a materials point of view, but also because it has created a new form for transport boxes.
It looks as though the frame parts are made out of MDF, but thanks to their spray-moulding production process they have significant advantages and a much higher stiffness ratio.
According to the manufacturer the frame has a range of advantages, being free part design, heavy duty quality, due to the precision fitting dangerous shaking is avoided, easy to clean, and last but not least usable in autoclaves and aseptic processes.
It is said to be a solution for all branches also for food industry and medicine logistics. The material is 100% recyclable. The innovation won an iF material Award at the Interpack.
Recently Superfos has invented a new co-injection method. The essence of the method is the combination of two different materials for one single packaging, one of them being post consumer material, which makes it possible to use both virgin PP and up to 40% recycled material PP in the same packaging design. The new process injects recycled material between two layers of virgin material.
Only the raw material virgin PP is visible or in contact with the packaged content. Actually, between 30 and 40% of the packaging may not be virgin PP. Applying the method means a significant reduction in the carbon footprint of the packaging and is a brilliant way to apply recycled material.
By using the co-injection process, Superfos is able to recycle a lot more which is one of the goals of the company’s carbon strategy. The invention was nominated as a Coup de Coeur at Emballage 2010 as one of the best innovations of the year in the industry. It also won an iF Packaging Award at the Interpack.
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