The 7th Intl. Converting Exhibition (ICE Europe 2011) closed last Thursday at the New Munich (Germany) Trade Fair Centre after breaking all records for visitors, exhibitors and display floor space. Based on survey results, the top interests of attendees were coating, laminating, slitting/rewinding, components/accessories, test/measurement systems and materials—in that order. Production/engineering, R&D and corporate management were the top three job classifications of visitors.
Here are a few new-product developments from the show.
Atlas Converting Equipment Ltd. (UK) launched its next-generation Titan SR9 Series with the SR9-DT Dual Turret slitter/rewinder. New features include lower power consumption and enhancements in sustainability for a reduced carbon footprint. The unit’s Linear Tracking Slitter (LTS) section ensures the shortest and a constant web length between the knives and the rewind shafts for improved web control. The Titan SR9-DT is reportedly the fastest (1,000 mpm), shafted secondary slitter/rewinder in the world for converters of flexible packaging. Live demos at ICE Europe showed processing of a 1,210-mm-wide parent roll of 30-micron, 8-color flexographically-printed Natural OPP film.
Bimec S.r.l.’s STM/83 dual-spindle slitter/rewinder is suitable for plastic films, paper and laminates with high output, durability and innovative design. It was shown along with info on the supplier’s line of rewinders, reversible salvage rewinders, center-folding machines, shafted and shaftless unwind stands, and core cutters.
Ashe Converting Equipment displayed its Sapphire S2 slitter/rewinder, which incorporates dovetail-mounted slitting assemblies with fast setup and changeover of slit patterns for razor, shear and crush-cut slitting. Engineered for a range of films, laminates, flexible packaging and papers, the unit runs at speeds up to 700 mpm (2,300 fpm). New software eliminates many of the buttons on the machine and gives operators full control via an integrated-PC touchscreen.
The new RB4 Series slitter/rewinder from Laem System is said to reduce downtime and operator physical exertion while increasing productivity and versatility. With a maximum speed of 600 mpm (2,000 fpm), the unit runs materials from 10-450 microns thick, features a shaftless unwind and aspirated splicing table.
“Think economically and slit ecologically” was the theme of Soma Engineering’s Pluto eco slitter/rewinder, an entry-level machine for standard work. Aimed at converters processing high volumes of material, the unit was developed to cut investment and running cost while preserving the environment by eliminating hydraulics, reducing energy consumption and permitting a clean, oil-free operation.
The Goebel Optima-Z rewind station for cigarette, tipping and filter papers has a working width of 1,650 mm (65 in.) and runs at 1,200 mpm (3,900) fpm. The equipment handles parent rolls with unwind diameters up to 1,500 mm (59 in.) and rewind diameters to 620 mm (24.5 in.).
Kampf’s MicroslitCON slitter/rewinder system is engineered to process extremely narrow cuts with tight tolerances at speeds of 500 mpm (1,650 fpm). It runs metallized PET, BOPP and BOPET films from 1.5-12 microns thick. The unit on exhibit at ICE Europe was sold to process high-tech battery-separator films.
Preco’s new 330-mm-wide (13 in.) rotary converting platform (RCP) uses multilayered construction to die-cut, laminate, strip away (remove matrix), slit, sheet, perforate, fold, island-place and perform most other traditional converting tasks—all in-line on one machine. The RCP also can incorporate value-added treatments such as various types of printing, ink curing, hot-melt gluing, reciprocal flatbed cutting, corona treatment and other operations. A highlight of the unit on display was the FlashLite™ glavo laser on the RCP process-station manifold.
The new StarPack Line from ROFIN-BAASEL Lasertech offers solutions from every kind of laser application in the packaging field for cross-web / free-form scribing / web-direction scribing / perforation or both. The units fit a variety of web-processing needs for easy-opening tear spots or controlled-atmosphere packaging perforation. A new 3-axis scanner features a working area up to 1,250 x 1,250 sq mm (50 x 50 in.).
SOMATEC clean-room winders meet the requirements of medical materials and the food industry. They are either painted with clean-room approved lacquer or are completely nickel-plated. Operator-panel doors or terminal boxes are made from stainless steel. Closed side frames use polycarbonate windows. Idler rolls are hard-coated aluminum or chromium-plated. The winders comply with ISO 1464 and US FDA standards.
Components and add-ons
The new Maxcess Fife-500 web-guiding system for narrow-web and nonwoven applications features an easy-to-use color touchscreen with icons and text in multiple languages to simplify operation and reduce training time. It leverages the latest technology to improve performance and brushless motors to reduce maintenance. Faster core-processing speeds let it adapt quickly to changes in the web—even at high line speeds of 500 mpm (1,650 fpm).
The BASIX R47 compact discharge electrode and ES47 power-supply unit from Eltex-Elektrostatik GmbH provide new static-control performance for web processors. The UL-certifed R47 discharging bar is protected against contact and easy to clean; the ES47 has a robust steel housing, two high-voltage connectors and bars are connected via clamp terminals.
Holy Cow! Whey-protein coated films with high-barrier properties for food-packaging apps were shown by the Fraunhofer Institute IVV. Coating polymer films with the by-product of cheese manufacturing yields a material with barrier almost comparable to the EVOH layer conventionally used. It also reportedly has excellent adhesion to the substrate and sufficient flexibility to meet functional and mechanical requirements.
Exopack Advanced Coatings’ inspire™ medical components feature high MVTR, low trauma and breathability. Standard films, foams, laminates and breathable adhesives are offered. Conductive films for use in clinical apps such as ECG, TENS, biosensors and EMI/RFI radiation shielding for medical equipment are also available.
Ceramis® high-barrier films, coated with SiOx onto PET, OPA, OPP and PLA, are produced by Amcor Flexibles Europe & Americas on high vacuum-coating machinery. The highly transparent materials combine barrier against gases, water vapor and aromas and are not affected by temperature and humidity. PET-SiOX films with gauges down to only 8 microns are available, allowing a material source reduction of up to 30% for improved sustainability.