A S l A â€™ S L E A D l N G m aga z l ne f o r t h e p las t l c s and r u b b e r l nd u s t r y
In this issue
Volume 34, No 245
publlshed slnce 1985
A S l A’ S L E A D l N G m aga z l ne f o r the plastlcs and rubber lndustry
Features 焦 點 內 容 13 再循環: 循環經濟不可或缺的一環 16 Front Cover Feature – Global machinery firm Davis-Standard shares
information about its recent acquisitions, Suzhou facility expansion, DS ActivCheck system for continuous extruder monitoring, dsX flex-pack™ technology and stretch film capabilities
20 Country Focus – The 33rd edition of Asian exhibition show, Chinaplas 2019, will be held from 21-24 May in Guangzhou
24 Extrusion Machinery – A selection of extrusion machinery concepts
Publisher/Editor-in-Chief Arthur Schavemaker Tel: +31 547 275005 Email: email@example.com Associate Publisher/Executive Editor Tej Fernandez Tel: +60 3 4260 4575 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
for the Asian market. Highlighted are SML, Hosokawa Alpine, Windmöller & Hölscher, Brückner, Reifenhäuser and Amut 26 Additives – FRX and Yoo-Point to produce emulsions for PU foam in China; BASF works with Tân Hùng Co' Masterbatch to produce durable greenhouse films in Vietnam
Senior Editor Angelica Buan Email: email@example.com
28 Advertorial – Emery Oleochemicals 30 Recycling – The circular economy is one of a leading current issues, with
Circulation Stephanie Yuen Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
the industry having achieved much in recent years, as demonstrated in several examples
34 Engineering Plastics – Developments in the automotive industry
Chinese Editor Koh Bee Ling
Permits ISSN 1360-1245
are being made possible with new engineering plastics materials that meet durability, light weight and cost efficiency
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36 Country Focus – Thailand has progressed in the global/Asian industry
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sector; with its automotive, packaging and electronics/electrical sectors leading the way
Supplements 副 刊 At Chinaplas, machinery makers will be showing the latest in automated machinery for medical and packaging applications; as well as digital processing South Korea is maturing into a technology-driven industry, as witnessed at the Koplas 2019 show, held 12-16 March in Seoul Malaysian glove makers are rising up to meet the challenges of tight competition in the global market DIGITAL+PRINT www.plasticsandrubberasia.com
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On the Cover Davis-Standard will be promoting its latest dsX flex-pack™ 300S at Chinaplas. It will be available for demonstration at its Suzhou facility later this year
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M&As/Investments • German materials manufacturer Covestro and biotechnology company Genomatica have joined forces to research and develop highperformance materials based on renewable feedstocks. • In what is said to be one of the largest deals in the chemical industry, the world’s largest oil/petrochemical firm Saudi Aramco has acquired a 70% stake in Sabic for US$69.1 billion, from its owner the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia. The remaining 30% publicly traded shares in Sabic are not part of the transaction, and Aramco has no plans to acquire these remaining shares. In 2018, Sabic’s consolidated production volume across its various business units was 75 million tonnes, and it recorded a net income of US$$5.7 billion, annual sales of US$45 billion, and total assets of US$$85 billion. • Thailandheadquartered chemicals maker Indorama Ventures Public
Company Limited (IVL) has completed the purchase of 83 million newly issued shares in Indo Rama Synthetics (India) (IRSL), equaling to approximately 31.79% equity at US$43 million. IRSL is a fibre manufacturing facility located in Nagpur, with a combined capacity of 605,000 tonnes/ year, consisting of polyester chips, fibres and filament yarns. • South Korea’s LG Chem has acquired key technologies (R&D facilities and materials/ equipment) used for producing soluble organic light emitting diodes (OLED) from US chemical firm DuPont for US$175 million. • UBE Corporation Europe (UCE), has acquired Spanish compounder Repol that operates a compounding business in Europe using nylon 6, nylon 66, polypropylene, polyacetal, and other resin raw materials. • Hungary’s MOL Group has entered into recycled plastic compounding by acquiring family-run Aurora
Group, which has production plants located in BadenWürttemberg, Germany. In the beginning of 2019, Aurora opened a compounding facility in Neuenstein, doubling production capacity to 15,000 tonnes/year. • US polymer company Aurora Plastics has acquired compounder Elastocon TPE Technologies, headquartered in Illinois. The acquisition will add on injection moulding TPE compounding capabilities to Aurora Plastics’ product portfolio of PVC compounds, PVC alloys, CPE alloys, low-smoke flame-retardant concentrates, purge compounds and TPE compounds for extrusion. Terms were not disclosed. This is the fourth acquisition for Aurora Plastics in two years. • Swiss composites materials maker Gurit has acquired the PET recycling production facility of Valplastic in Italy for an undisclosed purchase price. Closing of the transaction is expected at the end of May 2019. Gurit is continuing to
invest significantly into recycled PET core material production assets globally for the wind and non-wind industry to cope with the material demand. • DowDuPont Inc. has completed the separation of its Materials Science Division through the spin-off of Dow Inc. With this move, the US chemical firm has also advanced towards the formation of three independent public companies. DowDuPont remains on track to complete the previously announced separation of its Agriculture Division (Corteva Agriscience) on 1 June 2019. • German chemicals firm BASF has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with automotive parts manufacturer Chongqing Boao Industrial to collaborate on the development of polyurethane (PU) system products in China. Under the terms of the cooperation, BASF will provide materials and technical knowledge, while Boao will focus on applications and product development.
Plant Expansions/Openings/ Set-ups • US firm Lubrizol Engineered Polymers has added another new TPU line in its Songjiang (Shanghai) China plant; last year it added on a new compounding line. Both expansions are aimed at supporting the company's Engineered Polymers business. The new line in China will increase capacity for specialty applications by nearly a third. • Switzerland-based caps/closures maker Corvaglia Group has completed its first manufacturing facility in the US, in Georgia. The new facility will complement Corvaglia’s existing operations in Switzerland and Mexico. • Japan’s Toyo Ink SC Holdings, the parent company of Toyo Ink Group, has opened a new sales subsidiary in Casablanca, Morocco, in preparation for a full-scale business launch into the African continent, with paid-up capital of EUR2.4 million. • Austrian machinery firm Engel’s Mexican branch has opened a second location in Mexico,
in San Pedro near Monterrey. It is headquartered in Querétaro near Mexico City in the centre of the country, where numerous companies in the plastics industry are also based. • French chemical firm Arkema has started up a Kepstan PEKK plant at its site near Mobile, US. This investment, which complements the doubling of Kepstan PEKK resin capacities in France in 2017, supports the strong demand for carbon fibre-reinforced composites and 3D printing. Arkema has also started up the 30% capacity extension at its Sartomer photocure advanced liquid resin production plant in Nansha, China, to meet the strong demand in Asia in the electronics, 3D printing, adhesives and inkjet printing markets. • Nouryon (formerly AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals) will double production capacity for solvent-based organic peroxides at its Los Reyes, Mexico site,
enabling it to support the strong growth of the North American polyolefin and PVC markets, by 2020. • Dutch technology firm Avantium is locating its new demonstration plant for its Mekong technology in Chemie Park Delfzijl, Netherlands. The plant, with a capacity of around 10 tonnes of plant-based monoethylene glycol (MEG), is scheduled to be opened in the second half of 2019. • Germany’s Evonik is doubling the production of Trogamid CX transparent polyamides at the Marl Chemical Park (Germany) by 2020. It will do this in part through targeted debottlenecking efforts, in part through initiatives undertaken by production management. • Chemical maker Borealis and its subsidiary Borouge have opened a new compounding plant in North Carolina, US. With dedicated production lines for TPO and short glass fibre-reinforced compounds, the plant adds on another 30
kilotonnes to Borealis and Borouge’s global PP compounding capacity. • BASF will increase the production capacity of Alkylethanolamines (AEOA) by 20% at its site in Germany, by 2020, bringing its nameplate capacity to 110,000 tonnes/ year at its facilities in Germany, US and China. AEOAs are mainly used as precursors for flocculants; binders between pigments and resins as well as in lubricants in metal working fluids and PUs. BASF is also proceeding with the second phase of its expansion for methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (MDI) at its Geismar chemical complex in the US. The EUR69 million expansion will double production of MDI from 300 kilotonnes/ year to about 600 kilotonnes/year in the multiphase project. It has also pumped in an earlier investment of EUR133 million for the first phase of the project. • US-based additives supplier Milliken will open a clarifier plant in South Carolina. US, by 2020 to boost capacity of its
INDUSTRY NEWS Milliken’s Millad NX 8000 clarifier by 50%. It says that demand for Millad NX 8000 is growing in every geographical region and across many end-use markets, with the strongest growth in Asia. • Swedish Trelleborg Group has opened a new 6,200 sq-m facility for rail antivibration systems in Bengaluru, India. • Styrenics maker Ineos Styrolution is planning to set up a new production site for its composite StyLight by 2022. While Ineos says it is prioritising a location in Germany, a specific location for the new production site is yet to be defined. The company’s recent activities include the acquisition of PS assets in China, construction of a new 100,000 tonnes ASA plant in Texas and the development of a new 50,000 tonnes ABS production line in France. • PetroChina will use LyondellBasell’s Hostalen Advanced Cascade Process technology for three HDPE plants: a 300 kilotonne/year HDPE unit to be built in Xinjiang Province, a 400 kilotonne/year
plant in Guangdong Province, and a 400 kilotonne/ year plant in Shaanxi Province. Licensor selection has been done by China HuanQiu Contracting & Engineering Co, a wholly owned subsidiary of PetroChina. • Producer of films for the shrink-film market Switzerlandheadquartered Bilcare is investing EUR10 million in new PETG capacity to serve its growing shrink film and medical device customer base. With this investment, apart from PETG shrink-films, Bilcare will also be manufacturing PETG films for the medical device market. • UK-based Plastic Energy is working with the province of West Java (Indonesia) to build five chemical recycling plants, in line with the Indonesian government’s commitment to reduce marine plastic debris by 70% by 2025. Plastic Energy has pioneered the conversion of plastic waste into oils, known as Tacoil, for making new plastics. The UK firm has two industrial plants
in Spain and has also tied up with chemical firm Sabic to provide feedstock for the production of certified circular polymers, following the establishment of a commercial plant in the Netherlands. • Finnish flexible packaging maker Huhtamaki has launched its new packaging unit in Egypt, marking the company's entry into manufacturing flexible packaging in Africa. It is owned and operated as a joint venture of which Huhtamaki owns 75%, with 25% is owned by Ayman Korra, who has been Huhtamaki's joint venture partner since 2003. The current investment, including land purchase, facility construction and machinery, is EUR23 million with Huhtamaki’s share of EUR17 million. • German chemical firm Wacker is launching its first Aceo open print lab in the US. Aceo is said to be the world’s first industrialscale technology for the additive manufacturing of liquid silicone rubber (LSR) components. • After receiving more than 20,000
tweets and retweets from people sharing their support for reducing ocean plastic, US-based household products firm SC Johnson will build an additional recycling centre in Indonesia, its ninth in the country. • Automotive components manufacturer Hella has opened its second electronics plant in India, in response to the growing market in the country. The 5,000 sq m-production facility in Mehsana, north of the city of Ahmedabad in Gujarat, will initially focus on sensor solutions for accelerator pedal sensors and will gradually be expanded by further electronic products. • US technology firm Lord Corporation plans to expand operations at its Hückelhoven, Germany facility, with an investment of EUR14 million. This project will position it to provide optimal support to the fastgrowing electric vehicle (EV) market, especially in Germany and all over Europe, says the firm. MAY 2019
Meeting of the minds for bioplastics Industry think tanks led by researchers and scientists are advancing bioplastics and weighing in on their pros and cons, says Angelica Buan in this report.
he creation of early bioplastics from cellulose, milk and bacteria has paved the way to providing solutions to today’s more complex global issues, such as climate change and marine litter due to rising volumes of non-degradable plastic waste. Researchers and scientists are instrumental to advancing bioplastics technology. There is, after all, an avalanche of resources that can be harnessed to create bioplastics. But there is a caveat, according to some experts: the raw material used as feedstock may outweigh the benefits of producing and utilising bioplastics at an industrial scale. The solution anchors to staying within the circular economy schema to cultivate sustainability; and by using waste as bioplastic raw material is one way to achieving this. Green claims through the lens Recently, bioplastics’ carbon neutral claim has been scrutinised, thus somewhat undermining its sustainability worthiness. A recent study from the University of Bonn suggests that shifting to plant-based plastics may not be as environmentally sustainable after all, for the reason that the more bioplastics are consumed, the greater greenhouse gas emissions are generated from cropland expansion. Notwithstanding the amount of water needed to cultivate crops utilised for the feedstock. Dr Neus Escobar, from the University of Bonn’s Institute of Food and Resource Economics, said that large scale production of bioplastics would change land use globally, and thus could potentially lead to an increase in the conversion of forest areas to arable land. He said that ramping up demand for so called green energy sources is a cause of massive deforestation in some countries across the tropics. Escobar also suggested that consuming bioplastics from food crops in greater amounts does not seem to be an effective strategy to protect the climate, as this would trigger many other negative effects, such as rising food costs. Nevertheless, he stressed that using crop residues and food wastes for producing bioplastics rather than crop feedstock would have a more favourable result. He also debunked the narrative that plant-based plastics are easily degradable in marine environments and thus will contribute in reducing the amount of wastes in the oceans. “Bio-PE and Bio-PET are for example not biodegradable, same as their petroleum-based counterparts,” he pointed out.
The study, published in the Environmental Research Letters journal, does not negate, however, the fact that bioplastics are, “in principle, climate-neutral, because they are based on renewable raw materials such as maize, wheat or sugar cane”. It said that these plants get the carbon dioxide that they need from the air through their leaves. Thus, producing bioplastics consumes carbon dioxide, which compensates for the amount that is later released at end-of-life. Overall, their net greenhouse gas balance is assumed to be zero. Tuning up bioplastics for broader applications The bioplastics market has huge potential. Allied Market Research estimated the market to cross US$68.5 billion by 2024, the period that is targeted by a number of companies such as shoe maker Adidas; and economies like the European Union (EU) to increase use of recycled plastics, while cutting down use of fossil-based plastics. But currently, the bioplastics market is impeded by higher cost of production and lower performance compared to synthetic plastics. Likewise, bioplastics have limited applications due to their low biostability.
Adidas has made a shoe from a version of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU), which is 100% recyclable and also zero waste. It does this by taking the first generation shoe back, recycling that and using the recycled material to create components for a subsequent shoe
UNL and Jiangnan University scientists have applied a thermal method in the production of bioplastics to improve their properties
Tackling the limitations of bioplastic, researchers from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) and China-based Jiangnan University focused on improving the properties of bioplastics by devising a thermal method in the production. The approach made use of PLA. By mixing pellets of the L and D polylactide and spinning them into fibres, the team rapidly heated them to 400°F. The procedure resulted in a bioplastic that resisted melting at temperatures more than 100°F, higher than did plastics containing only the L or D molecules. It also maintained its structural integrity and tensile strength after being submersed in water at more than 250°F, approximating the conditions that bioplastics must endure when being incorporated into dyed textiles. The team reported that this thermal approach omitted the use of solvents and other expensive, time-consuming techniques typically needed to manufacture a commercially viable bioplastic. They also said this approach could allow manufacturers of corn-based bioplastic to continuously produce the
Reﬁning complexity into productivity. SML’s high-speed extrusion coating and laminating lines are tailored to the hugely diverse requirements of coating products and set the standard in maintaining ﬂexibility for frequent product changes.
Extrusion lines. Engineered to perform.
biodegradable material on a scale that at least approaches petroleum-based plastic. The researchers projected that this new technology makes possible an industrialscale production of commercialisable bioplastics; with the viability of the process to be integrated into existing industrial processes. Improving toughness and strength properties of bioplastic is the focus of a latest research by Ohio State University (OSU) College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) published in the journal Polymers. The research has shown that combining natural rubber with bioplastic derived from microbial fermentation yielded a stronger material that is comparable to conventional plastic.
OSU researchers, combining rubber with bioplastic derived from microbial fermentation, have come up with a stronger material that is comparable to conventional plastic
The process involved melting rubber into polyhydroxybutyrate-co-hydroxyvalerate or PHBV, a biodegradable, non-toxic thermoplastic; and along with organic peroxide and an additive, trimethylolpropane triacrylate (TMPTA). The resulting product was 75% tougher and 100% more flexible than PHBV only, and therefore more mouldable when used in food packaging applications.
Be sure not to miss SML at the CHINAPLAS 2019 Stand No. 9.2A61
Lead study author, Xiaoying Zhao, said that previous attempts at this combination were unsuccessful because the softness of rubber meant the product lost a lot of strength in the process. Accordingly, increased flexibility, without a significant loss of strength, is particularly important when it comes to plastic films commonly used to package everything from fresh produce to frozen foods. Zhao added that preceding trials at making this type of rubber-enhanced bioplastic have reduced the strength of the PHBV by as much as 80%, whereas in their study, only 30% of the strength was lost, which is a relatively manageable amount. Co-author, Katrina Cornish, explained that the improved toughness is different from strength. The natural rubber expert implied that toughness of a material could be tested by applying a strong enough force to find out how easily it breaks. The team are now looking into biodegradable food scraps and organic wastes, which can be used as fillers to further strengthen the mix. Among the considered materials are oils extracted from coffee grounds, tomato skins, eggshells, and even grass. They are also exploiting other applications such as utensils, building materials, car parts, gloves, and possibly more. Mimicking real plastic using wood Perhaps the greatest challenge in developing bioplastics is to make the material as close to conventional plastics in terms of durability, production cost, and application versatility, to cite a few favourable properties. Utilising agricultural wastes as raw material is deemed to help bring down cost of bioplastics production. Japanheadquartered Green Science Alliance (GSA) has developed 100% nature-derived material-based biodegradable plastic from waste wood, bamboo, and others. The company, led by its CEO, Dr Ryohei Mori, aims for nonpetroleum raw materials to create a biodegradable plastic. According to Mori, bamboo, an abundant crop in Japan and the Asian region, has not been well utilised. The GSA wood-based technology will not only raise the utilisation efficiency Green Science Alliance has developed of bamboo but of 100% nature-derived material-based other plant materials biodegradable plastic from waste wood, bamboo, and others as well.
For this venture, GSA is said to produce a small batch of samples that possess mechanical strength, heat durability and dimensional stability. In addition, it also plans to produce cutlery out of this wood-based material under the companyâ€™s Nano Sakura brand. GSA also has a nano-cellulose composite technology, and recently it has developed a starch-based biodegradable plastic and recycled paper-based biodegradable plastic. Raw material on a string with seaweeds Seaweeds are utilised in a range of industries, from food and agriculture to pharmaceutical and cosmetics. Seaweed farming, in itself, is a booming industry, producing over 25 million tonnes/year. Harnessing the potential of seaweeds as a cheap bioplastic resource, Tel Aviv's University Porter School of Environmental and Earth Sciences scientists have experimented with seaweeds to produce biodegradable polymers. The process requires that seaweeds are fed with the single-cell microorganisms to produce a marinebased bioplastic.
Seaweeds are a cheap resource for producing marine bioplastics, according to Tel Aviv researchers
Study co-authors, Dr Alexander Golberg and Michael Gozin, a Professor in Tel Aviv's University of Chemistry, said that the end product, which can be used in the production of items that usually require oil-based polyesters, cost only US$1/kg. This, thus, makes the prospect of producing cheaper bioplastics becoming a reality soon. The team is currently exploring other suitable bacteria and algae varieties to create different kinds of bioplastics. From laboratory to market: companies give the leg-up Thanks to ongoing R&D efforts, companies are being assisted to make a concrete shift to eco-sustainability. On the one hand this achieves in pushing bioplastic innovations out from the laboratory onto the market. Canada-based fresh produce company, The Star Group, has forayed into bioplastics packaging, utilising its fruit wastes consisting mostly of pineapple peels and
Fruit wastes, such as pineapple peels, are being utilised to develop cellulose-based materials
melon rinds from its fresh-cut operations. The company is developing its cellulose-based material concept with scientists and researchers. David Karwacki, CEO of Star Group, said that bioplastics need to be high performing and cost effective â€“ potentials that can be delivered by utilising the fruit wastes they generate. Along the same lines, German materials manufacturer Covestro and US biotechnology company Genomatica have forged a long-term partnership to develop highperformance materials based on renewable feedstock. The cohorts are working together to drive commercially-focused innovations: Genomatica will
be flexing its industrial-scale bioprocesses expertise to produce widely-used chemicals, while Covestro will commit its chemical process technology and application development into the partnership. Genomatica was instrumental in a 12-company consortium project that started in mid-2018 to develop biobased chemical technology, as part of the EU H2020 programme to stimulate investments towards the development of a sustainable and circular biobased economy. The EFFECTIVE project, which received a EUR1.7 million grant from the Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU), a public/private partnership between the EU and the Bio-based Industries Consortium (BIC), focuses on making biobased polyamides and polyesters from non-oil and gas renewable feedstocks for use in multiple markets, such as construction, automotive, packaging, garments, carpets and textile. In bringing their concepts to fruition, what Genomatica, Covestro, Star Group, and other likeminded industry players share in common is that they aim to reduce the use of fossil-based resources and help reduce the carbon footprints. They are able to achieve these by honing in the value of waste materials, which is at the heart of the circular economy advocacy, and the blood of the continuous R&D being undertaken on bioplastics.
Front Cover Feature
Encompassing market leadership Headquartered in Pawcatuck, Conn., Davis-Standard is a global leader in the design, development and distribution of extrusion and converting technology. DavisStandard will promote the company’s equipment innovation and regional growth at Hall 9.2, Booth J41, during Chinaplas 2019 in Guangzhou, 21-24 May, alongside its subsidiaries Maillefer and Brampton Engineering. Davis-Standard will share information about its recent acquisitions, Suzhou facility expansion, DS Activ-Check system for continuous extruder monitoring, dsX flexpack™ technology and stretch film capabilities; as well as exhibit a HPE100H, 1” 24:1 extruder.
Asia, still a hive of activity for manufacturing The Asian region, led by economies successfully transitioning from middleincome to advance-economy standing, continues to propel the global economy as it represents more than 60% of world growth, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) assessment. Despite the pervading tensed global financial and geopolitical conditions, the region wins over the obstacles of downside risks by tapping on its ample domestic markets, and reforming policies to further strengthen industries as well as the industrial capital. The region is likewise on par with more mature economies in the west through increasing use of At Chinaplas, Davis-Standard digitalisation and will promote its DS Activ-Check assimilating smart system for continuous extruder monitoring manufacturing into operations. Even though IMF forecasts growth for Asia to fall slightly from 5.6% in 2018 to 5.4% in 2019, key industries, including the automotive, building and construction, electrical & electronics, medical devices, packaging and food and beverage, are sustaining the growth of the region. The automotive industry is one such major industry that continues to shore up the region’s manufacturing industry. Demand for commercial vehicles continues to surge. Likewise, growth in construction activities in major markets is driving the demand for heavy trucks, buses and other commercial vehicles. Likewise, the medical devices market is also flexing its might, poised to register a CAGR growth of 6.5% to US$167.2 billion from 2017-2026, according to Inkwood Research, while the Asian flexible packaging market is poised to reach a CAGR of 5.7% to US$6.7 billion from 2016-2024, according to a Transparency Market Research sector forecast, driven by growth and increasing disposable incomes.
Front Cover Feature The slowdown of China’s economy, and the challenges its manufacturing industry now faces against rising global protectionism, has diverted production to other manufacturing capable countries in the region. Nonetheless, China remains a market ally for the region. The East Asian factory powerhouse continues to upscale its technological standards amid ever tightening competition in the global market. With its Made in China 2025 industry blueprint in place, the country drills on catching up with global peers in manufacturing technologies in the fields of automotive, aerospace, electronics, robotics, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and more. Furthermore, China is among the global forerunners in machinery exports, as well as the world’s largest producer, consumer, and importer of machine tools. According to data from the China Machinery Industry Federation, the country’s machinery exports grew 8.4% to US$406 billion in 2017, and continues to grow to current periods, due to structural reforms that have been effected, marked by tax incentives, and upgrades to hightech manufacturing with the integration of industrial robotics and AI. Davis-Standard to highlight a bevy of products It is against the above backdrop that Davis-Standard will display its products/services at Chinaplas 2019. The US company’s systems encompass over ten product lines to support manufacturing applications and customers within every major industry. This includes the agriculture, automotive, construction, healthcare, energy, electronics, food and beverage packaging, and retail industries, among others. With more than 1,350 employees worldwide and a network of independent sales agents and suppliers in nearly every country, Davis-Standard is committed to engineering systems. The company has manufacturing
Sekaran Murugaiah, Vice-President Business Development, Asia
and technical facilities in the US, Canada, China, Germany, Finland, Switzerland and the UK. We find out more about the company through this interview with Sekaran Murugaiah, Vice-President Business Development Asia Pacific. PRA: What technology/services will Davis-Standard be displaying at Chinaplas 2019? We will promote our DS Activ-Check system for continuous extruder monitoring, dsX flex-pack™ technology and stretch film capabilities, and exhibit a HPE100 extruder. The DS Activ-Check addresses demand for “smart” technology. Using DS Activ-Check, processors can take advantage of real-time preventative maintenance by providing early notifications of potential extruder failures. Machine operators are alerted to issues before they happen, preventing unnecessary downtime while also collecting valuable data. Key parameters monitored include extruder reducer, lubrication system, motor characteristics, the drive power unit, barrel heating and cooling.
Davis-Standard offers the Vector ® air rings on its extrusion lines
The latest dsX flex-pack™ model being promoted is the 300S. This single station extrusion and laminating line is designed specifically for the Asian flexible packaging market
The latest dsX flex-pack™ model being promoted is the 300S. This single station extrusion and laminating line is designed specifically for the Asian flexible packaging market. It is a collaboration among DavisStandard’s teams in the US, Germany and China, addressing the pricing, machine footprint, speeds and output, and shorter runs demanded by converters. Davis-Standard is also engineering a tandem configuration of this machine called the dsX flex-pack™ 300T. MAY 2019
Front Cover Feature The dsX flex-pack™ 300S will be available for demonstration in Suzhou later this year. For stretch film applications, Davis-Standard offers a stretch film line equipped with a DS S3 winder. The line offers a compact machine arrangement, ease of servicing, excellent profile control, consistent roll quality and an intuitive control package. It is engineered for producing thin films from 7.8 to 13 microns at high speeds. The side-by-side DS S3 overlapping winder is essential For stretch film applications, Davisto this capability, Standard offers a stretch film line enabling maximum equipped with a DS S3 winder slit widths for hand-wrap, machine-wrap and jumbo rolls. This winder also makes it possible for converters to support multiple market segments on one winder. The model HPE 100 extruder being shown is an example of Davis-Standard’s performance engineering for versatility, long-term market value and an attractive return on investment. This extruder is designed for co-extrusion and multi-layer applications, and is available with a variety of DSB® feedscrew designs depending on applications.
PRA: Are there new capabilities to be offered by DavisStandard in Asia/China? In addition to what is mentioned above, Davis-Standard recently acquired Thermoforming Systems, LLC (TSL), of Union Gap, Washington. With this addition, we are now able to offer in-line thermoforming technology for sheet and high-volume packaging applications. PRA: Is Davis-Standard planning to expand its Suzhou facility with new capabilities? Yes, Davis-Standard’s Suzhou location is expanding this year. The additional 3,251 sq-m facility near the existing shop in Suzhou will house control panel assembly and provide much-needed warehousing.
Davis-Standard expects to offer control panel assembly at its facility in Suzhou later this year
The addition reflects Davis-Standard’s strong extrusion coating business and long-term strategy in the region. Suzhou is also home to an R&D laboratory that supports Asia’s medical market. This capability has been an asset to customers, and an excellent tool for supporting development of new resins and biodegradable products.
Davis-Standard also offers a variety of feedscrew designs depending on applications
Advantages include a small footprint, high-torque capacity to handle a variety of resins and a direct coupled motor. Models are available in 20-45 mm with L/D’s in 24:1 or 30:1. For added support, the extruder comes with a three-year warranty.
The Suzhou facility expansion this year is a reflection of Davis-Standard’s strong extrusion coating business and long-term strategy in the region
Front Cover Feature PRA: How have the Chinese/Asian markets fared for Davis-Standard? There have been challenges with economic and trade uncertainties in China. However, we remain optimistic about the Chinese market and our business prospects there. Meanwhile, plastic demand has continued in Asia, albeit at a slower rate. This has primarily been driven by global economic uncertainties, the slowdown in major economies like China, and uncertainties in the financial markets. However, there are continuous and exciting growth prospects in the food packaging segment for sustainable solutions, innovative products and functionalities. There will be challenges for single-use plastics in many countries, and the industry will need to effectively respond to this demand. PRA: What aspects of Industry 4.0, offered by DavisStandard, benefit businesses in China/Asia? Industry 4.0 initiatives benefit everyone. Davis-Standard already offers excellent connectivity via our DS-eVUE and EPIC III® control systems. Connectivity is essential to making Industry 4.0 and the “smart factory” work. These controls are also compatible with our new DS Activ-Check system (mentioned above), which applies predictive maintenance analytics. We place additional sensors on extruder components such as the gearbox and motor to monitor factors such as temperature, pressure and vibration. With Industry 4.0, we will be able to offer a complete solution that further digitises data collection and gives customers greater insight into improving and controlling processes. It is all about the ability to collect data that will help reduce waste, increase uptime and improve productivity.
PRA: After Davis-Standard added on Gloucester Engineering and Maillefer to its portfolio, last year it added on TSL and Brampton Engineering. What new opportunities do these new acquisitions provide DavisStandard? Each acquisition has been instrumental in being able to offer customers the best machinery in the industry. The acquisition of Brampton in 2018 augmented our multilayer film processing and winding TSL offers thermoforming technology equipment for high volume output for blown film applications. TSL (Thermoforming Systems LLC), also added in 2018, is the market leader in thermoforming equipment for high-volume packaging applications. TSL fits nicely with Davis-Standard’s continued growth in the packaging sector. Maillefer, acquired in 2017, expanded the company’s wire and cable, pipe and tube equipment offering, and added facilities in Finland and Switzerland to better serve customers, including those in China. The addition of Gloucester Engineering expanded our blown film capabilities and gave us one of the largest installed bases of equipment in the world. These brands have made us stronger in terms of both equipment capabilities and aftermarket services. PRA: Are there any updates or developments in downstream equipment?
PRA: Last year, Davis-Standard unveiled its new branding. Please provide a brief description of this new approach.
We have ongoing efforts to further improve our winder and web handling system production and energy efficiencies.
Our goal is to be the market leader in providing solutions that help customers better compete in today’s marketplace. We now have a brand that better speaks to that leadership. Our new tag line – Where Your Ideas Take Shape – reflects this. We have been on an upward trajectory on a global scale, and now is the time for our brand to embody what we have become; and still intend to become. Our aim is to work with customers in partnership to help them achieve a unique competitive advantage. We believe this can be achieved with technology that is tailored to customer needs as well as better ideas and holistic solutions. Our support services are central to this offering and our people are our most valuable asset. They are the heartbeat of the company; central to our approach and success.
PRA: Are there any upcoming plans for 2019 onward in terms of expansions, new technologies and facilities, R&D? The dsX flex-pack™ 300S will be available for demonstration in Suzhou later this year. We also continue with investments in R&D for extrusion and screw technology to support the development of new resins and biodegradable products, as well as energy efficiencies and reliability.
Visit Davis-Standard at Chinaplas 2019, Hall 9.2, Booth J41 For more on the company visit: www.davis-standard.com MAY 2019
China: on the road to recovery China's economy is on the road to recovery, having grown slightly more than expected in the first quarter of 2019, according to China's National Bureau of Statistics. It says the economy expanded by 6.4% in the first three months, compared to a year ago, due to government efforts to rein in the monumental debt in the financial system, allaying fears of a deeper slowdown due to the Sino-US trade war. It is against this backdrop that the Chinaplas 2019 show, organised by Adsale Exhibition Services, will be held in Guangzhou from 21-24 May.
ith growth of the world’s second largest economy having lost its momentum, the government is pulling out all the stops to stimulate the economy, like tax cuts for businesses, infrastructure spending and a more flexible monetary policy. Statistics in the first three months of the year point towards growth, supported by strong manufacturing production and more spending by Chinese consumers. Meanwhile, to establish the protection of human health, personal property and safety, products entering China, including chemical substances, intermediate materials and finished products, are required to comply with the GuoBiao (GB) standards. Catering to consumers’ needs, beyond the aesthetics, product quality encompasses safety to ensure the health of end users. In the topic of safety regulations are food contact materials, which are found in common items used on a daily basis, such as items that come into contact with food, like packaging materials and containers; or if put into the mouth, like toys and cutlery. China has enforced product safety laws and policies that are continually updated, to heed the public’s rising concerns on product safety. The food safety GB standards, particularly GB4806:2016, ensure sufficient regulatory compliance for food contact materials and articles in China.
Kraiburg says that specific TPE compounds come with the GB standards required in China
Thus, Germany’s Kraiburg TPE says that its specific TPE compounds come with the Declaration of Compliance (DoC) to meet the GB standards in China. Its materials adhere to the GB standards for food regulations, including the GB4806:2016, when sourcing for upstream material from suppliers, and during the processing stage. Catering to the packaging market Germany’s Kautex Maschinenbau, which had earlier this year pointed to global economic threats such the Brexit, the US trade policy and declining car production in China for its lower earnings, will be unveiling a newly developed six-layer extrusion head for packaging applications. The blow moulding machinery maker says its new six-layer head can be used to produce multi-layer hollow plastic containers with a volume of between 500 and 1,500 ml for the food sector. The new extrusion head has been jointly developed by German and Chinese engineers at Kautex.
Country Focus Kautex will unveil a newly developed sixlayer extrusion head for its blow moulding machine
At the show, the KCC10S MK3 will be producing a 1,000 ml sixlayer milk bottle. The single station machine has a CP50 extrusion head, the first six-layer head for consumer packaging made in the Chinese factory. The heads of this new series have a minimum centre distance of 140 mm and will be available with up to six parisons. The extrusion heads are made at Kautex’s Chinese Kautex plant in Shunde. Kautex also now operates three technical research centres around the world, in Germany, US, and at the end of 2018 it opened another one in Shunde. Here, new applications are developed, prototypes and pilot moulds are produced and materials and production processes are tested. Meanwhile, German thermoforming machine maker Kiefel will showcase its automatic pressure forming machine KMD 78.1, touted as “fast for high volumes, economic for smaller jobs”, in the production of food or non-food articles. It can also be used with most thermoforming materials such as PP, PE, PS APET or CPET to produce products like trays, containers, hinged boxes, blisters, bowls, lids and inserts, says Kiefel.
Kiefel will showcase its automatic pressure forming machine
Kiefel says it was a forerunner in integrated plug-assist drive and BFS system in KMD type machine addressing increasing product challenges. The machines have a modular design and are configurable to customers’ requirements. At Chinaplas, the pressure forming machine will produce trays from PP film material with a 12-up cavity tool. Complete with a watertight lid the tray is targeted for take-away soups or liquids. Auxiliary equipment to aid the processing sector Stuttgart-headquartered Coperion GmbH has reason to celebrate this year since it will be the 15th anniversary of its STS twin-screw extruder, which has now been expanded by one more extruder size: the new STS 25 Mc11 extruder with a 25 mm screw diameter. The latter is designed especially for R&D as well as for production of small batch sizes and will be shown for the first time at Chinaplas.
In addition Coperion will present a twin screw extruder ZSK 58 Mc18, an SP 320 treasure strand pelletiser, a Coperion K-Tron Quick Change Coperion’s twin-screw ZSK twinfeeder outfitted screw extruder with ActiFlow bulk solids activator, Electronic Pressure Compensation (EPC) and 2415 vacuum receiver for refill as well as the K-MLBSP-150-S Bulk Solids Pump (BSP) feeder for granular materials. Also on display is Coperion’s dual channel diverter valve WZKC for powders and granular products and a ZVH rotary valve. The new STS 25 Mc11 extruder boasts all the advantages of the STS Mc11 series. It has a simple design, is operator-friendly and easy to clean, being ideally suited for the production of small batch sizes of 2 kg and more and achieves throughputs of up to 90 kg/hour. By having the same screw diameter ratio Do/Di (outer screw diameter to inner screw diameter) of 1.55 and the same maximum specific torque Md/a³ of 11.3 Nm/cm³ as the rest of the STS Mc11 extruder series, production parameters of the STS 25 Mc11 can be scaled up to larger STS sizes. The STS 25 Mc11 to be exhibited at Chinaplas will be shown with the Coperion K-Tron K-ML-SFS-KT20 twin-screw feeder. As a representative of its high-end ZSK twin-screw extruder series, Coperion will exhibit a ZSK 58 Mc18 extruder with 58 mm screw diameter at Chinaplas. With its specific torque of 18 Nm/cm3 it reaches highest throughput rates and is energy efficient. It will be on display outfitted with a Coperion K-Tron feeder: a K2-ML-D5-S60 singlescrew feeder for free flowing pellets or powders. The SP 320 strand pelletiser also on display is ideally suited for processing of highly abrasive reinforced products. It has a working width of 320 mm, can process up to 80 strands at throughput rates of up to 2,500 kg/hour. Tailored to the Chinese market, it boasts a quality standard and an attractive price/performance ratio. It was developed in cooperation between Coperion Pelletizing Technology in Germany and Coperion Nanjing, China. The cutting chamber is made in Germany with the rest of the assembly manufactured in Nanjing. Coperion K-Tron will exhibit the K2-ML-D5-T35/S60 Quick Change feeder, featuring the ActiFlow bulk solids activator and EPC in combination with a 2400 Series vacuum receiver for refill. The T35/S60 is designed for applications requiring quick changeover of materials and convenience of fast cleaning. The ActiFlow smart bulk solids activator offers a method to reliably prevent bridging and rat-holing of cohesive bulk materials in stainless steel hoppers without internal hopper agitation. ActiFlow is a non-product contact device, consisting of a patent-pending vibratory drive and intelligent control
unit, designed specifically to work with Coperion K-Tron’s line of gravimetric loss-in-weight feeders. The T35 is also equipped with Coperion K-Tron’s EPC for loss-in-weight feeders, and is touted as a “clever but simple electronic solution for accurate and steady pressure compensation in feeder hoppers and outlets”. Switzerland-based pelletising provider Maag will focus on BAOLI-3 third-generation dry-cut pelletisers for processing hard and soft materials. The key components of these pelletisers are manufactured in Germany. Maag says it has already installed around 800 BAOLI pelletisers in China. BAOLI pelletiser from Maag
From its extensive range of gear pumps, Maag will be presenting the extrex gear pump in x6 class design at Chinaplas. As with all x6 versions, Maag has completely re-engineered and redesigned all the components, from the shafts through to the bearings and seals, and optimised the interaction of the components. An ERF350 melt filter from Ettlinger will also be shown. Designed for especially high efficiency, it achieves a maximum throughput of 3,800 kg/hour, depending on the type of melt and degree of impurities as well as the selected filtration rating. It is suitable for all commonly used polyolefins and PS as well as a large number of technical plastics such as styrene copolymers, TPE and TPU. To answer questions on raw material behaviour and reaction at various temperatures, auxiliary equipment maker Brabender, supported by its local agent Melchers, will be on hand to assist visitors as well as present torque rheometers, measuring mixers and extruders as well as instruments for specific measuring tasks. It will show its renowned Plastograph EC, a torque rheometer used for R&D in laboratories and simulation.
Brabender’s and the Melchers team will be on hand for visitors to Chinaplas
Country Focus With its digital 3.8-kW motor, a torque measuring range of 200 Nm and a speed range from 0.2 to 150 min-1, it is best suited for practice-oriented measurements with mixers and extruders from Brabender’s range of measuring heads. The focus of Sikora, meanwhile, will be its Purity Scanner Advanced for online inspection and sorting of plastic material. The system combines X-ray with optical technology and detects contamination inside plastic pellets as well as on the surface. For sample testing or incoming goods inspection and analysis of plastic material, Sikora presents the Purity Concept V, where material samples, placed on a sample
Sikora’s Centerwave 6000 for online pipe dimension measurement in extrusion lines
tray, are moved through the inspection area and the material inspected automatically by a colour camera and a projector marks the contaminated material directly on the sample tray. For a 100% quality control during the extrusion of pipes, Sikora will exhibit the Centerwave 6000. Millimeter wave technology measures the diameter, ovality, wall thickness and the inner profile (sagging) of the product. It does not require any coupling media, is not influenced by temperature or the plastic material and measures without the need of any calibration, says Sikora. Recycling shaken up in the country; bodes well for machine maker Last year, China shook up the global recycling business with its decision to restrict imports of scrap plastic, scrap cardboard and other rubbish. This augurs well for Austria’s Erema Group that says the increasing demand for its machinery is reflected in a new turnover record of the group of companies of EUR180 million, with half of this volume generated in Europe. The increase, it says, is due to growing sales worldwide in all three recycling markets: post-consumer (contaminated and used plastics), in-house and industrial (clean production waste), and bottle recycling (PET, foodcontact-grade). It offers the Vacurema technology and new processes based on it, such as the flakes to preforms Xtreme Renew System developed together with Italian firm Sipa; and the latest bottle-to-bottle system Vacunite.
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STS Mc11 TWIN SCREW COMPOUNDER. HIGHEST STANDARD. LOW INVEST. + + + + +
Max. speciﬁc torque of 11.3�Nm/cm3 Highest throughput rates Constant high product quality Fast return on investment Proven high Coperion manufacturing standards
CHINAPLAS | Guangzhou, China | Booth 5.1M11
May 21�-�24, 2019 STS Mc11 compounder dominates in its class: with best price-performance ratio, highest quality components, easy installation and operation, European safety standards, full process and quality know-how of Coperion and much more. www.coperion.com/sts-mc11-compounder
Extrusion Machinery At Chinaplas 2019, various machinery makers will be showing a selection of extrusion machinery concepts for the Asian market.
SML’s latest triplex extrusion lamination line for aseptic board packaging
SML’s triplex extrusion laminating line; MDO unit and PET sheet processing Austrian extrusion machinery maker SML will focus on a new triplex extrusion lamination line for aseptic board packaging, where interaction between different unwinding units and three laminators, managing different materials like paper, board and aluminium, is one of the essential characteristics. The complex line features the newly introduced automation system in combination with a powerful data logging system, allowing for maximum traceability and quality control to the end user. Based on decades of experience, SML has also designed a new mono-axial direction orientation (MDO) unit that offers flexibility in terms of processing a variety of different film types and structures in large film widths. Its main advantage lies in its ability to control film properties through the inline variation of the stretching gap between 70 and 350 mm using a servomotor. This is significant because the best PP and PE film characteristics result with a shorter gap, while a longer gap is required when stretching PET film. SML says results are guaranteed in terms of improved visual qualities, achieved tenacity, increased barrier properties and reduced film thickness as well as breathability for hygiene applications. SML’s third focus is on its extrusion concepts for PET/rPET sheet production, where it will assist its customers in the selection of the best extrusion system for their application and available feedstock. The latter will be a single-screw extrusion with predrying, recycling extruder or conical twin-screw extruder, with what it says will be “moderate capital expenditure, along with high output, reduced energy consumption, ease of operation and minimised need for maintenance”. Creating more layers for blown films High barrier film lines like nine-layers have been the focus for the last few years, with EVOH, PA, adhesives and layers of polyolefins combined to reach the required film properties. Ultrathin layers of only 1 micron need to be guaranteed under production conditions, tolerances are low and quality standards are extremely high. Now, Germany’s Hosokawa Alpine is moving to introduce its 11-layer line, which it debuted at K2016. It says benefits are the production of “standard” barrier film with 5-9 layers and the additional opportunities to create new film structures with two more functional layers. One of the highlights from compatriot machine manufacturer Windmöller & Hölscher (W&H) will be on the manufacture of surface protection films, FFS films and barrier films with up to 11 layers for blown film applications. W&H´s cast film line Filmex application ranges from nanolayer stretch films with up to 55 layers to barrier, CPE and CPP applications. The Aquarex upside-down line for the production of films for infusion bags also attracts considerable interest. “The need for new innovative quality forms for special fields of application is increasing and with their developments,” said Michael Fischer, CEO W&H Asia Pacific. This applies to market trends such as PET replacement film in lamination applications with PE/PE which are fully recyclable. Due to W&H´s MDO technology and process know-how, these PE/PE films achieve not only outstanding flatness, high modulus and transparency for perfect printing but also high stiffness and temperature resistant outer layer for excellent stand-up pouch properties, said W&H.
Hosokawa Alpine will introduce its 11-layer line, which it debuted at K2016
Focus on specialty films and circular economy Germany’s Brückner Maschinenbau will present its latest stretching lines for technical/speciality films as well as solutions for better recyclable packaging films.
Extrusion Machinery Manufacturing oriented speciality films for optical applications needs an elaborate high temperature oven. Typical applications are BOPI films for base film and cover glass in flexible displays, or PTFE membranes, used in clothing. Brückner says its newly developed high temperature ovens provide temperature uniformity as well as very tight tolerances in air velocity – both necessary to produce high quality film with a low yield. Additionally, the special chain track systems ensure a smooth film guiding in order to reach the dedicated mechanical properties. Combined with its automation system and a low energy consumption, the production costs for highly special films can be reduced to a minimum, says the firm. Meanwhile, since recyclability of plastic materials as well as the strengthening of a circular economy is a top agenda currently, at Chinaplas, Brückner presents a new BOPE line concept for the flexible packaging market. It features new mono-material solution as substitution of not recyclable multilayer structures and material composites. Also, a highlight will be the new inline coating system, in cooperation with German coating specialist Kroenert, whereby manufacturing of mono-material high barrier films allows for better sorting and recycling. It reduces further converting/laminating steps and is available as retrofit for existing production lines through Brückner. Reifenhäuser introduces first five-layer line for heavy-duty sacks German extrusion machinery maker Reifenhäuser has added another feather to its cap: a five-layer blown film line for the production of FFS film, targeted at heavy-duty shipping sacks (HDSS). Bernd Schroeter, Director Product Management summarises the advantages of the new line: “Our Evolution five-layer FFS line offers significant advantages over conventional three-layer films, including higher output, improved dart impact, improved puncture resistance and the option of using recycled material as the core layer.” Schroeter went on to add, “As the only manufacturer of five-layer FFS lines for this application, we impress with our technology that enables the down-gauging of HDSS films. Cost savings result due to the thinner skin layers that require less costly resin and additives, and the ability to use cheaper, recycled resin in the core layer.” The firm says it is able to achieve this thanks to the barrier properties of the subskin layer, which prevents the migration of any additives from the core into the skin. The
result: more flexibility in film recipes, and improved film properties because of the clean outer layers. It presented the line during an open house held by Russian plastics processor KZPM. Eugen Friedel, Sales Director at Reifenhäuser Blown Film, said of the line running at KZPM, “The line achieved an output of 430.5 kg/hour of film with a thickness of 125 mm and a profile tolerance of 2.2% Sigma. Equally convincing is the strength with a dart drop value of 680 or 5.4 g/l.”
Reducing production costs with EVOLUTION ULTRA FLAT With EVOLUTION ULTRA FLAT excellent web flatness properties can be obtained in the production of films. That means improvement in quality and efficiency. Films with optimum flatness provide for better printing quality at higher printing speeds and higher bond strength in lamination processes while reducing the use of adhesives.
Find more information about us online on www.reifenhauser-bf.com You have questions? email@example.com
Visit us in Hall 5.1, Booth A63 21 – 24 May 2019
Extrusion Machinery Reifenhäuser has innovated a five-layer blown film line for the production of FFS film for heavyduty sacks
He went on to say that these values can only be reached with major effort on a three-layer line, adding that there is a huge scope for replacing three-layer lines with five-layer ones. Cast film lines and “green” concepts For Italy’s Amut Group, the focus is on cast lines for the production of stretch film. It says it has now realised a system named Q-Catcher, capable of improving the quality of film by recalling the proper setting when the line is in operation. ProWind 4.0 “super-fast” winder is another hallmark of Amut’s technology for flexible packaging films. To comply with the worldwide growing demand for green solutions, Amut has developed together with Austrian recycling machine supplier Erema a concept for rPET bottle to packaging application. The extrusion line processes 100% post-consumer bottle flakes into
Amut offers the ProWind 4.0 winder for flexible packaging films
food grade single layer film, which is FDA and EFSA approved. Also, the technology for waterproofing membranes production is important for Amut since it says it is a reputed partner in the Asian market, thanks to its references in China and visibility reached after regularly collaborating with the China National Building Waterproof Association. It will also have the ACF 820-PLUS thermoforming machine in operation at its booth using rPET film made on the Amut/Erema extrusion line and Ingeo PLA film. Ingeo is provided by NatureWorks and both companies have recently started a collaboration to propose PLA for food contact packaging.
Additives FRX and Yoo-Point to produce emulsions for PU foam in China US halogen-free flame retardant (FR) solutions provider FRX Polymers has tied up with China’s Yoo-Point Group for the production of water-based emulsions that contain FRX’s Nofia phosphonate halogen-free flame retardants. The emulsions are particularly suited for use in polyurethane (PU) coatings and low-density flexible PU foam.
FRX and China’s Yoo-Point will jointly develop waterbased emulsions in China
Due to Nofia FR’s less than 400-nm particle size in the emulsion, the material is said to deliver stability and flame retardant properties in addition to a low total volatile organic components (TVOC) rating, allowing PU foams and coatings to meet strict automotive interior specifications. Under the joint development agreement, Yoo-Point, a resin producer for the coatings market, will market and sell the new Nofia FR-based emulsions to customers in China. Meanwhile, FRX will be responsible for marketing and commercialisation outside of China. FRX says its Nofia FR water-based emulsion is already enjoying commercial success in PU-based foams and coatings in China. Nofia FRs meet not only fire safety standards but also new VOC and fogging standards and quality regulations like China's GB/T 27630-201X. While the water-based emulsion is targeted at lowdensity PU foam applications such as automotive headliners and PU coatings for FR clothing, rain gear, and synthetic leather addition to PU, the system could also be incorporated in other resins that are compatible with Nofia FRs. BASF’s light stabiliser used in greenhouse films in Vietnam The government of Vietnam recently pumped in a US$4.4 billion package to develop high-tech agriculture. Better flower and fruit varieties are being developed,
The World’s No. 1 Trade Fair for Plastics and Rubber
Additives and field production is gradually moving towards protected cultivation, precision and automatic irrigation, computerised crop management systems, and applying greenhouse technologies. German chemical firm BASF and Tân Hùng Co' Masterbatch Manufacture Co say they are working to help farmers increase their yields and save resources with more durable greenhouse films. Tân Hùng Co', a manufacturer of additive masterbatches for plastic films in Vietnam, is now using BASF’s plastic additive Tinuvin NOR 371 to increase durability and lifespan of plastic greenhouse films made from LDPE, allowing weathering of up to 4 years. To get the most out of greenhouse technologies, light stabilisers added during manufacturing make the films resistant to the intense sunlight and heat that develops at the contact points with the metallic greenhouse frame. If not, plastic films can become brittle and break within a few weeks.
H o m e I n n o v a t i o n . K 2 0 1 9
No matter what your focus is – circular The light stabiliser extends the useful life of greenhouse film by withstanding the effects of weathering for at least three to four years, reducing the cost for growers and less waste in the environment
economy, digitalisation, Industry 4.0,
Tinuvin NOR 371 provides degradation from ultraviolet (UV) rays, thermal stress and oxidation. With durable films that last for several seasons, farmers can cover greenhouses for growing chrysanthemums, roses and strawberries for the export market – thereby increasing yields of profitable crops while saving resources and reducing waste. Additionally, the additive helps to ensure greenhouse films can be used in a variety of growing conditions. Although the sulphur compounds approved as agricultural products to prevent and combat fungal diseases are ecologically safe, chemically they deactivate the light stabilisers and accelerate their breakdown. To counter this deactivation of light stabilisers, BASF says its NOR technology stablisers for greenhouse films are added. These are particularly resistant to sulphur compounds and other agrochemicals, offering stability that enables farmers to produce profitably for several growing seasons.
other forward-looking topics in the global
manufacturing, advanced materials or p l a s t i c s a n d r u b b e r i n d u s t r y – K 2 019 i s the place to be to scout for new solutions. The fascinating forum for innovation and investment. The industry’s most important business platform. Around 3,200 international exhibitors offer you the latest in r esear ch and de velopment. We l c o m e t o t h e s h o w ! www.k -online.com/ticketing
Messe Düsseldorf GmbH P.O. Box 10 10 06 _ 40001 Düsseldorf _ Germany Tel. +49 211 4560 01 _ Fax +49 211 4560 668
Emery Oleochemicals Renewable Plastic Additives Since 1957
o minimise the consumption of fossil resources and to reduce the carbon footprint, the demand for sustainable, renewable, bio-based or “green” products is constantly increasing. Emery Oleochemicals is a leading global producer of natural-based chemicals made predominantly from natural oils and fats that are readily available to meet this demand. Through its Green Polymer Additives (GPA) business unit, the company offers a comprehensive product portfolio of processing and performance additives for plastics, including lubricants, release agents, special plasticizers and surface modifiers.
the finished plastics part itself. Lubricants and release agents enable or optimise the production, and special plasticizers improve the performance of the final plastics products while being stable against migration. Antistatic and antifogging agents improve the finished article by altering the plastics surface. Committed to contribute to a more sustainable future, Emery Oleochemicals continues to manufacture its products mainly from bio-based feedstock. However, not all LOXIOL® and EDENOL® products are 100% bio-based. Why is this? Not all building blocks of polymer additives are reliably available from bio-based sources. While bio-based feedstock is always the preferred option, the technical suitability, the targeted performance or the achievement of the desired effect takes priority. Currently, three out of four products in the Green Polymer Additives portfolio contain at least 50% bio-based feedstock. And, Emery’s GPA technical development experts are constantly working to replace fossil-based feedstock with sustainable alternatives.
Since 1957, Emery Oleochemicals has offered natural-based lubricants for plastics processing under the brand name LOXIOL®. The global volume of plastics products in the 1950’s was a mere fraction of today’s volumes. However, LOXIOL® additives have been a constant part of plastics processing since the beginning of the plastics age. Today, LOXIOL® products are still predominantly made from bio-based, renewable raw materials such as fatty acids, fatty alcohols or glycerol derivatives. The company also offers renewable plastic additives under its brand name EDENOL®, covering specialty plasticizers. LOXIOL® and EDENOL® additives are designed to achieve specific performance benefits in plastics such as an improvement of the manufacturing process or of
The list of examples is extensive where bio-based additives are comparable to, or even outperform, fossil-based additives. One of these examples is the replacement of hydrocarbon waxes such as paraffin, Fischer-Tropsch and polyethylene waxes. This product group is often used as external lubricants since they are incompatible to many polymer substrates due to a difference in polarity; thus causing them to migrate to the
Comparison of hydrocarbon waxes and LOXIOL® external lubricants surface. Bio-based external lubricants necessarily contain some polar moieties in their molecules such as ester bonds. Due to their molecular design, these moieties are cloaked and the bio-based molecule appears to have a non-polar shell. However, a bio-based additive is slightly more compatible to the polymer resulting in a better distribution over the surface. This, in turn, offers cost benefits since it is possible to utilise these additives in lower dosages. Another example is the alternative to montanic wax and its derivatives. Montanic wax is extracted from brown coal through the use of hazardous chemicals in the refining and bleaching processes. A very limited number of sources for montanic waxes resulted in a severe shortage about one decade ago. Although the shortage has now been overcome, the number of sources is still small. However, multiple LOXIOL® products can successfully be used as alternatives. They are free of montanic compounds, but offer similar performance with natural-based benefits. And, through use of renewable sources, Emery Oleochemicals can offer security of supply of these products to the compounder, masterbatcher or polymer processor. Renewable LOXIOL® and EDENOL® plastic additives are not just a passing trend. They are backed by over 60 years of technical expertise and plastics industry knowledge. The pioneers of this technology are also its ongoing innovators: Emery Oleochemicals.
Visit Emery Oleochemicals at this year’s Chinaplas, the 33rd international exhibition on plastics and rubber industries, being held in Guangzhou, China from May 21st to 24th. Emery’s Green Polymer Additives team looks forward to meeting you at Booth # A61 in Hall 10.2. We also invite you to attend our technical presentation about bio-based lubricants and discuss with our technical experts how our renewable plastic additives can meet your specific performance and sustainability requirements.
About Emery Oleochemicals Emery Oleochemicals is a leading global producer of natural-based chemicals made predominantly from natural oils and fats. We offer an extensive product portfolio, including renewable solutions for the Agro Green, Bio-Lubricants, Eco-Friendly Polyols, Green Polymer Additives, Home & Personal Wellness and OleoBasics markets. With revenue of US$631 million (2018), the company is headquartered in Malaysia and has manufacturing plants and Technical Development Centers spanning three regions – North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. Emery Oleochemicals's global operations are supported by a diverse workforce and an extensive global distribution network covering over 50 countries worldwide. For more information, visit www.emeryoleo.com.
An essential measure for the circular economy Plastic waste desecrating beaches and rivers or oozing out of the ruptured belly of a dead fish has given rise to a negative image of plastics. Unsurprisingly, therefore, that the circular economy is one of the leading issues at this year's K2019 trade fair, to be held in Düsseldorf, Germany, from 16-23 October 2019. Visitors to this event will be greeted by a variety of proposals and solutions relating to this “green” topic. The industry has achieved much in recent years, as demonstrated in several examples.
Plastics use growing The fact is that, with perhaps the exception of a few indigenous peoples, not one of the 7.5 billion inhabitants of this planet could live a normal life without plastic, regardless of whether they are conscious of this or not. After all, plastics have for some considerable time now been used in more applications than toys, household appliances and packaging. Plastics also provide important – indeed almost essential – solutions to problems in the transportation and electronics industries and the medical sector. What are the ramifications of the present situation for the plastics industry, and what options does recycling offer today? The plastics industry is defending itself against accusations, but it must present concepts for the future and demonstrate that plastic and environmental protection are compatible. Issues such as waste collection systems and collection rates, recovery methods, recycling and the circular economy are now more centre stage than ever before. The demand for plastics continues to rise – despite, it would seem, the poor image. In its report “Plastics – The Facts”, Plastics Europe pointed out that the production of plastics worldwide was 348 million tonnes in 2017, around 4% higher than in 2016. In Europe, the output of the 28 EU countries plus Norway and Switzerland rose from 60 to 64.4 million tonnes (up 7%). Europe accounts for around a fifth of global production, placing it second among producers, after China (29%) and just ahead of the NAFTA region (18%). Packaging, followed by construction and auto Almost 40% of plastics produced, indeed the largest proportion, is sourced by the packaging industry where it provides important protection during transportation and ensures the shelf life of goods, making a substantial contribution to environmental protection in the process. In the packaging industry, plastic is frequently the material of choice when it comes to the resource-efficient provision of products and services. Plastics mainly reduce the consumption of resources in the usage phase, which is frequently overlooked when the question of resource conservation arises solely in relation to the handling of waste. This is also the case when it comes to the second most important customer for plastics: the construction industry. This sector consumes almost 20% of all plastics. The automotive industry uses around 10% of output, achieving the highest level of growth in a comparison of 2016 and 2017. The advantageous of plastics are particularly evident in the car, given their lightness and adaptability in a variety of applications. Their impact on the reduction of the carbon footprint is decisive. Curbing marine pollution A look at different consumer sectors clearly indicates that the usage duration for plastic products differs greatly, and this in turn influences recycling rates and options. However, as Plastics Europe has established in its study, the appreciation that plastics are much too valuable to simply discard them at the end of their service life, has grown in Europe. Recycling of plastic waste increased by almost 80% in the ten years between 2006 and 2016. At 40.9%, plastic packaging now accounts for the majority of recycling, followed by energetic recovery at 38.8%.
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More than 80% of marine debris comes from land-based sources, with roughly 50% originating from just five Asian countries
The compulsion to act that is born of the public perception of plastic waste has contributed to a range of new laws governing higher recycling rates. Following China's lead, other Southeast Asian countries (and Taiwan in December 2018) have imposed import restrictions on plastic waste. Landfill bans on plastic waste are already in force in ten European countries. Following its prohibition of plastic bags on 1 January 2019, Italy also imposed a ban on cotton buds made of plastic. Legislation with similar rules has been drafted and should become law throughout the EU in 2021. Criticism is also directed at other disposable plastic items such as cutlery, plates, drinking straws, stirrers and balloon sticks. Together with fishing gear, these account for 70% of the 8 million tonnes of plastic that end up in the oceans every year. The EU Commission has proposed requiring that these objects be manufactured from environmentally friendlier, more perishable materials in future. Disposable beverage cups made of plastic should only be permitted if the lid and seal are permanently attached components. RPC Tedeco-Gizeh, the only British manufacturer of vending machine cups, has adopted a solution for the recycling of plastic cups. Together with BPI Recycling, its affiliated company, it offers all operators of drinks machines a collection service, recycling the cups recovered to manufacture new products.
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RPC Tedeco-Gizeh, UKâ€™s sole manufacturer of plastic vending cups, is launching a recycling initiative to help customers recycle their used cups
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Recycling Coca-Cola has also been very active for years now in efforts to offer customers more sustainable bottle variants. It is now taking further steps with regard to chemical recycling of PET packaging, which is then used to manufacturer new bottles. A PET upcycling plant is currently being established in the Netherlands in cooperation with Dutch start-up Ioniqa Technologies in Eindhoven.
In Indonesia, the challenge is acute with just 60% of waste collected by municipals. The STOP project (PT Systemiq Lestari Indonesia), which helps cities design and then implement a low-cost waste management system, is assisting the country
One exemplary initiative deserving of mention is STOP (Stop Ocean Plastics). Launched by Borealis AG and SYSTEMIQ, in conjunction with the Norwegian government, Nova Chemicals, Borouge and Veolia, STOP has now gained a new strategic partner – namely Nestlé, the world's largest food company. The common goal here is to make a pioneering contribution to the prevention of marine pollution in Southeast Asia. Nestle has also pledged to ensure that all its packaging is recyclable or reusable by 2025. Numerous recycling concepts are already in operation PET bottles are the perfect example of packaging items that are perfectly recyclable, mainly on a bottle-tobottle basis and not infrequently to a rate of 100%. The proportion of PET bottles recycled in Europe in 2017 totalled 58.2%. This said, striking differences are evident between countries. Whereas recycling rates of up to 95% are recorded in Germany and Finland, a study conducted by PETcore indicates that some Mediterranean countries struggle to achieve 40%. Vöslauer, the Austrian mineral water producer, switched to 100% rPET bottles at the beginning of 2019 for all its water varieties, and this was extended to its flavoured range in April. It says it has even succeeded in reducing material consumption by around one quarter when compared to Vöslauer has switched to 100% other rPET bottles. rPET bottles for its beverages
Coca-Cola is working with Dutch start-up Ioniqa on a PET upcycling plant at the Chemelot Campus in Geleen, Netherlands
Effective collection and recovery systems have also existed for some time now for PVC window profiles, and the volumes involved here have increased from year to year. Within the Rewindo recycling initiative, an amalgamation of leading German plastic profile manufacturers succeeded in 2015 in processing over 27,000 tonnes of recycled material from old windows, roller blinds and doors and refeeding it back into the production process. Rewindo has processed over 27,000 tonnes of recycled material from old windows since 2015
In conjunction with waste from the plastic profile cutting required for tolerance production of new plastic windows, over 100,000 tonnes of recovered PVC found its way back onto the market. Rewindo says that this saves resources and energy and contributes to a reduction in the carbon footprint.
Recycling There are, of course, numerous other functional recycling systems (e.g. for PE bottle crates) which cannot all be mentioned here, but it can generally be said that the purer a recovered plastic is, the better it can be reprocessed for new products. Genuine cases of production waste have been practically eliminated. This is either returned directly to the current production process, or forwarded to specialised processing companies. One of these is Hoffmann + Voss in Germany. It specialises in the treatment of engineering plastic waste, refining it to produce high-quality recompounds which are used in the automotive industry in place of new materials. Reprocessing is always more difficult where mixed plastic waste is involved, but even here functional concepts already exist, as evident in Hahn Kunststoffe in Germany. Every year, around 50,000 tonnes of waste from the mixed fraction are given a new lease of life in the form of railings, noise barriers, posts, bollards, flower boxes, waste containers and playground or municipal furnishings. Although these recovery concepts are effective and interesting in themselves, the question does arise as to the practicality of processing all residual plastics, or whether it would be better to use those which are difficult to recover as fuel to replace fossil resources in incineration plants.
2,000+ Exhibitors 5,000+ Machines 18+ International Pavilions
Recycling raw materials as an alternative The issue of recycling raw materials and the recovery of unmixed initial monomers has garnered greater attention recently, with more and more companies launching R&D projects, such as Coca-Cola which exploits chemical recycling of PET packaging. Chemical firm Sabic recently announced that, in conjunction with UKâ€™s Plastic Energy, it would be establishing a plant in the Netherlands that would process commercial volumes of mixed plastic waste to produce oil which, in turn, would then be used as a raw material for new plastics. Starting material recovered in this manner conserves fossil resources and is a good example of a functioning circular economy. However, nascent projects of this kind need time to take root. Circular concepts already exist in which newly filled, coloured or specific additive compounds are created from plastic waste and can be used by plastics processors to manufacture new substitutes for many products. Minimal or absolutely no adjustments need be made for the use of so-called recompounds, as manufacturers of injection moulding and extrusion plants continually emphasise. The importance of these efforts is demonstrated in the latest investments made by major raw material manufacturers. For example, 2016 saw the takeover of mtm plastics in Niedergebra by Borealis. The former has a plant capacity of 30,000 tonnes/year and manufactures recycled polyolefins from mixed plastic waste. Together with processing firm Suez, chemical firm LyondellBasell took control of QCP BV in the Netherlands last year, a company whose processing plant has a current capacity 35,000 tonnes/year and manufactures PE and PP recompounds from post-consumer packaging. The year 2018 also saw the purchase by Albis of Wipag GmbH, the recycler and closed-loop process specialist from Neuburg. Having specialised in the automotive sector for decades, Wipag has now even developed a process for recovering the robust material CFRP (composite fibre-reinforced plastic) and enabling its reuse. Recycling is not only a designated product category at K2019, but is also discussed in the K Specials, as is the entire field of Circular Economy. The special show "Plastics shape the Future" aims to involve both politicians and socially relevant groups, while the "Science Campus" of K2019 stands for the dialogue between science and business. MAY 2019
High performance plastics as innovation drivers Current developments in the automotive industry are being made possible with new engineering plastics materials that meet durability, lightweight and cost efficient requirements, says Angelica Buan in this report.
Trinseo’s new ABS LGF enables high dimensional stability and high stiffness, making it a lightweight alternative for semi-structural components
he diamond stone, believed to be the hardest material on earth, has been revered for centuries for its “indestructible” properties. Times have changed and man has discovered there are far tougher and stronger materials, such as carbon nanotubes, graphene, and others that are more sustainable than mining diamonds. Materials like plastics have become the backbone for developing high performance, stronger, tougher, lighter weight, and with more physical properties, suited for a broader range of industrial applications. Cornered in this is the engineering plastics market that is projected to grow exponentially, creating multi-billion dollar opportunities. A recent report from Markets and Markets forecasts the global engineering plastics market to cross US$115 billion by 2023 from US$81 billion in 2018. The key drivers for the market are growing end-use industries and replacement of traditional materials such as metals, aluminium, and commodity plastics, especially in the automotive arena. Revving up efficiency in automotive applications The largest end-use industry for engineering plastics is the automotive and transportation for applications such as connectors and housing, under-the-hood components, wheels and more. The demand for engineering plastics in the automotive and transportation industry in vehicle importing and producing countries is driving the market. The market specifically for the automotive plastics segment is poised to expand at a CAGR of 11.5% from 2019 to 2025 from US$31.7 billion in 2018, as reported by Grand View Research. Engineering plastics used for vehicles are required to be durable, strong, recyclable, as well as be scratch, abrasion and chemical resistant; be able to improve vibration and noise control; and allow design and integration of components. Now that fuel efficiency is a significant benchmark in vehicles, light weighting can be achieved using plastics. While plastic make up half of the total volume of a modern car, plastics contribute only 10% of the car’s total weight. In consideration of lighweighting, US materials manufacturer Trinseo has launched a nylon that can replace metal in semi-structural components, providing up to 30% weight savings compared to magnesium or aluminium. Trinseo’s new ABS LGF enables high dimensional stability and high stiffness, making it the lightweight alternative for semistructural components, it said. As a structural polymer, the ABS LGF material offers not only lower weight than magnesium, but also low VOC and low odour properties, and enables faster production cycle times. It has been used in the new BMW 3 Series. Working in co-operation with German automotive component supplier Dräxlmaier, Trinseo was able to optimise the behaviour of the material in terms of stiffness, warpage, crash and head impact, creating very narrow tolerances, and stability of the final component. Norwin van Riel, Technology Leader at Trinseo, stated that the new ABS LGF alloy product has enabled them to develop a thermoplastic composite that
Engineering Plastics combines high stiffness over a broad temperature range with high dimensional stability, which facilitates lighter weight designs in comparison to aluminium and magnesium without affecting stability. Advancing electromobility with new solutions Electromobility is anticipated to be in the mainstream and thus, the trend may generate larger use of functional plastics in the coming years. The global plastics in electric vehicle (EV) market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 43% from 2018 to 2023, as reported by Industry ARC. Plastics in EVs are used in cooling pipes, fans, reinforcement, battery packs, cells and many other applications. German speciality chemicals firm Evonik is zeroing in on the emerging electromobility trend with its PA12, PEEK, and polyimide materials. The Essenheadquartered company says it is steering to meeting the demand for cooling, low friction, electrically insulating, fast charging and secure data transfer in electric vehicles and in self-driving cars. Evonik's flameresistant Vestamid PA12 can meet the requirements of EV charging equipment
Hybrid and EVs require highly efficient thermal management, which is needed not only for the highvoltage battery but also for the other essential highvoltage components, such as the electric motor and converter or inverter, Evonik explained. In addition to mono-layer tubing based on its Vestamid PA12, Evonik has also developed the MLT 8000 multilayer tubing system for thermal management applications. Vestamid is, likewise, suitable for tubing in a vehicle’s interior AC system. For electric vehicle charging, which requires quick charging times, equipment for this purpose can befit from flame-resistant Vestamid PA12 and Vestakeep PEEK, which are suitable for use as insulation for cables or busbars in the battery module or electric motor, and as plug components of the high-voltage charging, and on-board system. Meanwhile, Dutch firm DSM Engineering Plastics has introduced a new PPS (polyphenylene sulphide) grade to optimize the performance of EV thermal management systems. Xytron G4080HR is a 40% glass-reinforced PPS engineered for heat ageing performance, hydrolysis resistance, dimensional stability, chemical resistance at elevated temperatures and intrinsic flame retardancy.
DSM has expanded its EV thermal portfolio with a new PPS grade
The new grade is also said to maintain its strength at continuous operating temperatures exceeding 130°C for 6,000 to 10,000 hours. In a recent 3,000 hour 135°C water-glycol fluid test versus a comparable competitor grade, Xytron G4080HR delivered 114% higher tensile strength and 63% higfher elongation at break, according to DSM. The material is manufactured by DSM NHU Engineering Plastics (Zhejiang), a joint venture of DSM and speciality chemicals producer Zhejiang NHU Special Materials (NHU). Specialised plastics charging ahead in battery manufacturing German chemical company BASF, together with Joma-Polytec Gmbh and Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell, a subsidiary of Daimler AG, has hatched a development project to provide solutions for thermal stability, media resistance, and durability requirements for hybrid, plug-in and electric vehicles. BASF's Ultramid is being used as a standard in the Mercedes GLC F-CELL
BASF says its engineering plastic Ultramid, in grades A3WG10 CR and A3EG7 EQ, has been used to manufacture a number of fuel cell system components, and is being used as standard in the new Mercedes GLC F-CELL, which combines a fuel cell with a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. BASF says Ultramid’s properties count with good thermal and chemical resistance, dynamic stiffness, impact strength, and good long-term performance. MAY 2019
Engineering Plastics US speciality chemicals company DuPont, on the other hand, offers alternative drivetrain technologies enabled by the AHEAD (Accelerating Hybrid-Electric Autonomous Driving) initiative, launched by the DowDuPont Specialty Products Division in 2018. The AHEAD initiative aims to provide solutions for lightweighting, battery pack components and assembly, thermal management/safety, electric motors, powertrain/ chassis, electrical/electronic applications for improved automation. These include driver assist and self-driving capabilities; and support infrastructure (plug-in and induction charging stations). The firm recently showcased a multi-material full-size battery module prototype, along with e-motor, electrical/ electronics, sensing and control solutions, at a show in Germany. Asia, a key driver for growth Asia, a vital innovation depot for the automotive sector, is anticipated to account for larger demand for engineering plastics, being that the region has been witnessing rapid industrialisation, thus spurring demand for high performance materials in major industries. Thus, South Korean engineering plastics company Seyang Polymer is ramping up its manufacturing in the region. The OEM company, DuPont’s long-time
distributor in South Korea, has created its own niche in the performance materials business. Among its solutions include reinforced polymers or electro-conductive polymers that are likewise suited to carbon fibre applications in the semiconductor industry; and for which, Seyang has co-development projects with Samsung Electronics and Hyundai Motor. In addition, Seyang’s liquid crystal polymer (LCP), the only LCP resin manufactured in South Korea, to date, is applicable for the deployment of speeds required for 5G wireless connectivity. Seyang will showcase its new products and solutions at Chinaplas held in May in Guangzhou.
Seyang’s liquid crystal polymer is suitable for applications including electrical/electronic parts such as connectors. It is also applicable for the deployment of speeds required for 5G wireless connectivity
Thailand: Asia’s strategic gateway opens door to opportunities Thailand is focusing on strengthening its industries with high potentials, as it secures its position among Asia’s strong economic contenders, says Angelica Buan in this report.
hailand, Southeast Asia’s second largest economy, has made great strides over the years, progressing from a low income to an upper income economy. The country has a strong industrial sector, and a well performing services sector, both representing 40% and 50% of GDP, respectively. According to the World Bank, in 2018, the Thai economy posted its highest growth in six years, at 4.1%, despite external challenges to its tourism and trade industries. And even with the decline in manufacturing/exports in the first three months of this year, due to the political fray surrounding the recent elections and lower consumer confidence, the Thai Chamber of Commerce (TCC) has advised that the country is poised to achieve a GDP growth of 3.5%. Building up a network to boost competitiveness A significant milestone in Thailand’s investments focus is the establishment of the Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC). Three provinces, Chachoengsao, Chonburi and Rayong, are spearheading the programme for the economic development of Thailand’s Eastern Seaboard. It is envisioned to become the country’s trade and investment artery as well as the centre for regional transportation and logistics to become more conducive to investments. Five promotional zones were designated under the EEC project. Firstly, the Eastern Airport City in U-Tapao International Airport to be turned into an aviation hub to accommodate the influx of passengers to as much as 60 million passengers/ year in the next 15 years. Second is the EECi (Eastern Economic Corridor of Innovation) in
Country Focus Wangchan Valley in Rayong, and the Space Inspirium area of the Sriracha district of Chonburi, which will be a R&D base for The EEC electronics design, projects kick biotechnology and off in the provinces of vocational training Chachoengsao, centres. Chonburi and Meanwhile, the Rayong EECd (Digital Park Thailand) in the Sriracha district of Rayong will focus on digital infrastructures in line with the establishment of the regional ASEAN Data Hub. Finally, the EEC comprises a Smart Park and the Hemaraj Eastern Seaboard 4 Industrial Estate, both of which will be in Rayong. For infrastructure development, EEC projects underway include the HighSpeed Rail Linked 3 Airport Project that links three airports, Map Ta Phut Port Phase 3, Aircraft MRO, U-tapao Airport expansion and Laem Cha Bang Phase 3. The project consists of the current 29-km Airport Rail Link route and the recently constructed 191 km route. The train will operate on the following types of tracks: a 181-km elevated track; a 2-km track; and an underground 8-km track. The proposed route will offer connections to five provinces including Bangkok, Samut Prakan, Chachoengsao, Chonburi, and Rayong; and will run along existing railways with a new design at the outbound connection of Suvarnabhumi International Airport and inbound connection of U-Tapao Airport. In a related development, Thailand has recently inaugurated a railway projected that will connect it to Cambodia. It is expected to cut travel times and boost trade with the ASEAN. Last year, it was reported that Cambodia re-opened the final stretch of a 370-km railway from its capital, Phnom Penh, to the Thai border. The construction of the link, amounting to US$13 million, is funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Boosting the automotive industry: production of EVs, a priority Thailand the regionâ€™s largest producer of vehicles (commercial and passenger vehicles), takes the lead, having produced 2.16 million units in 2018, up by 9% from the previous year. For 2018, full year vehicle sales in Thailand increased 19.2% year-on-year to 1 million units. However, the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) forecasts that vehicle production in Thailand is expected to decrease slightly to 2.15 million units in 2019. The automotive industry accounts for 5.8% of Thailandâ€™s GDP. Thailand is also the 13th largest automotive parts exporter and the sixth largest commercial vehicle manufacturer globally. The country, dubbed as the Detroit of Asia, remains a manufacturing haven for global automobile makers including Toyota, Ford, Honda, BMW, Mercedes and more, which have set up factories in Thailand. Recently, Japanese automotive maker Subaru opened an assembly plant in Bangkok to manufacture vehicles for the domestic and export markets. The 5-billion baht plant is owned by Tan Chong Subaru Automotive (Thailand) or TCSAT, a joint-venture between Tan Chong International Limited (TCIL) and Tan Chong Motor Image Thailand and Subaru, claims to be capable of producing up to 100,000 units/year. It is the third Subaru plant in the world (the first two are located in Japan and the US), and the first in Asia outside of Japan. Meanwhile, an important agenda is the manufacture of electric vehicles (EVs). A 2018 study by Frost & Sullivan and Nissan, covering Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and the Philippines, says though the
Country Focus Subaru opened a vehicle assembly plant in Bangkok
EV uptake remains comparatively low, consumers are aware of the di¬fferences in various EV technologies such as battery electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) and full hybrid. It also said EVs are gaining popularity among young individuals below the age of 40. Under its “Electric Vehicle Promotion Plan”, part of the Thailand Alternative Energy Development Plan 20122021, Thailand has progressed from having 60,000 hybrid passenger cars and 8,000 battery electric motorcycles in 2014 to 102,000 hybrid cars and 1,400 BEVs in 2018, according to the Land Transport Department. EV production is high up on the agenda of EEC, and is expected to bring windfall to industries engaged in battery, driving systems, electronic accessories, safety components, automotive and engine parts, to cite a few. The Board of Investments (BOI) of Thailand has been actively promoting EV production, targeting PHEVs. Recently, BOI approved Mitsubishi Motors (Thailand)’s 3.3-billion baht PHEV production project in Chonburi province. Packaging, a palatable growth sector The food processing industry, a key targeted industry of the EEC initiative, is vital for the country because it generates jobs, as well as solicits investments to other related industrial production sectors. Thailand, touted as the “Kitchen of the World” for drawing importance on its food and agriculture sectors, has one of Asia’s most advanced food processing segment, with more than 10,000 food-and-beverage processing factories. Its third largest sector, it accounts for over 20% of the country’s GDP. The increasing support for the food processing and agriculture industries bodes well for the packaging industry, another engine of growth for Thailand. The Thai packaging industry is expected to grow to The increasing support for Thailand's food processing and agriculture industries bodes well for its packaging industry
63.1 trillion units in 2020 from 51.3 trillion units in 2017, registering a CAGR of 4.2%, says Global Data Research. Packaging that offers greater functionality, such as on-thego, sustainable or personalised packs, are forecast to rake in higher demand in the longer term. Electrical/electronics sector The country’s electrical and electronics industry has thrived and expanded continuously for almost four decades, accounting for an export value of around 24% a year. The Electrical and Electronics Institute forecasts the country's shipments will grow by 3.26% to US$64.1 billion in 2019 as major destinations, like Japan, Southeast Asia and Europe, have turned their economies around. In terms of value, electronic parts are expected to grow by 3.55% in 2019, while home appliance shipments are projected to increase 2.97%. Shaping a digital economy with smart manufacturing As Industry Revolution 4.0 (4IR) sweeps across developed economies, the ASEAN is all systems go for technology disruptions. In the lead is Thailand, in terms of technological development, as evidenced by its high level of industrial growth. The country’s progression in its Thailand 4.0, its version of 4IR, exploits on industrial automation, Artificial Intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), and digitalisation. Stepping ahead in smart manufacturing, a main component of 4IR, Thailand has shown robust robot sales, in a bid to accelerate its smart manufacturing agenda. According to the World Robotics Industrial Robots report 2018 data, robot sales in Thailand increased by 28% to 3,400 units in 2017, after a slump in sales in recent years. Robot installations also rose by 30%. Meanwhile, robot density in 2018 in the automotive industry totalled 974 units. Robot density is defined as the number of multipurpose industrial robots in operation per 10,000 employee. Thailand has shown robust robot sales, in a bid to accelerate its smart manufacturing agenda
The International Federation of Robotics (IFR), in its data, cited that shipments of robots in 2018 totalled 4,000, increasing to 5,000 in 2019. By 2021, it is projected to climb 7,000 and thus, forecast to register a CAGR of 21% from 2019 to 2021. The above is but a fraction of Thailand’s strategic framework, the key to its economic sustainable growth for the long term.
Injection Moulding Asia Machinery News
Machinery at Chinaplas 2019 At the upcoming Chinaplas show in
portfolio for IT-networked and production-efficient plastic parts production ranges from digital assistance packages, predictive maintenance and remote service to the new customer portal and Arburg’s own MES, the ALS host computer system. As a central component of Industry 4.0, ALS enables online data exchange across production facilities and locations (horizontal integration) as well as with a PPC/ERP system (vertical integration). At Chinaplas, all machine exhibits will be networked via ALS. The new customer portal, which will be presented in Guangzhou for the first time in a Chinese version, provides a variety of services using a cloud-based solution. The central apps include the “Machine Centre”, which contains information and documents for each machine, the “Shop” for ordering spare parts and the “Service Centre”. In addition, visitors have the opportunity to find out more about the six digital Arburg assistance packages for starting, setting up, optimising, producing, monitoring and servicing Allrounder machines and experience the potential of augmented reality (AR) for service purposes at first hand by means of a practical example. In terms of industrial additive manufacturing, Arburg will show its Freeformer 200-3X. Arburg has also added the large Freeformer 300-3X to its portfolio. This threecomponent machine can additively produce complex functional components in hard/soft combinations, made from two plastic components plus support material. The new Freeformer also offers more space and higher temperatures in the build chamber and can be automated and integrated into networked production lines.
Guangzhou, to be held from 21-24 May 2019, machinery makers will be showing the latest in automated machinery for medical and
packaging applications; as well as digital processing.
Digitalisation at the forefront from Arburg German machinery maker Arburg will be presenting the digital future of plastics processing at its stand A41 in Hall 5.1, with several topics relevant to the subject of digitalisation to be presented: the new customer portal, the potential of augmented reality (AR) for service purposes, as well as digital assistance systems. “Digital transformation is a topic that we as industry leaders have been focusing on for years and one that we are currently defining with our ‘Road to Digitalisation’ campaign,” explained Zhao Tong, Managing Director of the Arburg organisation in China. “We show our customers how our innovative solutions for injection moulding, additive manufacturing and automation can help them stay on track for success as we join them on the road to the digital future of plastics processing. This allows them to fully meet all requirements in accordance with the state’s ‘Made in China 2025’ industrial development plan.” With its 30 years of know-how in IT-networked production, the company says it is advancing the digitalisation of its business processes and services. The
Complex LSR processing for watches and automotive lighting Arburg will also show the production of LSR/LSR wristwatches on a hydraulic two-component Allrounder 570S with a clamping force of 2,200 kN and size 400 and 70 injection units arranged in an L-configuration. The fully automatic machine will produce two bicolour wrist straps made from the LSR materials Silopren 2670 (hardness 70 Shore A) and 2630 (hardness 30 Shore A) in a cycle time of 70 seconds. The 2+2-cavity mould is made by Rico and the LSR dosing unit by 2KM. The new “CPP reader” camera system automatically detects whether the correct barrel has been loaded for each of the two LSR components. Assembly of the wristwatch takes place within the moulding cycle, by means of a linear Multilift V 15 robotic system. It removes the wrist straps and sets them down in a cooling station and then in an assembly station. Here, they are fitted with the watch housing and a ready-to-use clasp. Another multi-component application is exhibited by partner Mehow where a hydraulic two-component Allrounder 470S produces water cups from PC and LSR. Handling is performed by a six-axis robot.
Arburg’s new customer portal provides a variety of services via a cloud-based solution, with a “Shop” app for ordering spare parts as one of the features
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Injection Moulding Asia Machinery News time and mould opening time. On top of this, it allows for compact production cells since the mould mounting platens can be fully used up to their very edges. This means the high-volume lens mould fits on a small 120 tonne-machine. Engel says it has also equipped the e-victory with iQ weight control, from its inject 4.0 programme, for the manufacture of the LED lenses to ensure the required precision during injection throughout the entire process. The camera system integrated in the process checks the quality of the parts, while an Engel viper 40 linear robot is used for parts handling. The mould comes from ACH-Solution, while Engel is implementing together with AVR Tech Innovations, the augmented reality (AR) solution. Germany-based Wittmann Battenfeld will also demonstrate an LSR application for the automotive sector on its all-electric 1,600 kN-EcoPower series. The injection unit in open design allows easy integration of the LSR feeding and blending elements. A connector seal for the automotive industry will be produced from LSR supplied by Momentive, with a fully automatic 32-cavity mould equipped with an inspection system from Nexus and a Timeshot needle shutoff control for moulds with large numbers of cavities, which is unique on the market, says the firm. A gripper with a sensor system takes care of parts demoulding.
Arburg will show a turnkey system with a hydraulic two-component Allrounder 570S and a linear Multilift V 15 robotic system producing two ready-to-use LSR watches in 70 seconds
The automotive industry is one of the pioneers when it comes to exploiting optical silicones for lighting systems. In addition to this, LSR is also becoming increasingly important as a lens material for street and building lighting. Like the established thermoplastic lens materials PMMA and PC, silicone offers weight savings compared to glass and is superior to organic polymers in terms of thermal and chemical resistance. Highly transparent grades for optical applications have a lower yellowing index than thermoplastic lens materials; are resistant to environmental influences such as UV radiation and can be used over a wide temperature range from -40 to +200Â°C. In addition, they allow flexible design and in terms of geometry, there are almost no limits when processing LSR in injection moulding. Thus, Austrian machine maker Engel will be processing Dowsil MS-1002 Moldable Silicone by Dow Silicones, a material developed specifically for use on injection moulding machines. The curing speed has been optimised to obtain a smooth and very hard surface similar to thermoplastic. The high light transmission ensures a good luminous efficiency. In addition, the high thermal stability enables improved transparency. The surface, with its filigree structure, is moulded with reproducibility. The LED lenses leaving the production cell are ready for installation. The tie-bar-less machine offers a number of advantages for processing LSR, such as that the robot can reach the cavities directly from the side without having to circumvent any obstacles, reducing handling
Machinery for medical parts showcased Wittmann Group says the Asian market is an important one, since in China, the Austrian firm not only has a sales subsidiary but also a facility in Kunshan that produces robots and auxiliaries (temperature controllers, material loaders and granulators) for the Asian market.
Wittmann Battenfeld will demonstrate a medical part on its MicroPower 15/10
At Chinaplas, its subsidiary Wittmann Battenfeld will demonstrate on a MicroPower 15/10, the cleanroomprocessing of a 0.003 g-medical clamp manufactured from POM supplied by Ticona in a 5 second-cycle time, with a four-cavity mould from Microsystems UK. The parts are removed by a W8VS2 Wittmann robot, said to have been specially designed for the removal of small and micro parts,
With their filigree structure, the trend is towards LED lenses, says Engel. It will show processing on its e-victory machine
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Injection Moulding Asia Machinery News and passed on to a camera integrated in the production cell and in the machine’s control system for quality inspection. The parts are subsequently separated according to cavities and stacked in a stacking module. Arburg will show an automated 600 kN-Allrounder 370 E Golden Electric producing breathing masks for babies using a single-cavity mould from Mehow. The 2.98 g moulded parts made from PC are removed and set down by a Multilift Select linear robotic system in a 15-second cycle time. Multi-component moulding from FCS Taiwan’s FCS Group will show brand new multi-component, high-speed machinery for medical and packaging applications. Its new generation FA series is a newly released servo hydraulic machine. The specifications and design have been upgraded and optimised, with a 30% platen strength improvement, high-performance servo energy-saving oil pump for precision, stability and improved mould lifetime. The ergonomic design of the machine integrates not only electrical control but also FCS’s iMF 4.0 Intelligent ManuFactory.
KraussMaffei will showcase two models of its locally made allelectric machine
Made-in-China all-electric machine Meanwhile, Germany-based KraussMaffei will debut its locally produced PX Agile all-electric machine, manufactured at the company’s new Sanming location in Fujian Province. A special stock machine programme makes the delivery of standard machines ex works possible while machines with additional options will be available for delivery within four to six weeks, says KraussMaffei. Customers in China additionally benefit from a userfriendly human-machine interface specially tailored to the requirements of Chinese markets. Easy operation and intuitive programming ensure that the machines are accepted quickly, says the firm. The flexible sales options also allow for a free trial phase and short-term and long-term leasing plans with flexible payment plans, it adds. For a start, KraussMaffei will launch the PX Agile 80 and PX Agile 160 machines with clamping forces of 800 or 1,600 kN, respectively. Striking surface effects are also achievable on the PX Agile 80 in conjunction with inductive dynamic mould heating (DMH) technology provided by partner Roctool (HD Plastics). The key benefit is that additional film decoration or (secondary) painting becomes obsolete, simplifying things. Using an example of a TV set top box, KraussMaffei will demonstrate the design options of DMH. Different colour shading, holograms, gloss or matt effect, can be realised using a one-shot process without the need for additional post-mould processing. Both machines on show will be equipped with the new LRX Agile from KraussMaffei. The new linear robot series is also produced at the KraussMaffei plant in Sanming.
FCS will exhibit its latest updated multi-component FB-R machine
FCS says that with its more than 40 years of multicomponent experience, it has introduced the FB-R dualcolour servo power-saving machine. The 1,900-tonne machine has four sets of injection units and 18 types of multi-component configurations. By adopting a closed-loop servo valve, two series of FEA toggle systems and rotary table positioning, it allows for increased injection speed. At Chinaplas, it will demonstrate the production of infusion caps on a 24-cavity mould and cycle time of 30 seconds. As for the FB-T series, it adopts a servo motor for an increase in revolutions by 30%-50% and efficient cycle times. There is a reciprocating 180-degree rotary table, which can produce multi-component products, while the injection and clamp adopt linear potentiometer, for precision control of within 0.1 mm. The machine will be shown producing threecolour toothbrush handles. In the meantime, the HN-h/p series is characterised by precision, high speed, power-saving, stability and high efficiency, says FCS. The closed-loop machine boasts 50% increase in injection speed to 150%, according to FCS. The HN-280p, with in-mould labelling (IML), will be shown producing yoghurt cups in an eight-cavity mould and cycle time of 6 seconds.
One of the machines will exhibit inductive dynamic mould heating (DMH) technology that does away with additional film decoration or (secondary) painting
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Injection Moulding Asia Country Focus
South Korea: No stopping Asia’s master of innovations South Korea is leaving no stones unturned to
The sectors that are found to be more coalescing to a digital technology-based manufacturing setup are the automotive, petrochemicals, and information technology; while the steel, shipbuilding and machinery equipment sectors are following suit. Meanwhile, there is not a lack of companies that are taking interest in South Korea’s advanced manufacturing thrust, as viewed at the recent industry exhibition, Koplas 2019, which showcased a fete of technologies to demonstrate the readiness of the South Korean in smart manufacturing, a key component of i4.0. Organised by Korea E & Ex and the Korea Plastics Processing Machine Industry Cooperative (KPPMIC), Koplas had exhibitors from 27 countries.
further mature a technology-driven industry, says Angelica Buan in this review of the
recently concluded Koplas 2019 show, held 12-16 March in Seoul. The show spanned an area of 26,487 sq m with 4,300 booths occupied by 1,280 exhibitors. The total
number of visitors over the five days was 85,016, with 2,417 from overseas.
Tying up for further presence South Korea is among the world’s major bailiwick for automotive innovation, yet is on the verge of being outperformed by other vehicle producing countries such as India, China and Mexico, in terms of production and sales. Based on data from the Korean Automobile Manufacturers Association (KAMA), automotive production fell 2% to slightly over 4 million vehicles in 2018 from a year ago. Big automotive makers that have bases in South Korea are moving production elsewhere, like Hyundai Motors setting up in Mexico and India, and General Motors, which has opened a sales office in Incheon, sold its factory in Gunsan to Gyeongsan-based Myoungshin. Thus, to balance out the automotive industry’s lukewarm performance, South Korea is looking to other areas with high growth potentials for its i4.0-ready industries. In view of this, Italian auxiliary equipment company Piovan has started a partnership with local company Toba, to boost its presence in the country. “We want to increase sales, and at the moment Federico Ruzzon, Sales Director of Piovan (China), affirms that the are officialising a commercial partnership company’s partnership with South Korean Toba has bolstered presence with Toba, a key of Piovan in the country player in South Korea’s plastics industry,” said Federico Ruzzon, Sales Director of Piovan (China). Toba supplies factory
Charting Industry 4.0 South Korea has secured the top spot in innovation charts and has been cited the world’s second most innovative country after Sweden, according to the 2018 Bloomberg Innovation Index. This is not surprising as the world’s 15th largest economy is also the world’s top producer of mobile phones, semiconductors, displays, and vehicles loaded with the latest bells and whistles in connected mobility. As a strong contender in the advanced manufacturing arena, South Korea is actively adding on mileage to its Industry 4.0 (i4.0) blueprint to even up with its East Asian counterparts. The latter include Taiwan that is in a similar pursuit of forming a smart manufacturing framework; Vietnam, which is expanding the use of robotics on the manufacturing floors; China, which wields connected technology infrastructure in line with its One Belt and Road initiative and the Made in China 2025 manufacturing roadmap; and Japan, which has made a giant leap to what it calls Society 5.0, or the Super Smart Society that is epitomised by application of AI, big data, Internet of Things (IoT), and robotics. In the years to come, South Korea will be seeing its manufacturing industries become digitally driven. By 2022, it intends to build 30,000 smart factories and ten smart industrial zones. Obviously, adoption for i4.0 has the potential to further increase, based on an audit undertaken by the Bank of Korea in 2018. Of the 272 manufacturers taking part in the survey, more than half were of the opinion that the transformation is vital and thus are taking measures to adapt to the i4.0 concept. 4 M AY 2 0 1 9
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Injection Moulding Asia Country Focus automation, pneumatic conveying systems and smart factory systems, to name a few. Ruzzon explained how South Korea’s smart factory readiness matches the company’s offerings. “We are serving customers from Italy. Smart factory, being the key point both for Piovan and Toba, bridges the distance between our headquarters and our Korean customers,” he explained. Piovan’s machine system for supervision and control is Winfactory 4.0, a digital supervision software for productivity and quality.
Wimmer added: “South Korea is a high-priced country, and so to run factories more economically, implementation of i4.0 compliant machines is necessary.” True enough, this is the trajectory of the industry as it looks further ahead to the prospect of becoming the region’s paradigm for advanced manufacturing through Maag Systems Singapore’s pelletising technology is i4.0 persistent innovation compliant, according to Seah Poh and technology Siang, Sales Leader Asia development. Exhibitor Maag Systems Singapore, the Asian sales arm of Switzerland-headquartered gear pumps, pelletising and filtration systems manufacturer Maag, promoted a range of pelletisers that allow reusable waste from injection moulding to be recovered and recycled into a finished product. Seah Poh Siang, Sales Leader Asia, described the pelletising technology as i4.0 compliant, suited for South Korea’s packaging, profile and other industrial applications. He added, “The plus points of Maag’s pelletisers are the energy efficiency and compact design.”
Tuning into a no-waste concept One of the significant elements of the i4.0 concept is its support of the circular economy agenda, which is minimising waste and recovering value of end of life resources. South Korea, ranked fourth in UK consultancy Eunomia’s solid waste recyclers, is able to maintain high recycling rates. The only non-European nation in the top five ranking in 2018, it achieved a nearly 54% recycling rate. This is also in the face of China’s ban on solid wastes from other countries entering its borders. Having said this, it is expected that industries in South Korea will be benefitting from recycling technologies, not only to increase solid waste recycling rates but also to give emphasis to the value of circularity. This was also the opinion of Koplas exhibitor Austria-headquartered recycling machine maker Erema, which displayed the Regrind Pro technology. Fritz Josef Wimmer, Head of Sales (Asia, Oceania, CIS and UK), said that the new technology focuses on post-consumer plastics. “The application of this machine has not caught up in South Korea until now since post-consumer materials have to be produced by countries affected by the China waste ban,” Wimmer said. The RegrindPro processes PE, PP, ABS or PS plastics and other regrind types into pellets. Typical regrind sources are packaging, automotive Fritz Josef Wimmer, Head of Sales applications, waste (Asia, Oceania, CIS and UK) at electrical and electronic Erema, explained that application equipment, household, of recycling technologies has grown building/construction, in South Korea, on the heels of the China waste ban and more.
Niche for efficiency in plastic processing machines Coveting the energy efficiency and just-in-time manufacturing advantage to meet demand sans wastage, German machinery maker Dr Boy, along with its representative Scientific Chemical Machinery (SCM), displayed the vertical 100 kN Boy XSV machine overmoulding metal nail files; and 63 kN-Boy XXS shown producing bookmark clips. Both machines are equipped with 3D-printed mould inserts. In this way, injection moulded parts are produced, which have the same physical properties as if they were produced with conventional moulds. This is not possible with the additive component manufacturing on 3D-printers. By using printed mould inserts, plastic parts from almost all materials, even glass-fibre reinforced plastics, can be processed and cost-effectively moulded even in very small quantities. The printed mould inserts are said to be a more cost-effective alternative to traditional metal moulds for the use in prototype manufacturing and small batch production. 5
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Injection Moulding Asia Country Focus Market growth for companies Ruzzon of Piovan described the South Korean market as a matured, high-level market. “South Korea is an important market for us as there are a lot of opportunities where we can offer our quality, stability, reliability,” he furthered. Christian Sorz, Project Manager of Boy attested to the positive demand for plastic processing machines and solutions in the market, with the company seeing increasing sales. German compounder Kraiburg TPE is meeting the growing TPE demand in Asia Pacific for key markets with the set-up of Kraiburg Rubber (Korea), its fifth local representation in the region after Kuala Christian Sorz, Project Manager of Boy Lumpur, Bangalore, said that there is a positive demand Hong Kong and for plastic processing machines and solutions in the market Shanghai.
Exhibitor Wittmann Battenfeld Korea also disclosed increasing sales of its micromoulding machines in South Korea. The Gyeonggi-based subsidiary pegged about a 40% rise in domestic sales, according to Managing Director, Chong Geun Kim, who also did a presentation on LSR/micro LSR part injection moulding during the technical Wittmann Battenfeld Korea’s Managing Director, Chong seminar at Koplas. Geun Kim, recapped about the There is a robust increasing sales of the company’s demand for injection micromoulding machines in South moulding machinery Korea from the South Korean market, with the total market volume estimated at 2,000 machines/year with about 30% of this volume delivered directly to South Korea and the remaining 70% being required by companies for their facilities outside South Korea, concluded Wittmann Battenfeld.
The ultrathin wonders of printed electronics Products and brands are harnessing the
and packaging, sensor-enabled materials, batteries and more are now being equipped with printed electronics. While printed electronics are relatively at an early stage of development, the sector is projected to gain traction fast, driven by demand for thin, robust, and flexible substrates that provide secure and cost-effective and significant cost advantages from high growth in industries including the automotive and mobility, IoT (Internet of Things), healthcare, consumer electronics, printing & packaging, and building & construction.
enormous potentials that are packed within
the wafer-thin shell of the printed electronics
technology, says Angelica Buan in this report.
he effusion of technology advancements in consumer products has set off a criterion that thinner is better and less is more. This is the case in the deployment of printed electronics in products that have also evolved over time and based on consumer preferences. Printed electronics are thin, lightweight, and flexible technology that can be printed with conductive inks on large area substrates, such as plastics, paper, glass or textile. One benefit of printed electronics is that they can be produced at a low cost. Moreover, printed electronics enable consumer products to be more compact, more interactive, and more mobile, to cite a few advantages. This is a paradigm to future proofing technology-driven industries. Flexible screens, smart labels
Breakthrough application in 5G technology Boasting to be hundred times faster than current network speeds and higher reaction times, 5G or the fifth generation standard is heating up the devices technology arena. 5G, which requires use of unoccupied, higher-frequency bands (26 GHz and above), is predicted to see a surge of applications in mobile devices, machines and technologies; enabling not only person-to-person communication but also connected devices communication. An important component in advancing 5G technology is printed electronics. The Communications Research Centre (CRC), Canada’s advanced telecommunications research centre, is 6
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Injection Moulding Asia Electronics/electrical Industry collaborating with the National Research Council (NRC) of Canada, and human machine interface technologies manufacturer GGI Solutions to advance the use of engineered surfaces with printed electronics in nextgeneration mobile wireless communications. CRC and NRCC are both members of intelliFLEX, a notfor-profit industry alliance in Canada, aiming to accelerating the growth of the flexible and hybrid electronics sector of more than 300 organisations across the country. Researchers at the CRC are using engineered surfaces to control the propagation of electromagnetic signals in a wireless communications environment. One of the enabling fabrication technologies is printed electronics. It explained that by printing metals and dielectrics (an additive fabrication process), engineered surfaces can be incorporated in existing building materials such as wallpaper, or drywall, in a low-cost, high-volume, and readily commercialised manner.
Novares and Quad are working on more solutions with intuitive intelligent interfaces using 3D-shaped electronics for a vehicle prototype
provider, Novares, has recently acquired a minority stake in European printed flexible electronics specialist, Quad Industries, to develop new systems with intuitive intelligent interfaces for all passengers, and add to Novares’s solutions for cars. Novares’s investment is part of a development partnership forged between the two companies in May 2018 that are collaborating on advanced user experience projects within Novares’s open innovation lab, the Nova Car. Quad’s technology is already integrated in the Novares “Touch’N Play” concept, incorporated in the Novares demo car. Novares and Quad are working on even more solutions with intuitive intelligent interfaces using 3D-shaped electronics for Novares’s second vehicle prototype, which will be unveiled in Paris in June. Future co-developments include Quad’s technologies in proximity sensing, gesture control, vital signs monitoring or stretchable sensors.
CRC, NRC and GGI Solutions are collaborating to advance the use of engineered surfaces with printed electronics in next-generation mobile wireless communications
Packaging got smart-tagged The growth of the smart packaging market is propelling the development of printed electronics in the segment. The global smart packaging market is growing at a fast rate. In three years’ time, it is forecast to achieve a CAGR of almost 8% from 2014 to US$37.8 billion, according to Allied Market Research. Scoping into smart packaging, Bericap, Germany headquartered supplier of caps and closures, is partnering with California-headquartered near field communications (NFC) solutions provider Thinfilm Electronics to develop fully integrated digital authentication solutions for closures in over-the-counter pharmaceuticals and industrial applications. The collaboration will embed advanced chips into the closures to create dependable and cost-effective solutions for brand protection and authentication purposes. Thinfilm’s NFC OpenSense and SpeedTap products communicate wirelessly with NFC-enabled smartphones and can be applied to everyday objects. Thinfilm provides fully integrated services throughout the entire process incorporating NFC tags, integrating them onto products and delivering data and actionable insights via the CNECT cloud-based platform at scale.
Improving wireless coverage using these materials would be much cheaper than installing additional cell towers or repeaters. Eventually, this concept could be used in designing new buildings, or even in the building codes to plan for wireless coverage in a similar way as heating and cooling is today. Collaboration to step-up connected mobility Market researchers are of a similar mind that the printed electronics market is poised for billion dollar growth as it matures over time. Markets and Markets estimated the printed electronics market to double by 2023 to US$13.6 billion from US$6.8 billion in 2018, registering a CAGR of 14.9%. Printed electronics are gaining high traction worldwide owing to the rise in the application in IoT. In part, it is also driven by the synergistic efforts of companies to develop better versions of the technology. Printed electronics are suited in concept cars with connectivity capabilities. Novares Venture Capital Fund of the France-headquartered global plastics solutions 7 M AY 2 0 1 9
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Injection Moulding Asia Electronics/electrical Industry The companies’ combined technologies allow developers to seal electronics into packaging and cards via lamination to provide indefinite illumination without wires, batteries, charging ports or direct contact with a power source. The application is piloted in the packaging of Straub Brewing’s six-pack beer. A PPG Teslin label is affixed to the front of the six-pack packaging to illuminate it and draw attention to the Straub brand. A subsequent application is a smart ID card that authenticates a user based on proximity to an ID reader. The PPG Teslin substrate is a microporous synthetic paper with the ability to cushion printed electronic circuitry while able to withstand handling and abuse typically associated with credential and packaging applications, according to PPG. Meanwhile, PPG says its thick film conductive inks are formulated to meet a wide range of printed electronic circuitry applications, including printed radio-frequency identification (RFID) and mobile antennas, membrane switch and capacitive touch panels, flexible OPV solar panels, printed sensors and medical biosensors. In the healthcare space, Germany-based speciality pharmaceutical labelling solutions provider, Schreiner MediPharm, likewise has struck a collaboration deal with German packaging specialist Edelmann to develop a demo version smart medicine packaging solution with diverse digital features, including the BitSecure copy detection technology for product authentication. A closure seal with an integrated NFC chip (which can be read using a smart phone and a related app) and a void effect for tamper evidence also have been incorporated. The BitSecure copy detection technology is a printed, digital security feature based on a high-resolution, random pattern whose intricate details are not discernible by the naked eye, explained Schreiner MediPharm.
Bericap and Thinfilm are developing fully integrated digital authentication solutions for closures applications
Bericap cited two significant benefits it expects out of the partnership: security and marketing. Jörg Thiels, CEO of Bericap, said that smart and anti-counterfeiting packaging solutions are fast developing requirements and Thinfilm’s technology and software platform complement Bericap’s extensive assortment of closures (it produces over 84 billion/year plastic closures and dispensers). Kevin Barber, CEO of Thinfilm, concurs saying that developing product closure solutions will help stop the global proliferation of product counterfeiting, refill fraud, tampering and diversion. Elsewhere, US speciality paints and coatings manufacturer PPG Industries and US RF-based wireless power technologies provider Powercast Corporation have recently sealed an agreement to jointly develop ultra-thin and wirelessly powered printed electronics products. The advanced solutions combine PPG Teslin substrate, PPG conductive inks and Powercast’s Powerhavester receiver technology for delivering over-the-air wireless power. Powercast and PPG will introduce LED-based wireless illumination solutions for smart consumer packaging and smart identification (ID) cards, which enable enhanced security. With this technology, smart consumer packaging lights up to showcase products on a shelf. Smart ID cards also illuminate to permit or deny access to restricted areas or to verify user credentials.
Schreiner MediPharm and Edelmann are developing a demo version smart medicine packaging solution integrated with BitSecure copy detection technology for product authentication
Market lighting up for printed OLED IDTechEx Research projected that the printed, flexible and organic electronics market will cross US$31 billion in 2018. However, with the increasing demand for these novel electronics, their commercial growth could sky-rocket
PPG and Powercast are introducing LED-based wireless illumination solutions for smart consumer packaging and smart ID cards
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Injection Moulding Asia Electronics/electrical Industry sooner than predicted. Foldable and printed OLED (organic light-emitting diode), distinguishable from its predecessor for its ultra-thin, transparent and flexible characteristics, is becoming a thing in various applications, such as consumer goods, automotive and more, and continues to open up more new market opportunities. European research project PI-SCALE recently introduced a prototype for a light art object created by EMDE development of light GmbH with product designer Christoph Petersen. The Colorloop The PI-SCALE project, branded as Lyteus, prototype establishes a European-wide roll-to-roll flexible demonstrated OLED lighting pilot production line the application possibilities with flexible OLED. The PI-SCALE project, launched by the EU in 2016, and branded as Lyteus, establishes a European-wide roll-to-roll flexible OLED lighting pilot production line, with an aim to enable companies of all sizes to quickly and cost effectively test and scale up their flexible OLED lighting concepts. At its launch, Lyteus has served four customers, namely, Audi, Rehau, EMDE and Pilkington to develop flexible OLED lighting products in the automotive, aeronautics and designer luminaires sectors. Lyteus partners include Holst Centre/TNO, UK EMDE’s Colorloop demonstrated CPI, Fraunhofer FEP the application possibilities with Institue, VTT, BOM, flexible OLED DuPont Teijin Films, Coatema, FlexEnable, M-Solv, FE, and Amires. For Colorloop, EMDE worked with research partner VTT from Finland, which developed a battery-powered driver with programmable control. The transparent and flexible OLEDs come from Fraunhofer FEP in Dresden, Germany. Meanwhile, flexible OLEDs are also targeted for product packaging. Lyteus, exploring this possibility, developed a flexible OLED panel embedded in the paper label, which lights up to display the logo on a product bottle. The OLEDs can be printed to produce any shape or colour, and can be used to highlight specific product details, such as a drink’s flavour or colour, or to provide additional information.
The lighting may be activated in several ways, for example, when the package is touched or when the product is opened; or may react to temperature or sound. The OLED panels are incredibly thin, just 330 microns thick, making them ideal for embedding into paper labels. They are also very flexible, so can be easily bent for curved objects like a bottle or cup. Currently, production of the OLED labels is based on a sheet-to-sheet process. For mass manufacturing for labels, the process needs to be scaled up to be able to produce large numbers of labels consistently. Holst Centre, an independent R&D centre that develops technologies for wireless autonomous sensor technologies and flexible electronics, is developing a roll-to-roll pilot production process to address the challenges of producing OLED labels in large quantities. The Dutch company is further developing the technology for labels. For example, the current implementation still needs wires and a cell battery. These could be replaced in the future with flat, flexible batteries or even flexible wireless charging coils. And it may eventually be possible to integrate flexible OLED displays, providing even more possibilities for attracting and informing customers about products. Similarly, multinational beverage manufacturer Coca Cola Company is exploring into this direction. In a promotional campaign called #BeSanta, launched in December last year, OLED technology was applied to a limited edition batch of 330-ml glass bottles of the drink product, to make the Coca-Cola logo light up when touched. The technology came from Berlin-based OLED specialist, Inuru. Accomplishing the labels, Inuru worked with German labels and flexible packaging manufacturer, All4Labels, and used conventional inks and printing technology to produce pressure-sensitive paper labels bearing all the typography and colours of a Coke label. Georgi Blaskov, Senior Brand Manager Coca-Cola CEE, see that future developments to bring the cost down are encouraged to make broader commercial application of printed electronics technologies, such as the flexible OLED, particularly in promotional mainstream packaging activities. Meanwhile, All4Labels is optimistic about making this technology as cost efficient as possible. The Berlin company produces inks that allow the printing of thin OLEDs with standard industry printing equipment. It has, thus, the potential to scale the production of low cost label electronic devices to billions of units. Coca Cola used Inuru’s OLED technology on the labels of its limited edition bottles for the #BeSanta campaign
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Rubber Journal Asia Industry News • The Indo-Italian joint venture Marangoni GRP (MGPL) has introduced a new entrant into the commercial tyre retreading business with Ringtread franchise eXtramiles in Chennai, India. • German chemical distribution company Oqema Group has acquired Italian chemical firm Elettrochimica Valle Staffora (EVS). Its business line covers the full organic and inorganic product ranges in the industrial, food, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, water treatment, and rubber and resins segments, to complement Oqema’s product range. The 50-year old family-run EVS is based in Milan and has a warehouse storage area and neighbouring reserve plot of 50,000 sq m each. EVS’s annual turnover is reported to be EUR60 million. • Japanese rubber machinery maker Kobe Steel has taken full control of its Indian tyre/rubber machinery joint venture, L&T Kobelco Machinery (LTKM), which was a joint venture with 51% held by Indian firm Larsen & Toubro and the remaining 49% by Kobe Steel. LTKM manufactures rubber mixers and twin-screw roller head extruders. Kobe Steel and its Singaporean subsidiary, Kobelco Machinery Asia, together own the entirety of LTKM, with a name change to Kobelco Industrial Machinery India (KIMI). • Continental has opened its EUR250 million greenfield tyre plant in Rayong, Thailand. It will produce 4 million passenger and light truck premium tyres/year
for Thailand and the entirety of Asia Pacific by 2022. The plant is the seventh greenfield manufacturing facility since the first in 1998, and it expands Continental Tyre’s global production footprint to 20 plants in 17 countries in 2019. • China’s Shandong Linglong Tire has broken ground on its US$994 million greenfield tyre factory project in Zrenjanin, northern Serbia. The 4.24 million sq ft-factory will be built in three phases, with the final phase to be completed in 2025. The factory will later have 1,200 employees and will produce 13 million tyres/year. The Chinese company will operate the factory through its Serbian subsidiary Linglong International Europe. Linglong produces 13.6 million units/year: 12 million car tyres, 1.6 million truck/bus tyres, and 20,000 off-road tyres. • Hong-Kong headquartered Prinx Chengshan recently broke ground on a new plant in Chonburi, Thailand. The Chinese tyre maker’s first overseas production base is expected to be commissioned in mid-2020, with US$300 million to be invested on construction of the initial stage of the plant. It will produce million semi-steel radial tyres/year and 800,000 all-steel radial tyres/year. • Following a three-year factory expansion project worth USD$133 million, Sumitomo Rubber Industries (SRI) has started production of commercial truck and bus tyres in Fazenda, Brazil. The installation of new production equipment
will augment the production capacity from 500 to 1,000 truck/bus tyres/day by the end of 2020. The Fazenda Rio Grande plant was established in 2013 over 5 million sq ft, with a further 144,000 sq ft expansion to add capacity for truck tyres. • India’s Balkrishna Industries (BKT) has opened its new headquarters in Seregno, Italy. The European market represents 50% of BKT’s annual revenue, which surpassed US$900 million globally in 2018. It houses BKT Space, an information and technology centre for OTR tyres and is also equipped with an auditorium and training facilities suitable • Continental Tire the Americas is expanding its Sumter, US, plant to accommodate production of the ContiSeal puncturesealing and ContiSilent noise-absorbing passenger tyre technology lines. As Continental produces the ContiSeal and ContiSilent tyre lines at two plants in Europe, the US production will increase the supply of tyres on hand and simultaneously reduce the order-delivery turnaround time for customers across the region. The project will add 290,000 sq-ft of manufacturing space to Sumter’s current 2 million sq-ft. It is targeting the start of production for 2020, with capacity of 1 million tyres/ year at full production. • The Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and Toyota Motor Corporation’s international space exploration mission includes expanding the
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Rubber Journal Asia Industry News domain of human activity and developing intellectual property on space exploration. Bridgestone Corporation will be a part of this mission with JAXA and Toyota, and will researching the performance needs of tyres for use on manned, pressurised rovers for better contact with the surface of the moon. • German Pyrolyx has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with German tyre manufacturer Continental that details a five-year supply agreement for 10,000-15,000 tonnes/ year of recovered Carbon Black (rCB). The minimum five-year supply agreement requires the development of an additional Pyrolyx manufacturing facility in
Eastern Europe. The rCB will be first supplied from Pyrolyx’s existing plant in Germany and another plant in the US, due to be operational in June 2019. • Latin American tyre retreader Vipal Rubber’s Bulgarian distributor Basvulk has inaugurated a new training centre specifically to train customers, in the city of Kyustendil, Bulgaria. The Basvulk centre offers training opportunities on excellence and the correct application of materials during the repairing process; the trainings are performed with due attention by Basvulk, after the need arose to expand activities into a new, suitable space – previously
done through customised workshops with lectures and hands-on exercises. • The Tun Abdul Razak Research Centre (TARRC), the UK-based laboratory of Malaysian Rubber Board (MRB) has opened a new US$2.8 million Engineering Laboratory in Hertford, UK, with a research and testing resource for large seismic rubber bearings. The highlight includes a large, unique rubber component test machine that can test full-scale bearings under actual earthquake conditions. with dimensions up to 1,000 mm. The new machine is also able to test other large structural rubber-based bearings and large rubber products.
Rubber Journal Asia Gloves Industry
Malaysia: hand-in-glove with the rubber glove market Though competition is tight in the gloves
Malaysia remains the world’s leading supplier of medical gloves (examination and surgical gloves), supplying more than 50% of the global demand, according to the Malaysian Rubber Export Promotion Council (MREPC). Its data showed that in 2018, Malaysia exported RM16.2 billion worth of gloves and RM1.6 billion worth of surgical gloves. The Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association (MARGMA), an organisation that represents 90% of local glove manufacturers, has forecast that Malaysia will further move up to the global value chain. Its global market share of gloves is anticipated to rise to 68% from 2020. Yearly, the glove industry is anticipated to break in a 15% growth rate.
Malaysia remains the world’s leading supplier of medical gloves, supplying more than 50% of the global demand
“Dyed in the wool” strategies to maintain competitive edge A better business climate can further support the industry, according to MARGMA. In a string of efforts to foster the glove industry’s growth, the Selangorbased organisation has urged utilities firms to reduce their tariff rates as per the price roll in liquefied natural gas (LNG) and coal prices in the international market in the recent months. Addressing the country’s natural gas concessionaire, Gas Malaysia Bhd, and electric company, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Denis Low Jau Foo, MARGMA’s President, said that adjusting the LNG and electricity prices can help local rubber glove makers cope. The highly competitive business environment has come about as a result of rising costs due to higher wages, higher natural gas prices and higher electricity tariffs for businesses. MARGMA has also sought the cooperation of the Energy Commission in moderating energy costs to make the Malaysian rubber glove industry more competitive in the world market. This, Denis said, was to ensure that Malaysia continues to be the global leader in the supply of medical examination and surgical gloves to the world. This year, the organisation expects its members to export RM19.9 billion worth of gloves, about RM2 billion more from the previous year’s total. Earlier on, the Malaysian rubber glove industry called for an extension and expansion of the reinvestment allowance (RA), which it included in its 2019 budget proposal. The rubber glove industry, considered a matured industry, is no longer granted an RA. The increase in the world standard of healthcare and the ageing world population are driving the gloves demand, according to Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA) in its report. This is also spurring the glove industry, particularly the medical segment, to become more competitive.
industry, according to Malaysia’s industry players, nobody is backing down from meeting the rising global demand for
gloves, says Angelica Buan in this report.
he demand for rubber gloves is growing globally due to the advancement in technological applications and the emergence of various diseases. Global demand for rubber gloves is forecast to expand 3.9% a year between 2016 and 2020. Currently, rubber surgical gloves account for 21.8% of the global demand while other rubber gloves have a 78.2% share of the market, according to Global Research and Development Services (GRDS). Globally, Malaysia, along with Thailand, the US, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific has dominated the global rubber gloves market. A leading rubber glove producer, Malaysia has secured its spot in the world market, being home to four top glove players, including Top Glove, Hartalega, Kossan Rubber, and Supermax, and to date, is already exporting gloves to over 195 countries worldwide.
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Rubber Journal Asia Gloves Industry In the current state that the manufacturing sector is committing to the Industry 4.0 policy, MARGMA and MIDA have reasoned that the RA enables Malaysian glove manufacturers to expand and build modern and automated facilities, to counter rising labour costs and to increase production efficiency.
Top Glove is also expanding its operations to meet the growing glove demand globally. In progress is the expansion of several existing facilities, including, F32 (Phase 1 & 2 to commence operations by the second and the third quarter of 2019, respectively); F33, a new block to be operational by the second quarter of the year; refurbishment of F2B, and a new block, F5A, both of which are starting up by the fourth quarter. By 2020, Top Glove expects new facilities to start up: new facilities, F40 and F42, (1st phase) in Malaysia will be operational by the first and the fourth quarter, respectively; F41 in Vietnam and F8A in Thailand will be operational by the second and the third quarter. These are expected to boost the group’s total number of production lines by an additional 200 lines and production capacity by 20.4 billion gloves/ year. By the end of 2020, Top Glove will have a total of 848 production lines and a production capacity of 80.9 billion gloves/year. Not resting on its laurels, Top Glove, will soon diversify to manufacturing medical catheters, in addition to its condom brand launched last year. Meanwhile, the company is also intending to set up a factory in Turkey, which it said is the fourth largest importer of gloves along with the US, Japan and Brazil. The country gets 70% of its demand from Top Glove. Selangor-headquartered Kossan Rubber Industries may have started the year with marginal pressure as it shifted its product mix further towards nitrile with a nitrile-to-natural rubber split of 75:25 (70:30 previously). The pressure is said to be a result of increased competition in the area of nitrile as other rubber glove producers increase their nitrile glove capacity. Nonetheless, it boasts an uptrend in revenue. In 2018, it posted RM2.14 billion in revenues, up from RM1.96 billion the previous year.
Industry players expand, diversify amid business challenges Top glove makers are setting their sights on greater goals in the coming years. Shah Alam-headquartered Top Glove Corporation considers itself performing well beyond its targets. Starting as a 100-employee local business in 1991 with a single factory and one production line, the world’s largest gloves manufacturer has grown with 40 factories, 648 production lines and a capacity of 60.5 billion pieces of gloves/year. By 2020, the company aims to corner 30% of the global market and to ultimately become a Fortune Global 500 company by 2040, according to its Founder/Executive Chair, Tan Sri Dr Lim Wee Chai.
Top Glove reported a positive performance for the second quarter of 2019 amid a challenging and competitive business environment
The company reported a positive performance for the second quarter of 2019, “despite an increasingly challenging and competitive business environment,” Lim said. During the first quarter, Top Glove posted a sales revenue increase of 27.7% to RM2.42 billion, compared to the same period a year ago; and which at the half year mark, already represents 57.5% of the total sales revenue for that year. The second quarter of 2019 also noted a 21% increase to RM1.16 billion of sales compared to last year’s, topping the projected global demand of 10% with a volume growth of 16%.
Kossan has witnessed marginal pressure as it shifted its product mix further towards nitrile
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Rubber Journal Asia Gloves Industry The company is also anticipating expansion of capacities. Kossan’s Plant 18, which has the capacity to churn out 2.5 billion pieces of gloves is expected to be commissioned by the second quarter of 2019, while Plant 19, with a capacity of 3 billion pieces, is starting up in the last quarter of the year. Kossan’s total production capacity is expected to reach 32 billion pieces/year from the current 26.5 billion pieces. By 2020, Kossan’s integrated RM1.5 billion plant in Bidor, Perak, will start construction and is anticipated to be completed in eight years, following the acquisition of the RM82.4 million plot in March last year from the Perak State Development Corporation. Supermax, which currently exports to over 160 countries worldwide in the US, Europe, Middle East, Asia and the South Pacific, produces up to 24 billion pieces of gloves/year, and accounts for about 12% of the global demand for latex examination gloves.
It also launched its Aveo contact lens in Malaysia, which is now being exported to other countries. The company, through its subsidiary Supermax International, holds a majority stake in Malaysia’s local contact lens maker SuperVision Optimax. Aiming to be a leading glove company, Hartalega Malaysia is the world’s largest nitrile glove producer. It is also advancing its innovation leadership, in view of its new antimicrobial glove (AMG). Hartalega also pioneered the world’s first lightweight nitrile glove in 2005. The AMG was developed in collaboration with R&D company Chemical Intelligence UK and is expected to be launched this May and to account for 10% of Hartalega’s total export volume sales in the first year of its launch.
Hartalega has invested over RM14 million to upgrade its enterprise resource planning system as it complies with its Industry 4.0 agenda
Supermax produces up to 24 billion gloves/year, and is eyeing to increase capacity to 29 billion gloves/year by 2020
Managing Director Kuan Mun Leong affirmed the challenging business environment due to competition and increasing manufacturing costs. Nevertheless, the company is said to be pushing its expansion plans to raise its capacity. Currently, Hartalega is capable of manufacturing 33 billion gloves/year, and progressively expanding to 44.6 billion units by 2020. In the first nine months of 2019, the company posted revenue of RM2.14 billion. Meanwhile, it is reported to have invested over RM14 million to upgrade its enterprise resource planning system as it complies with its Industry 4.0 agenda. Thus, Malaysia’s glove manufacturers are expected to expand and build more automated facilities, to stay competitive in the global arena.
The company has 11 manufacturing plants based in Malaysia. Citing a 10.2% growth due to the commissioning of new capacity in the second quarter of 2018, further revenue growth of between 3% to 5% of 1.35 billion gloves is anticipated from the rebuilt plant in Perak, which was only fully operational by end-September 2018. Supermax eyes an overall capacity target of 29 billion pieces/year in mid-2020 from the current 24 billion pieces. The company, which also diversified into the contact lens business, expects the venture to break even by 2022. Supermax shipped the first batch of contact lenses to Japan last year after its much awaited procurement of licence in the country.
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