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Extrusion 5-2021

14.07.2021

Extrusion 5-2021

MicroAir I Optimized

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Retrofit of high performance air ring technology from W&H

Retrofit of high performance air ring technology from W&H

Сase studies
21 gbe retrofit gaviplas ring 854 1139 r 4 3 res 2278x1708

Gaviplas was looking to increase the capacity of the existing OPTIMEX blown film line while maintaining the quality level without the need to add more floorspace. Being aware of all new developments in the air ring technology, W&H took this challenge and started the project.

Creating a plan

At first the performance data of the pretty recently installed 3-layer OPTIMEX, that has served Gaviplas since end of 2018, was collected and analyzed. This machine originally equipped with a Dual Lip air ring was running at and above the guaranteed output with the bubble stability being the main limiting factor. The extruders and the die head appeared to have noticeable spare capacity, so using a new and more powerful air ring technology would allow to further increase the performance. Analyzing the recipes and the performance data of the main products, a forecast of at least +10% output increase was given and this was interesting enough for Gaviplas to give this project a GO!

 Time to prove the performance

Once delivered, exchanging the relevant air ring parts was done in single hours and the line got restarted without getting cold. Instead of having the MULTICOOL-Dual-Lip air ring resting on top of the die head, the modified MULTICOOL air ring is now operated in an elevated position. Gaviplas also included the training that was offered by the W&H service team to ensure to get the best possible result from this installation and to have every operator familiar with the new technology. Immediately after the bubble went up, the increase in bubble stability became obvious. Under the guidance of the W&H technician the new configuration was tweaked for maximum output right away. The most difficult product (a very high gauge film from soft material) reached the promised +10% output increase, however, most of the products were running with up to +20% higher output. What a success!

 The better is the enemy of the good …

21 gbe retrofit gaviplas 1279 925 r 4 3 res 2278x1708

… could be the resume of this retrofit. The continuous development of W&H´s R&D team creates opportunities like this, even though the candidate line to be upgraded was put into service only 2 years ago. The team at Gaviplas was really pleased with this new addition of W&H technology. Retrofitting such new air ring technology to older lines will allow for even higher output increase numbers. Of course, all other relevant components like the extruders and the die head etc. need to have sufficient spare capacity available to follow the increase in bubble stability provided by the air ring retrofit. This was checked beforehand and so this retrofit was done with minimum risk and leaves a more than satisfied customer smiling ear to ear.

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