A thermoforming sheet line of a local manufacturer would have cost less than half the price. Nevertheless, DAY YOUNG, a subsidiary of the leading Taiwanese PET producer Wen Ho, opted for a Reifenhäuser line manufactured in Germany – mainly for economic reasons.
„To be successful on international markets, our production had to become more economical and sustainable.“
At its plant in Dacun Township in western Taiwan, DAY YOUNG produces disposable cups and packaging for take-away food in all sorts of variations. These include paper-based products as well as cups, lids, trays and containers made from A-PET films. For the production of A-PET films, DAY YOUNG had already been using four thermoforming sheet lines from Taiwanese suppliers when the latest expansion of the production capacities was due. Sustainability was a high priority when selecting the new technology: “Sustainable production is important to us. It is part of our corporate culture,” emphasizes DAY YOUNG’s General Manager Jacky Lee.
Sustainable production is important to us. It is part of our corporate culture.
The increased sensitivity of consumers and corresponding changes in the market brought the topic even more into focus than before. In concrete terms, this meant that the energy efficiency of the line as well as the best possible consistent film quality to avoid scrap and the associated downtimes in downstream production had a high priority.
Twin screw technology
MIREX-MT-V polishing stack
The Taiwanese sales partner of Reifenhäuser Cast Sheet Coating, James Chan of GSR Far East, had a suitable answer for these requirements: The Reifenhäuser thermoforming sheet line equiped with a MIREX MT-V polishing stack and twin-screw extruders. This line allows for direct extrusion. The Reitruder twin-screw technology in combination with efficient vacuum units and venting system processes up to 100 percent PET flakes directly. Energy- and time-consuming predrying and crystallization of the flakes are not necessary. The crystallization process alone is reflected in the energy costs for the production of A-PET films with simple extruders at 150 watts per kilogram of raw material. The throughput of the line is up to 1,100 kg/h PET or up to 900 kg/h PLA with net film widths between 710 and 860 mm. A simple calculation showed: With the capacity utilisation planned for the new line, DAY YOUNG saves around two million euros in energy costs within ten years.
ADVANTAGES FOR DAY YOUNG
Less scrap, reduced energy costs, and a new major order
“On the one hand, the high energy efficiency of the line goes perfectly with our commitment to sustainable production. On the other hand, the Reifenhäuser line increases the competitiveness of our plant,” explains DAY YOUNG’s General Manager Jacky Lee. Another advantage of the Reitruder twin-screw extruder is the processing of high proportions of additives and fillers. Additives and fillers are continuously added to the melt instead of finished compounds.
This results in an extremely homogeneous melt and a PET fi lm with outstanding properties. The A-PET fi lm produced by the Reifenhäuser line is, among other things, particularly tear resistant so that films can be produced thinner and considerably less scrap is produced in the next production step when thermoforming the cups, trays and containers. In addition, the use of additives and fillers instead of finished compounds reduces raw material costs by up to 30 percent.
Due to the outstanding PET quality, DAY YOUNG received another major order shortly after the commissioning of the Reifenhäuser line.
After the approval, Reifenhäuser has supported us intensively far beyond the contractual agreement – until our end products had exactly the properties we wanted after the thermoforming process. That’s not to be taken for granted and we appreciate it very much.
The training courses were very practical. In addition, the line has user interfaces in Chinese. This contributed to the fact that the employees handled the line with confi dence from the very beginning.
DAY YOUNG is also well prepared for future changes in the market with the MIREX MT-V polishing stack: DAY YOUNG already produces a wider range of fi lm thicknesses than before the commissioning of the new line. The A-PET films produced by DAY YOUNG are between 0.25 and 2.2 millimeters thick. Therefore, the technical possibilities of the line, which can achieve fi lm thicknesses of less than 120 μm with PET, are far from exhausted. If the current trend towards increasingly “green” disposable cups and packaging continues, DAY YOUNG can quickly and easily retrofit the line ifnecessary and then use it to produce biodegradable PLA films.
REIFENHÄUSER SOLUTIONS FOR FLAT FILMS