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A contract signing ceremony was held at CHINAPLAS 2019 yesterday between Guolong Recyclable Resources Group and five renowned European suppliers of plastics recycling technology, including Sorema from Italy, Erema and SML from Austria, as well as Kiefel and Tomra from Germany. The total value of the equipment purchased exceeded 30 million euros.
A contract signing ceremony was held at CHINAPLAS 2019 yesterday between Guolong Recyclable Resources Group and five renowned European suppliers of plastics recycling technology, including Sorema from Italy, Erema and SML from Austria, as well as Kiefel and Tomra from Germany. The total value of the equipment purchased exceeded 30 million euros.

Plastics are gaining wider applications in different sectors, but only 9% of the world's plastics ever produced have been collected for recycling. Circular economy, as a megatrend of the plastics industry, is therefore under the spotlight at CHINAPLAS 2019.

Bio-based the buzzword of the plastics industry

More innovative materials have been developed with improved properties and new functionalities, driving the positive trend for the demand and application of bioplastics. In the “Bioplastics Zone” of CHINAPLAS 2019, a wide spectrum of latest biodegradable and bio-based plastics is offered to the visitors.

NatureWorks LLC, along with its partners, showcases how Ingeo can be tailored to enhance performance attributes critical to different application performances. For example, a new generation of tea and coffee bags made of Ingeo PLA-based biopolymer is displayed at its booth, demonstrating how packaging can be designed to enhance beverage taste and aroma while offering the compostability.

Meanwhile, a groundbreaking refrigerator liner also shows how Ingeo’s barrier properties can be leveraged to increase the energy efficiency of refrigerators by 7-15%.

Following the megatrend of circular economy, China has been adopting sustainable economic and social development strategies. In view of this, more Chinese material suppliers are focusing on developing recyclable, biodegradable and bio-based materials.

Hubei Guanghe Biotechnology Co., Ltd. is a major player in an environmental protection campaign of Alibaba Group. It displays a fully biodegradable material, GH7-1-360, and a bio-based material with a biogenic carbon content of almost 20%, JH330-D16A, which were developed in collaboration with the Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

The materials, designed for courier bags and bubble courier bags, have passed the European DIN CERTCO’s certification for fully biodegradable and bio-based products, according to the Chinese exhibitor.

The bio-based and compostable material of another Chinese enterprise, Suzhou Hanfeng New Material Co., Ltd., has changed the situation of traditional plastics being difficult to degrade and combustion producing harmful gases.

As introduced, with the technology for blending PLA and PBAT, customers’ various requirements for the physical properties of products and cost control can be satisfied, and the softness and environmental friendliness of products will be enhanced. The material can be used to manufacture green courier bags, disposable lunch boxes, bowls, cups, supermarket shopping bags, bags on a roll, flat-top bags and so on.

In addition, buyers can also source high-performance and recyclable materials, such as rPET, LDPE, and PP, for a wide range of applications in the “Recycled Plastics Zone”. The zone gathers leading exhibitors from China, Japan, Egypt, Latvia, etc. and makes its debut at CHINAPLAS this year.

Among the exhibitors on stage in the zone, KINGFA is a world-leading new material enterprise from China. The company has already produced more than 1 million tons of environmentally-friendly high-performance recycled plastics, and has established long-term partnerships with renowned brands in China and abroad. Its high-performance recycled plastics business unit owns the brand RecoOne.

Nobel recycling technologies on stage

Utilizing plastic waste through effective recycling is key to building a circular economy.As the plastics industry strives to optimize the processes for closing the recycling loop, the “Recycling Technology Zone” of CHINAPLAS is upgraded with a stronger lineup this year. Solutions for the whole recycling production chain are introduced, including sorting, granulating, washing, drying and pelletizing. Renowned exhibitors include TORMA, Buhler Sortex, Sesotec, Pierret, etc. are on show.

The new INNOSORT FLAKE sorter, equipped with TOMRA’s field proven NIR technology and the patented FLYING BEAM technology, is capable of detect material and color at the same time for an optimal sorting performance.

In PET recycling plants, the new sorter can help to remove impurities such as PVC, PP, PE, PA and POM from PET flakes, and ensure high purity of end product and high processing capacity.

Traditionally, the biggest challenge in PET flake sorting is to remove impurities smaller than 4mm, but with the high resolution and improved sorting algorithm, INNOSORT FLAKE can address the challenge effectively, and help to deliver PET flakes with improved quality for more diversified utilization, upgrading business for plastics recycling industry.

The SORTEX range of optical sorters from Buhler Sortex focuses on precision sorting, maximizing capacity, purity and yield, and delivering a consistent performance. It meets individual requirements and is suitable for small, medium and large-scale processing.

The optical sorters are able to sort a variety of plastics, including PET flakes, HDPE flakes, uPVC window regrind, WEEE/ELV residue, PVB, PP, ABS, PS and plastic pellets, as well as color grouping to further maximize product value.

Sesotec Shanghai Co. Ltd is one of the leading manufacturers of inspection, separation and sorting systems. When compared with conventional belt sorting systems, its VARISORT COMPACT is characterized by compact design and universal use in the recycling sector.

The material infeed is effective by using specially adapted vibratory feeders and chutes to guarantee homogeneous material distribution over the full width of a fast running conveyor belt. The combination of an inclined chute and a high speed conveyor eliminates problems due to the weight, shape and abrasive characteristics of the materials.

A wealth of cutting-edge solutions for the packaging sector

The packaging sector is facing increasingly higher user requirements and strong call for sustainability. CHINAPLAS 2019 has a large display of innovative packaging solutions featuring live machine demonstrations as well as exhibits of innovative materials and green technologies.

For example, ILLIG’s new IC-RDM 73K thermoformer produces drinking cups using a 32-up mold, at a speed of 50 cycles per minute. The forming area of this new machine is enlarged by 23%. Subject to applications, all improvements together contribute to an up to 25% increased production.

Compared to traditional pneumatic/hydraulic extrusion blow molding machines, the EB70UE full electric extrusion blow molding machine to be showcased by Powerjet Plastic Machinery Co., Ltd. has a rotary speed that is one-third higher and can save about 70% energy. The solution is mainly applicable to the manufacturing of packaging and containers for food and pharmaceutical products.

At the fairgrounds, SACMI presents its continuous compression molding (CCM) technology. Also on show is the innovative SACMI compression blow forming (CBF) container manufacturing solution plus a wide range of systems for total quality control at every stage along the line.

SWITEK Technology Automation Co., Ltd. specializes in the design and automation application of robots for injection molding automation. The automation solution on stage at the show is an IML spoon caps automation system, which includes the IML unit, CCD inspection unit, spoon assembly unit and auto-sorting and carton packing unit. The system helps IML spoon caps producers to downsizing for efficiency.

Innovative material and chemical solutions also boost the developments of the packaging sector, satisfying the higher requirements from consumers.

Milliken’s Millad NX 8000 PP clarifying agent is one of these solutions. The agent allows products with higher thickness to be as crystal clear as glass or amorphous polymer materials. It can replace the expensive transparent materials with limited functionalities and improve the aesthetics of current polypropylene materials.

The highlight of SK Global Chemical’s showcase is the PRIMACOR. It is random ethylene acrylic acid (EAA) copolymer produced by free radical copolymerization of ethylene and acrylic acid. It offers excellent adhesion to packaging substrates like foil, paper, polyolefins, and exceptional resistance to most oils, greases, acids, and salts.

Current changes in the packaging industry favor the increased use of thermoplastic elastomers (TPE). Epseal TPE products of HEXPOL TPE are custom-made liner sealing compounds for the food and beverage industry. They are PVC free and conform to FDA and EU regulations.

Advanced film technologies for higher efficiency and quality

Plastic films are gaining more popularity in various end user industries. To meet the increasing market demand coupled with higher application requirements, film producers are looking for advanced processing technologies and equipment.

In the area of film manufacturing, Windmöller & Hölscher (W&H) showcases its machine range for applications with increasing requirements such as flexible packaging, breathable diaper film, and more.

The focus of the German-based company is also on the manufacture of surface protection films, FFS films and barrier films with up to 11 layers for blown film applications. Its cast film line FILMEX has application ranges from nanolayer stretch films with up to 55 layers to barrier, CPE and CPP applications.

GOEBEL IMS presents its comprehensive portfolio of high-performance slitter rewinders for film processing and converting at its booth. The machines cover the complete range of web widths from 1,800 to 12,000 mm.

One of the highlights is the primary slitter rewinder INTERSLIT BSF, which is specifically designed to process hypersensitive materials such as battery separator film based on wet-processed BOPE.

The especially compact station rewinder concept with a short web path from unwind to rewind keeps the web on track and allows lowest web tension ranges. To achieve maximum efficiency, it can convert web widths of up to 6,000 mm while unwind and rewind diameter as well as speed are adjusted according to customers’ needs.

As for materials, Borouge’s flagship product Anteo offers exceptional performance for demanding film applications. With its outstanding sealing performance, Anteo greatly improves the productivity of packaging lines and reduces the proportion of packaging leakage and breakage.

Aneto’s versatility and a broad range of solutions provide greater flexibility in package design and can be used widely in various applications in food and beverages, personal care and hygiene, according to Borouge.

Plastics the material of choice for E&E applications

Many exhibitors at CHINAPLAS 2019 aim at introducing their state-of-the-art materials and equipment for the electrical & electronics (E&E) applications.

Plastics are expected to play a crucial role in the era for 5G, and therefore Seyang Polymer showcases SEYANG LCP, a material for 5G communication components. The material achieves low/high dielectric property ratings, LDS/MID grades for 5G antennas, and excellent extrusion grades for liquid crystal polymer (LCP) films.

At the same time, Shanghai Afaith Trading Co., Ltd. also introduces a polycarbonate-based material with a high dielectric constant, which can be widely used in small antennas and 5G communication applications.

Japan’s Teijin Ltd. has developed a thermoplastic carbon fiber prepreg by combining their carbon fiber with thermoplastic resins like PC, PP and polyethersulfone (PES). It offers a good appearance at lower overall cost, and can be used in E&E applications.

Compared to traditional metal and thermoplastic carbon fiber prepregs, the product is flame retardant, impact resistant, easy to shape, storable at room temperature, and suitable for large-scale mass production with short production cycle times.

Arburg showcases a complex turnkey system, an innovative and automated technology for manufacturing hydraulic, two-component wristwatches. Its Allrounder 570 S injection press produces bicolor LSR wrist straps, the MULTILIFT V robotic system removes the straps and set them down into a cooling station, where they are fitted with the housing and a clasp. The entire process takes only 70 seconds.

Other activities not to be missed
Audiences at yesterday’s Design Forum listened attentively to the speaker on the topic of sustainable product design.
CHINAPLAS 2019 is moving into the third day. In addition to the ongoing “Design Forum”, “Medical Plastics Forum” and “Tech Talk”, the organizer will hold various Application Industries Technology Seminars today, including the “Innovative Development of Packaging Materials under the New Consumption Trend”, “New Building Materials Technology Seminar 2019”, “Automobile and Rail Transit Lightweight Materials and Application Technology Seminar” and more.

Topics related to digital communications in the plastic industry, lithium battery technology will be covered in other seminars to be held tomorrow.

Last but not least, visitors can have the chance to receive amazing gifts on the last day of the show (May 24), such as air purifier, Bluetooth sports bracelet, power bank, and stylish USB. Redemptions will be limited and first-come-first-served while stocks last (Hall 2.2 S69; Hall 9.3 S59).

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