Showcasing higher output and greater flexibility

KHS presents the new-generation InnoPET Plasmax.

Plasmax, the pioneering coating technology from KHS, continues on its successful course: the new machine generation is convincing with its higher outputs, even better quality, greater flexibility and improved efficiency.

FreshSafe-PET by KHS

The only plastic bottle to date to combine highly effective product protection with 100% recyclability by material type is manufactured using a revolutionary coating technology that KHS launched to market around 20 years ago. Much persuasion was needed before the beverage industry finally jumped on this bandwagon in its increasing move towards sustainability and requirement for circular packaging. The effort was worth it: in the meantime, a number of national and international bottlers now rely on this technology, prompting the systems provider to increase its capacities at KHS’ Hamburg production site to meet the growing demand.

This success story is rooted in the method of coating the insides of PET bottles with a wafer-thin layer of chemically pure glass that protects the content against oxygen pickup and carbon dioxide loss. This both retains the flavour and extends the shelf life – similar to a glass bottle yet with the lower weight and greater robustness of a plastic container.

Food safety established

The concept of barrier technology isn’t new. However, the competition uses blended or multilayer materials which make later bottle-to-bottle recycling to produce pure PET recyclate difficult to impossible. The composite materials can barely be separated from one another and form a jumble of secondary raw materials and chemical compounds. KHS’ FreshSafe PET coating system is different: here, the interior coating can be completely washed off during the recycling process, thus permitting full bottle-to-bottle reuse.

This has been confirmed by both the EPBP (European PET Bottle Platform) and North America’s APR (Association of Plastic Recyclers). The container’s suitability for use with foods has also been officially established by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and most recently by safety certification issued by the Chinese National Health Commission, among other institutions.

Over the years KHS has continuously improved the new technology and now taken it to the next level with its current further development. The two key objectives were to increase capacity on the one hand and boost efficiency on the other.

Higher availability and lower maintenance costs

Alternative capacity ranges

Thanks to the further developed generation of machines that replaces the previous 20Q and 20L series, PET bottles can be coated at an output of up to 48,000 an hour on the InnoPET Plasmax 80ES variant. The very first latest-generation Plasmax machine is installed at the VILSA mineral water bottling plant in Germany.

The higher capacity is the result of improvements to the process realised by the KHS experts. On the FreshSafe PET TriBlock, for instance, the infeed and discharge for the coating machine have now been placed at the same height as those on the stretch blow moulder and filler. This means that the lifting wheel that formerly had to transport the containers 30 centimeters up to the coating module is no longer required. Bottle handling has also been simplified and made even more robust – all in preparation for the even higher speeds forecast. By moving up into the higher capacity ranges KHS wants to reach out to the big bottlers of carbonated soft drinks in particular who need to protect their beverages against carbon dioxide loss in smaller bottles especially. After all, the smaller the container volume, the larger the surface area in relation to this. Accordingly, the risk increases of carbon dioxide escaping or oxygen being picked up through the plastic bottle wall.

KHS

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