Recycling - Bigger Pelletizing Extruders in High Demand

2022-06-09 | Industrial Trends | By Jack Lin |

Higher-capacity recycling equipment is required.

With the great importance of recycled-based products for both rigid and flexible packaging, the global demand for plastic recycling is expanding. Recyclers are now purchasing much plastic equipment at once, as well as the bigger pelletizing extruders.

The 800-1,000 kg/hour plastic granulator machine has already become the standard machine for post-consumer and even some post-industrial recyclers.

This new trend is more evident when two post-consumer recyclers - one located in Japan (Kanagawa) and the other one in Mexico City, both placed an order of four 800-1,000 kg/hour machines all at the same time to be able to fulfill the increasing recycling demand of washed PE film, HDPE bottles, and PP woven bags.

In the same period, several recyclers in Australia, India, Colombia, Saudi Arabia, UAE and the US have also repeated their orders with multiple (at least 2) higher-capacity machines from POLYSTAR.

Cutter-compactor increases the output of large plastic recycling lines.

There is a clear advantage of having a built-in cutter-compactor for larger-sized recycling extruders. As the result, the Repro-Flex plastic recycling machine has become the most popular model among plastic recyclers due to its high level of efficiency and stability in recycling both soft and hard plastic scraps in a variety of forms.

Cutter-compactor helps reduce moisture level of the plastic waste.

When processing post-consumer materials, the cutter-compactor reduces the moisture level of the material coming from the washing lines such as washed flakes (from film and woven bags) as well as regrind waste from milk and shampoo bottles. At the same time, it stabilizes the material feeding into the extrusion pelletizing line to ensure consistent production output and better pellets quality.

Cutter-compactor for lager-sized recycling machine
( Cutter-compactor for lager-sized recycling machine )

Feeding consistency is key for big recycling extruders

Feeding consistency is especially important to achieve and maintain higher production output in larger-sized recycling extruders. This is the case for processing both post-consumer and post-industrial waste.

Belt conveyor help feeding in materials.
( PP flakes fed in by belt conveyor )

For soft plastics such as flexible packaging, industrial film and washed flakes, the cutter-compactor, through natural heat and friction generated from the rotation, can quickly compact and densify the light-weighted material into a more solid form to be fed into the extruder at a constant rate.

Bottle flakes recycled by plastic recycling machine.
( Pre-crush PP milk bottle )

When recycling rigid plastics such as PE bottle flakes from milk and shampoo bottles or regrind from injection products, the cutter-compactor functions to regulate the feeding speed of the material and prevents over-feeding to the extruder. It also works well with hot, rigid materials coming from the squeezer dryer, as the constantly-rotating compactor further prevents the material from sticking to each other and bridging. In addition, the pre-conditioning process inside the compactor softens the rigid material, which reduces the shearing force and therefore minimizes the wearing on the extruder screw and prolongs its lifespan.

( Squeezer dryer )

Two-stage pelletizing machines for post-consumer recycling

The two-stage (mother-baby) recycling extruder has gained popularity in recent years amongst post-consumer recyclers, as many have begun to see the advantage of having extra degassing and additional filtrations during the recycling process.

Two-stage plastic recycling line.

Recyclers have the option of adding a second extruder to the Repro-Flex model. Also having a cutter compactor built-in and operating with the same working principles, the two-stage model Repro-Flex Plus has a total of three degassing zones and two filtration steps throughout the entire recycling process.

Two-stage plastic recycling line.

This is particularly effective for processing heavily printed, laminated, multi-layered film waste and washed materials. The second stage process ensures that the materials are thoroughly degassed and filtered to improve the quality of the recycled pellets and as a result, increase the reusability back to the production lines.

Learn more

Contact Us
Leave this field empty

About the Author
Jack Lin

Regional sales manager for Latin America

Jack has visited and spoken to hundreds of POLYSTAR machine users around the world over the last 10 years. Having collected practical information on customer feedback and user experiences, he enjoys sharing the advantages and disadvantages of using different types of machines with others, especially coming from the customers' perspectives.

You can find Jack on LinkedIn.