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AG Film recycling line installed in Portugal
2015-07-13
In recent years, Polystar has successfully teamed-up with different washing line manufacturers from Germany, Italy, Taiwan, Turkey and China in numerous turnkey recycling projects, in which Polystar’s recycling pelletizing lines are working together with a washing line made by another machine manufacturer.

In June 2015, Polystar, in cooperation with a German washing line manufacturer, has mounted a complete plastic recycling and pelletizing system for the film recycler in Portugal. The Lisbon-based film recycler has the same set up (washing line + Polystar pelletizing line) in its UK branch located in Manchester, which has been in operation since 2013.

With the combination of the two recycling systems, the producer is now able to recycle washed agricultural film flakes into high quality pellets. The Polystar recycling machine features an integration of a cutter compactor that provides further drying, cutting, densifying, dosing (with an additive feeder), filtering and dual degassing in one single step.

The 900kg/hr Polystar has replaced two Italian-made pelletizing lines that the company formerly owned. The previous recycling lines, with a hopper and force-feeding design, were processing mainly washed and dried rigid regrind from injection waste, producing about 300~ 400kg/hr each. According to the owner, the previous system was suitable for rigid regrind but not effective for film waste. “We had no problem with the hard plastic, but we were constantly facing problems with the washed film flakes because it’s so light in weight and still contained some moisture even after the drying process,” said Mr. Gervais de Matas. “The force feeding mechanism just couldn’t give us a stable output for film processing.”

“Besides saving labor cost, the cutter-compactor system from Polystar is definitely giving us an advantage for a more constant output and better quality pellets,” said the owner, “mainly because the it can help to further reduce the moisture level of the film flakes coming from the washing line. It is beneficial for both processing washed film flakes and rigid regrind.

In addition to washed AG film, the recycler is also using the Polystar line to process post-industrial film directly without pre-washing, including printed BOPP film, LDPE post-industrial and LLDPE stretch film. Through the quick densifying and compacting process, the machine can process up to 1100kg per hour with post-industrial LDPE film. The combined washing-pelletizing system can can reach 700~ 900kg with the AG film depending on the level of contamination.

According to the production manager, the system converts agricultural films into recycled material that can be used for the production of garbage bags and construction covers, made from one hundred percent recycled plastic. The BOPP recycled pellets are used for injection related products such as PP chairs.

The washing line first covers the initial size-reduction and pre-washing of the film, followed by a separation technique designed to separate heavier plastics from lighter plastics. The washed and dried film flakes are then processed by Polystar’s Repro-Felx pelletizing system, which features a double degassing and die-face pelletizing system. The extrusion system is optimized for materials that are more difficult to process with humidity level up to 7%.

The multi-national company plans to expand this year in its branch in Dubai, UAE with the third set up after Portugal and UK. In August, Polystar will be installing 3 more similar systems in Algeria and Vietnam for the same application.
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