The importance of PET as a raw material for countless thermoforming applications is clearly on the rise.
Moreover, the market is not only demanding more environmentally acceptable raw materials, which should offer a high degree of recyclability (as PET does), but also thicker PET sheets. These are to be characterised by high transparency and stiffness, and thereby serve the trend towards even larger clear cups and trays for (take-away) food packaging.
Producing thick PET sheet with excellent optical properties is a very demanding process. Special attention needs to be paid to the quality of the raw material itself, raw material drying and melt treatment. Accordingly, the design of the entire line and the selected process parameters can improve the properties of thick PET sheet significantly.
The slanted, upstack roll stack mounted on the demonstration line is perfectly suited to thick PET sheet production requirements. Furthermore, on the basis of its vast experience, SML is able to offer advice on optimum process parameters for individual production needs.
Reductions in packaging material weight represent another market trend. Therefore, the PET sheet demonstration line is also equipped with a CO2 gas injection system to produce physically foamed PET sheet as an alternative and thereby widen the product portfolio of companies in the thermoforming business.
Furthermore, the demonstration line features an IR-lamination system for the production of PET/PE laminates.