Effective production expansion
PolyComp opts again for KraussMaffei Berstorff extruder

PolyComp GmbH in Norderstedt near Hamburg specializes in contract manufacture and license production of complex engineering plastics. For the fourth time already, the company opted for a KraussMaffei Berstorff extrusion line.

Text Andreas Weseler  Photos PolyComp GmbH

Explaining the company’s latest investment decision, Dipl.-Ing. Simone Patermann, Head of the Process Engineering & Project Division at PolyComp, says: “To start with, we are extremely satisfied with the first three lines we bought from KraussMaffei Berstorff. Apart from that, offering the same plant technology as our customers use in their own facilities strengthens their confidence in us.”

PolyComp uses the twin-screw extruder for a wide product range

And – last but not least – the substantial technical and economic benefits were of decisive importance for the equipment choice. “The short downtimes combined with the high flexibility achieved by the easy-to-service design and the reduced retooling time are essential advantages for us. All factors together allow a wide range of different products to be offered to our customers.”

Twin-screw extruder ZE BluePower
Twin-screw extruder ZE BluePower
High flexibility and minimum downtimes

A complete extrusion line – from material metering and compounding right through to material discharge – has been installed in the PolyComp facilities. The core component of this line is a ZE65x50D twin-screw extruder of the BluePower series rated for outputs of up to 1500 kilograms per hour. Thanks to the extensive modular range of 4D and 6D barrel sections with optimized cooling and different screw elements, it offers the widest variety of configuration options. PolyComp can thus perform rapid recipe changes and produce relatively small batch sizes at constantly high productivity – which is extremely important in the field of contract and license compounding.

The company sets high expectations in the effects of the enlarged free screw volume (1.65 OD/ID diameter ratio) combined with the torque density of up to 16 Nm/ cm³, in particular. With these design features, the output rate can be significantly increased, while the energy efficiency is simultaneously enhanced.  

Increase of output

Using two side feeders, different powder additives can be reliably incorporated and compounded at high output rates. The side feeder in “UltraFeed” version is available for compounding also highly-filled compounds. This variant features an integrated vacuum degassing system that removes trapped air before the fillers reach the processing section of the extruder. Compared to side feeders without degassing system, the total volume is reduced and the apparent density can be almost tripled. This results in a substantial output increase.

In addition, outstanding flexibility is ensured by the melt pump, screen changer, strand extrusion die and underwater pelletizing system. The integrated solution is completed by a temperature-controlled water system with continuous filtration, a spiral conveyor for pellet drying, pellet sieving trough and a ventilation system. Nine loss-in-weight feeders and new additive and filler feeding stations provide the flexibility required to fulfil almost all customer requirements.