Bowling Green, Ohio (February 26, 2009) -Phoenix Technologies announces the construction of its first commercial recycled polyethylene terephthalate line (rPET) for the production of LNO™c food grade resin. The line is being built at the company’s headquarters facility here and is expected to be operational beginning of the second quarter 2009.
The line, being built as a response to increased demand for post-consumer, food grade rPET for a variety of blow molding, injection molding and thermoforming applications, will be producing a projected 10 million pounds of resin annually. The new capability is based on Phoenix’s patented rPET technology which produces resin under the company’s LNO™c brand. (The technology is also available for licensing or purchase as a turnkey operation.)
“We’ve listened to the marketplace and have been able to engineer a resin that eliminates or minimizes many of the challenges that have prevented rPET from becoming a commercially viable alternative for many applications in the past. These include color, viscosity, acetaldehyde (AA) content and others. We are pleased to announce that our LNO™c resin is currently being trialed for a variety of containers-including water, beverage, deli, drinking cups, etc.,” said Lori Carson, sales and marketing manager, Phoenix Technologies.
The LNO™c process relies on Phoenix’s patented “extremely small particle size” technology. The tiny particle size enables much quicker decontamination (less than 1 vs. 4 hours) compared to other processes, resulting in faster output and significant energy savings. (The “c” in the brand name refers to the “compacted” resin that is the end result.)
LNO™c technology produces rPET with superior color and yield as compared to other methods. Further, it has lower AA levels which positively impact taste properties. Another benefit is its higher intrinsic viscosity (IV) or molecular weight which more closely matches the IV found in virgin resins. This enables higher package performance.
“Color, yield and taste attributes have traditionally been stumbling blocks in producing viable rPET-particularly with very sensitive liquids, such as water. Our LNO™c process overcomes those obstacles,” Carson said.
Although there have been successful trials of up to 100%, Phoenix is expecting most food grade applications to run between 25-50% rPET. The percentage of rPET vs. virgin resin will depend on individual product and processing parameters coupled with supply and economic impact.
In addition to creating rPET resin for sale directly to blow/injection molding and thermoforming operations, the company is also making its technology available to others (via license, partnership or turnkey system installation) wishing to set up their own rPET operation.
“Our philosophy is that rPET supply is better suited to multiple, smaller, processing operations across North America, vs. one or two large capacity plants. We believe in a local ‘consume, collect, convert’ approach. By locating rPET production in closer proximity to resin users, you improve supply times and reduce the carbon footprint,” Carson explained.
Phoenix has teamed with Conair, Cranberry Township, PA, to build modular LNO™c processing equipment. This includes a grinder that converts rPET flake into extra small particle-size powder, a compactor to compress the powder in pellets and a standard resin dryer. The system requires a small foot print (less than 2,500 sq. ft.) and can easily be taken apart and transported to a new location, if desired.
About Phoenix Technologies
Phoenix Technologies is a global leader in recycled rPET manufacturing. The company produces clean, consistent and high-grade rPET resin pellets from post consumer recycled plastic flake shipped from all over the world. As the foremost manufacturer of rPET, Phoenix sets standards for quality, technology, service and value. Phoenix Technologies is a member of Plastic Technologies, Inc., Holland, OH family of companies. For more information: www.phoenixtechnologies.net.