Nonwovens Spotlight: Machinery & Equipment Review

By Nonwovens Industry Staff | August 6, 2012

Major suppliers of nonwovens machinery offer new technological developments.

A.Celli Nonwovens    
A.Celli Nonwovens offers printing technology for nonwovens, PP/PE film and tissue. The company can report three references for its printing technology since its launch at INDEX 2011. The technology offered by A.Celli enables multi-color printing using UV-, water- and solvent-based techniques to serve the nonwovens market with the highest quality of print. A.Celli Nonwovens’ printing technology is specially designed to be integrated with the customer’s existing line. This enables the roll goods producer to offer value added fabrics with aesthetic benefits that converters are now looking for to empower their brands with designs and images for product differentiation without having to depend on external suppliers for their printing needs.
In addition to its printing technology, A.Celli Nonwovens specializes in winding, slitting and roll handling and packaging lines based on innovative but user-friendly, durable technology for new or existing lines. The company also offers state-of-the-art, patented technology to integrate master roll winding and slitting such as Slittomatic automatic knives positioning system, Corematic core cutting systems and shaft handling featuring the Spacerless concept for core positioning. Slittopack is A.Celli Nonwovens’ roll handling and packaging system, which offers a fully integrated downstream solution for complete process control and integration. 

Continuing to innovate and focus on delivering inspection solutions with production intelligence to improve performance, one of AccuSentry’s newest targets is the elastic adhesive application process.  
AccuSentry’s Adhesive Profiling System uses specialized lighting, advanced image acquisition and processing technology and powerful new software tools to give line operators control over the vital elastic adhesive application process. The system ensures proper applicator setup, verifies adhesive position, identifies clogged nozzles and measures application consistency and consumption. 
Adhesive Profiling provides real-time control graphs to monitor adhesive add-on rate, leading edge position, position control, steady state spray consistency and aggregate excess length. By accurately monitoring this vital process in real-time, line operators can achieve consistent adhesive application across time, changing speeds and material variation. With the Adhesive Profiling System, manufacturers can finally accurately monitor the vital adhesive application process in real-time. 

Airlaid Nonwovens System
Supplying turnkey airlaid lines, Airlaid Nonwovens System has developed its new 3D - JET forming system technology. The new type of forming head consists of three perforated drums and three needle rollers positioned above a suction box and the wire run. (3D means three drum system.)
The secondary drum with interior grinding and dosing effect minimizes the gram-per-square-meter variation in both cross and machine directions compared to other air-forming systems. Primary drums also serve as a separator of fiber bundles which are taken out for extra opening in a small wheel disc mill. The company’s new hammermill design with special rotor and beaters guarantees a nit free defibration.
Other new technologies include winding systems for nonwovens webs including complete packing and roll handling systems; a cooling unit for keeping spray wires clean during production; FDA approved mold release wire coating systems; spray system with in-line binder mixing system—a fast system to change spray mixing parameters during production.

Alliance Machine and Engraving    
Alliance Machine and Engraving has received a major order from a prominent southeastern U.S. nonwovens manufacturer. The order entails the production of a four roll horizontal, two zone hot oil calendar for processing carded, cross lapped, needle punched or heat fused polypropylene or polyester materials up to 205 inches wide. The unit will feature independent temperature controllers, a self contained oil heating system and custom nip cooling manifolds with adjustable gates for preset web widths.

ANDRITZ combines the expertise of three leaders in the nonwovens industry: Andritz Asselin-Thibeau, Andritz Küsters and Andritz Perfojet. Andritz supplies customized concepts for the nonwovens industry from forming to finishing. In the spunlace sector, Andritz is the only machine manufacturer acting as system supplier and offering high-speed integrated production lines with unequalled energy efficiency ratio: neXline spunlace includes innovative technologies like the Isoweb TT card, the Jetlace hydroentanglement process, the neXaqua dewatering unit, the Perfodry through-air dryer and the neXcal twin embossing calender. This optimum solution for top-speed spunlace lines provides a major competitive advantage to producers of commodity end-uses. The unique combination of TT card and Jetlace Essentiel produces lightweight spunlace at very high capacity and low MD/CD ratio.
For Andritz, sustainability is a continuous driver for developing innovative processes. Combining the wetlaid and spunlace technologies has resulted in the neXline wetlace, producing fully biodegradable nonwovens with neither chemical additives nor thermal bonding. Moreover, for durables markets like geotextile, automotive or filtration, Andritz provides modern solutions in needlepunching lines. Andritz’s latest development in the crosslapping technology for technical end-uses, the ACS system, is capable of handling bulky card webs when feeding a crosslapper. Combined with the needle loom series A50, the ProDyn technology guarantees best uniformity of the web.

Beta LaserMike         
Leading global provider of precision measurement and control solutions, Beta LaserMike, reports that its innovative LaserSpeed non-contact laser encoder has helped nonwovens manufacturers to measure the length and speed of products accurately during production to avoid costly product overages and shortages, as well as reduce product scrap and rework.
The copmany’s LaserSpeed encoder uses advanced, laser-based technology to measure the length and speed of product precisely during production without making contact with the material. This laser encoder projects a unique pattern on the surface of the product. As the product moves, light is scattered back to the LaserSpeed unit. This information is translated into product speed and pulses are produced to determine the product length. Length and speed measurements are captured with better than +0.05% accuracy, according to the company. Beta LaserMike offers a complete line of LaserSpeed encoders with measurement speeds up to 39,400 ft/min (12,000 m/min), standoff distances to 39.4 in (1000 mm),and measurement depth of field to 3 inches (100 mm).

Focusing on high-speed equipment for high quality products, Bicma’s most recent activities and developments are in the field of adult diaper and incontinence machinery. The company has developed intelligent technical solutions to manufacture new and modern product concepts with add-on shaped ears in zero-waste technology and with a smart size change concept. For the light incontinence market the latest development is a light incontinence machine with short-cut foam and a speed of 1000 products/minute or 300 m/minute. 
Another focal point of Bicma’s ongoing improvements and developments is the new baby diaper machine generation running up to 1,000 products/minute or 600 m/minute, including elastic ears. This machine generation launched at Index 2011 implies several technological innovations and is also available for production of adult diapers, adult shaped pads, light incontinence and feminine care products. Bicma is also developing and offering customized solutions for individual requirements and projects even beyond the traditional hygiene applications.

www.brueckner-tm.de; www.fi-tech.com
Brückner is known as a leader in manufacturing and design of advanced finishing lines for technical and classical textiles. The company’s newly developed Power-Frame Eco Stenter features low-tension fabric transport, minimum energy consumption and maximum productivity. With a central heating system, a completely new air guidance system, and a sophisticated temperature control system, a savings of up to 30% of energy can be achieved when compared to standard stenter frames with heat recovery, the company says.
Brückner has also recently invested intensively in new technologies and applications for the nonwovens industry. The company recently launched a new machinery concept for drying of spunlaced nonwovens. The new flow-thru Super-Flow BH Dryer is modular in design, allowing for a flexible system that can be enlarged any time for further process capability in the future. Brückner’s new machinery concept provides for uniform drying across the fabric width produced by a special application of thermal energy and uniform temperature distribution through the complete drying process due to finely tuned air circulation provided by alternating split-flow design.

Card Clothing & Services
Card Clothing & Services, Inc. (CCS) has developed a new electronic blend line weight control system that can be incorporated on new multiple hopper blend lines or retrofitted to an existing blend line.
The UL/CE compliant system is designed around off the shelf components manufactured by Siemens, Allen Bradley and others. The PLC based touch screen control system includes features such as receipt management, equipment auto start/stop, active weight control, alarming, graphs, trending, spreadsheet reporting, help screens, remote online support and multilingual text.
The new CCS electronic weighing system is able to store hundreds of blend receipts in the internal memory and on a flash drive. The system actively corrects any variance in the fiber weight and/or percentage. The alarming feature will notify an operator if a hopper runs low of fiber. 

Catbridge Machinery           
Catbridge Machinery designs and manufactures innovative, efficient slitter rewinders as well as advanced meltblown production lines. To optimize performance, equipment is tailored to each customer’s exact materials and process. Catbridge slitter rewinders integrate the latest technologies and features to handle all types of nonwovens and production needs effectively.
A recent slitter built for highly-extensible spunlace nonwovens, for example, achieves very low tensions, preventing material distortion. Features include a center and surface driven unwind and rewind and lightweight carbon fiber rolls. A different machine for thick nonwovens provides rapid unwind loading and rewind loading, essential for maximizing productivity when processing thicker materials with limited footage. This slitter incorporates a floor pick-up unwind with edge-guide and anti-telescoping rolls along with a rewind adapted for quick changeovers and roll wrapping. 
Popular Catbridge slitter rewinders for nonwovens include the Model 210, a robust, high-speed two-drum surface winder. To boost productivity, the Model 210 offers technologies including innovative knife placement systems and a powerful yet user-friendly control system. Another popular model, the 401 continuous winder, provides automatic cut-off and transfer. To accommodate varying needs, the machines can be equipped with specialized webpaths and unwind configurations, web inspection and roll discharge systems, as well as coating and laminating systems, perforators or calenders. Additionally, Catbridge builds a compact, quick-install “plug and play” meltblown line ideal for production or research and development. A unique die design provides extremely precise laydown control for ultra-fine, high-quality fibers. For larger capacities, Catbridge offers a multi-die system with impressive throughput. Both modular lines are optimized to handle the latest metallocene resins as well as conventional Z-N based polypropylene. The lines are also capable of producing sub-micron meltblown for high-performance filtration media.

CB Packaging-Italy   
CB Packaging-Italy, manufacturer of technologically advanced, reliable packaging equipment for hygienic soft disposable products (sanitary napkins, baby diapers, incontinence products, wet and dry wipes, tissue and multipack packages) has presented its new Leonardo 500 fully automatic integrated stacker and bagger for filling and packaging of baby diapers. High speeds allow for 800 pieces per minute.

CTC International    
CTC International, West Caldwell, NJ, has introduced its Model S-900AB-ACV Power Butt Splicer, which is suitable for splicing a variety of materials, including nonwovens, packaging materials, thick films and other thick or double ply materials. The heavy-duty cantilevered unwind design features integral roll lifting and can hold two full 40-inch diameter rolls. The unit features vector-driven unwind spindles as standard, with servo drives optional.

Dover Flexo Electronics
Tension controls manufacturer Dover Flexo Electronics (DFE) has introduced its new SteadyWeb5 Digital Tension Controller. Available in a full enclosure or panel-mount version, the SteadyWeb5 is an automated closed-loop tension controller that takes input signals from tension transducers (in the machine’s web path) and supplies a compensated control signal to a tensioning device, such as a drive, brake or clutch. The controller maintains a set tension in any zone of a nonwovens web converting process.
A clear menu structure, scroll knob, diagrams and illustrations make setup simple on the large 4.3-inch color display. The graphic user interface is helpful to production technicians who are trying to train machine operators and get them up-to-speed on tension control in less time.
Features like bar-graph, analog and histogram run-mode views, TuneView, diameter calculation and diagnostic tools help to enhance the user’s understanding of process tension variables. 

Falu AG          
Switzerland-based Falu AG and Italy-based Bellini & Meda Srl have joined forces in the area of the cotton swab business. Falu will assume responsibility for customers, markets, distribution and product design under the brand name Falu; Bellini & Meda will assume responsibility for manufacturing components, modules and assemblies for the cotton business. Bellini & Meda will continue its food machine business in its own right and will remain a specialist in the field of food packaging machines.

Fives North American          
A premier provider of innovative, engineered web guiding solutions, Fives North American, Cleveland, OH, offers the SimPlex product line, which the company says sets the industry standard for simplicity through straight-forward operation and plug-and-play installation. With more than 50 years of application expertise, the company offers a broad spectrum of capabilities to improve web handling and guiding for nonwovens and technical textile converting operations.

Formfiber Denmark ApS
Formfiber SPIKE AirCarding is an innovative airlaid nonwoven forming technology designed to form carding length or shorter fibrous raw materials. SPIKE AirCarding is ideal for companies whose mat product application requires heavy-basis weight mats up to 10,000 gsm.
SPIKE AirCarding substantially reduces the amount of bonding fiber required for mat formulations, delivers consistently good formation and excels at forming dissimilar fiber lengths for multi-fiber mat formulations, when applied to both high and low density mat applications, the company says.
The product is also applicable if a web product application requires low-basis weight webs of 10 gsm or more. SPIKE AirCarding technology is being applied to applications with production line speeds of up to 600 mpm, delivers consistently good formation with short fiber lengths, and excellent productivity.
Formfiber SPIKE AirCarding Technology offers the following commercial advantages: substantial forming capacities of up to 1000 kg per hour per meter width of former; will form most natural or synthetic fibers with lengths from 1 to 102 mm (4 inches); will form 400 mm (15.75 inches) or less mat thicknesses; forming zone widths of 600-5000 mm (24-197 inches) are commercially available; new Formfiber Corporate facilities in Denmark offer 310 & 600 mm test plant facilities; and a new semi-commercial 600 mm SPIKE AirCarding production line will be available for Formfiber client’s market and product development applications during the fourth quarter of 2012.

GDM S.p.a.     
The design principles developed by GDM for its DISCovery platform are a breakthrough innovation to deliver value added solutions in today’s disposable hygiene business arena. The platform is the ideal solution for the task of coupling quality and volumes, at the same time looking for high precision, reduced product costs and user-friendly operations. The project aims to improve machine performance (efficiency/waste) and process reliability; increase line production speed; improve finished product quality; make interaction between machine and operator even simpler; reduce space requirements, noise level, material usage, energy consumption, waste level and ultimately environmental footprint.
In practice, DISCovery uses the following principles and solutions: eliminating slip sources between different materials through a more stable process, to obtain less waste and increased application accuracy; low speed processes and high speed ones are connected by specially designed GDM repitching units; extensive use of automation (virtual axes and electronic cams) to reduce size change time significantly; use of a more intuitive operator interface; much reduced web path length and tensions to cut waste at ramp-up/ramp-down phase; reduced machine floor space to less than half by complete process redesign; more compact vacuum systems and less web tension to reduce power absorption. Basic performance of DISCovery includes: speed: 600 meters/min or 1200 pcs/min, depending on product size; efficiency: ≥90%; waste: ≤2%; floor space: approximately 250 square meters for the overall converting line (raw material loading included).

GEVAS pursues excellence in the design and manufacturing of high quality packaging machines for hygienic care products. The company’s team produces innovative packaging ideas within short time-to-market cycles, developing operator-friendly, reliable high performance machines that can be adapted to specific customer requirements. Recent examples include the development of highly flexible packaging solutions capable of running extremely low counts (4 diapers per package) as well as extremely high counts (200 diaper per package); the development of low cost packaging solution for bundling; and the cooperation with major machine manufactures to provide solutions in the most diverse markets. 
Increasing machine efficiencies and streamlining production processes by ongoing development of upgrades for existing machines, as well as close understanding of the market is the guarantee that GEVAS machines are always a secured investment for the future.
Primary packaging options include those for automated filling of products such as baby diapers, adult incontinence, feminine hygiene, etc. into bags. This category features many different machine models tailored to customer requirements, including stackers, baggers and sealers.
Secondary packaging options include thosefor packaging or overwrapping filled bags with PE film to form tight bundles—an attractive alternative to replace cardboard boxes, and offering a huge cost saving potential. Equipment in this category ranges from low cost equipment capable of replacing the manual process of packaging filled bag in pre-made bags, all the way to fully automatic bundling machines capable of receiving product from different packaging machines, placing it in the required formation, and forming bag starting from film in rolls.  
hastem Transportbaender GmbH
Presenting a new segment-conveyor system in which the segments are clicked together, hastem Transportbaender GmbH has designed its equipment to meet the requirements for a completely closed surface without slots and hinges. The polygon effect is minimized because the conveyor runs nearly circular on the pulleys. The drive with pulleys forces the conveyor to a straight run and expensive control devices are avoided. The interlocking individual segments can be replaced if they are worn or damaged. A simple shortening or lengthening of the conveyor is another advantage.
With headquarters in Nördllingen, Germany, the hastem Transportbänder GmbH has produced slat conveyors for the textile industry for more than 45 years. It sees itself as the factory that solves the individual problems of the customer by using a modular system. Customers are served in addition to its own sales people with a worldwide network of agents.

Heng Chang Machinery       
Anqing Heng Chang Machinery recently launched three new machines with independent intellectual property rights: TNK-500 T-shape with elastic back ear baby diaper machine, and its auxiliary NBZ-50 baby diaper automatic packaging machine, and WBZ-70 sanitary napkin automatic packaging machine.
TNK-500 baby diaper machines, which mainly produce T-shape baby diaper products with elastic back ears, has a design speed of 600 pieces per minute (ppm), and the machine on-site showing speed is 560 ppm maximum. According to the company, the machine efficiency is >90%; product qualification rate is >98%; the single piece weight of this product is 18 g; the proportion of SAP in core is 38%; deviation ±5%; and products fully meet design requirements.
The design speed of the NBZ-50 baby diaper packaging machine is 50 bags per minute. Products go to into prefabricated bags in single row or double rows. The company claims this machine is the highest speed automatic packaging machine with domestic independent research and development, filling the domestic void of packaging machines in this field.
The company has also launched its WBZ-70 sanitary napkin automatic packaging machine. The stable working speed of this machine is 70 bags per minute; eight to 20 pieces per bag. Products go to into prefabricated bags in single row, double rows and horizontal automatic flip. It can meet the clients’ different requirements on packaging, and the machine operation is stable.

Hills, Inc.        
For 2012, Hills, Inc. announces exciting developments in staple, spunbond and meltblown fiber spinning machinery. In addition to two soon-to-be-announced bicomponent pilot installations including spunbond and meltblown equipment, Hills has successfully commissioned a bicomponent 2-meter spunbond machine in Asia. Hills’ in-house pilot facilities have seen recent upgrades and additions including: existing 0.5-meter spunbond and meltblown machine upgraded to high-temperature (450°C) capability and corrosions resistant materials; upgraded spunbond machinery allowing for high dpf fibers; installation of a new one-meter meltblown pilot line.
Laboratory and pilot extrusion machines for all of these processes are also offered. Customers may also utilize laboratory machines at the Hills facility in Florida or at other institutions worldwide, to support their product development work.
Hills continues to see strong interest in its highly flexible lab-scale multicomponent melt-spinning machine, the LBS-100. Available in single through quad-component, this machine represents the simplest to operate, easiest to maintain and most flexible lab-scale spinning machine possible, the company says. With minimal investment, universities, research institutions and commercial R&D departments may begin to develop multicomponent fibers in virtually any cross-section. In the cases where new polymers are being developed in small batches, this machine allows for the spinning of up to 100 meters of fiber with just 20 grams of polymer. The modular design of the machine allows for the configuration, or future expansion, to spunbond and meltblown, giving customers access to Hills’ multi-component technology across all types of melt-spinning.

Independent Machine         
Independent Machine Company has developed its latest system for respooling nonwoven fabric 0.50-1.5 inches wide from a previous wound spool at speeds to 750 FPM. The cantilevered Respooler has a Spool-Mate driven spool unwind with closed loop tension control and a single position computerized Traverse Winder-Model 101-E mounted together for a compact assembly. Both unwind and rewind units accommodate 12 inches maximum wide by 22 inches maximum diameter spools with a 3 inch ID core secured on 3 inch air shafts with inflate/deflate toggle.
Each unit is driven by separate AC vector drives. The Spool-Mate positions the supply spool 90 deg to the infeed web path to stabilize the lateral movement for the pneumatic loaded dancer feedback system and together with the ultrasonic diameter sensor provides closed loop tension control to the Model 101E computerized traverse winder. Material is pulled from the dancer by the winding spool through a set of finger guides and grooved wheels to an adjustable tension isolation nip station that moves with the traverse motion actuated by the programmable servo drive. Entry of the slit strand onto the rewind core is positioned by an interchangeable traversing rolling guide sized for the slit strand width. The rewind has an adjustable pneumatic lay-on roll to control roll packing pressure and density and provide a signal of diameter measurement. The computerized traverse with keypad operator interface will program pitch, stroke length, and dwell to 720 degrees. The unit is equipped with Smartwinders software for various winding patterns including level, taper and reverse taper.

ISRA Vision    
ISRA Vision, a global supplier of high-speed optical surface inspection systems for quality control, provides surface inspection systems and yield management software for process and converting optimization for printed and un-printed materials The company’s new generation of high-speed surface inspection systems meet the demands of the latest high speed production lines by reliably detecting the full range of defects at the highest web speeds. Formation defects such as drips, clumps, eye brows, wrinkles, folds, streaks, thin spots, holes and contaminates are detected and classified. The system provides the operator with immediate information to react to problems as they occur, before valuable material is wasted. Rolls or roll segments can be graded and slit patterns can be optimized based on defect content.
For high-quality materials and demanding markets, embarrassing defects and out of specification quality can result in expensive claims. ISRA Vision’s new multi-mode LED lighting technology results in less complex and smaller form factor systems at reduced cost.   

Jiangsu JWC Machinery       
Offering a full service adult diaper machine, the JWC-LKC-SV is designed and produced according to a high configuration. Capacity can reach 300 ppm, according to Jiangsu JWC Machinery Co., Ltd. Machine features include fluff core mold wheel molding device, frontal tape position cutting functions, SAP automatic suction feeding and side tape outside supplying units, which can achieve auto changing and splicing functions.
Other features include standing cuff and leg elastic outside unwinding function, defect scan system, missing raw materials detection; dust-cleaning devices, waste materials collection devices, sound reducing devices, hot melt applicators, cross bridge feeding with easy checking adhesive volume; the crusher can achieve 700KG per hour and equip nine sets of web guiders to rectify running direction of raw materials. The machine can be controlled remotely.

K-Tron Pitman
The patented K-Tron Bulk Solids Pump (BSP) feeder line has been specifically designed and engineered to provide gentle, precise feeding of free-flowing pellets, granules, flakes and friable materials. BSP feeders do not use the usual screws/augers, belts or vibratory trays to convey the material. Instead, they utilize positive displacement action to feed free flowing materials with accuracy, offering uniform discharge, consistent volume and gentle handling. The BSP feeders have vertical rotating discs that create feeding ducts. Material moves smoothly from storage hopper to discharge outlet through a “product lock-up zone,” achieving true linear mass flow. With no pockets or screws and only one moving part, these compact feeders are cleaned in seconds, making them ideal for applications with frequent material changes.

MD Viola Macchine S.r.l.       
The last developments at MD Viola include two new machines, for baby and adult products with nonwoven ears, as well as hook and loop closure systems. This new product configuration allows for a reduction in the total amount of material used for diapers while maintaining the overall diaper performance. Less plastic and nonwoven material used for the diaper construction helps reduce the diaper cost while immediately reducing impact on the environment.

Mondon SAS
Based on a strong design, Mondon SAS has developed an automatic unwinder with flying splice at 400 m/min for nonwoven converting; it can accept rolls up to 2400 mm wide and a diameter of 1200 mm. This solution can be completed with an automatic loading of the bobbins from a vertical or horizontal position. This equipment is particularly recommended for non-stop processes downstream the unwinder. Thanks to the flying splice of the web, Mondon offers a compact solution, which doesn’t require any accumulator of product. Tension is accurately managed through load cells. 

Nordson Corporation           
The patent-pending Allegro elastic attachment nozzle from Nordson Corporation, Duluth, GA, combines the right elements to help companies optimize adhesive use while maximizing production efficiency and product quality. Novel contact adhesive deposition and post-application process air produce a consistent, repeatable adhesive coating with exceptionally low variability on each individual elastic strand and with excellent registration.
While able to accommodate a wide range of production parameters and materials, Allegro nozzles are particularly unique in their ability to support high-speed production lines and maintain close elastic centers. The elastic features for disposable hygiene products benefit from exceptional bond integrity and elastic performance.

From packaging machines to palletizers, Optima offers the entire process chain for nonwoven products. Flexible and harmonized solutions are worked out for software, mechanics and electronics. Some of the interface design is already performed during preparatory phases. This translates into faster process implementation  and ensures maximum process safety, which is tested and verified in detail. 
Optima has set up an exemplary process chain at its in-house “Technidrom.” This pilot plant allows a close look on-site and is available for product testing. Using their own products, potential buyers can realize the efficiency of the line’s components. The equipment processes diapers, feminine care products, napkins, etc.
An overview of functions includes primary packaging (product packing): packaging into foil or folding boxes; quality control: metal detection, length and weight monitoring, reject function and product marking; secondary packaging with grouping (pack packaging): products in primary packaging are packed into boxes or foil for transport. High-end consumer packages use printed foil. If required, and depending on the product line’s complexity and flexibility, a separate grouping system is incorporated upstream of the secondary packaging unit. The grouping system groups together a set number of packages and supports a wide range of different formations. For tertiary packaging (unit packing), products in secondary packaging are arranged in layers on a pallet and then stabilized by stretch foil. A forklift transports the finished pallets onto the truck or to the warehouse.

Paper Converting Machine Company        
With more than 25 years of experience and 500 machines in production worldwide, Paper Converting Machine Company (PCMC) specializes in the design and manufacture of wet wipe machines at its U.S. and U.K. factories. Equipment lines are capable of producing stacks of wipes from 60 to 500 packs per minute. New developments include the all servo Mako saw, which provides a continuous motion, orbital, cutting head equipped with a dual cutoff blade(s) and servo driven Doubler Stacker. The Mako saw technology is used primarily for PCMC’s Clipper series, which runs a wide range of materials and accommodates almost every flat-pack format.
The Clipper series offers interfolded and non-interfolded flat pack wet wipes. Patented technology allows interconnection of clips to make pop up stacks. It offers quick changeover wetting and folding modules with the flexibility to accommodate virtually any flat-pack format. Utilizing the latest Rockwell drives and controls allows for a low maintenance state-of-the-art design. These machines are modular and will grow with a business to increase capacity and productivity.
The Marlin is PCMC’s latest generation crossfolder; features include hygienic friendly vacuum-less web control, thread-less wetting system components and servo controlled cutting and folding. This machine is designed for uptime and efficiency; it is also designed for a short footprint and easy to reach adjustments. It maintains excellent stack quality through the full speed range up to 2000 wipes per minute. 

Radiant Energy Systems, Inc.          
The through air system from Radiant Energy, Hawthorne, NJ, is designed to pull heated air through a permeable co-polymer web material, resulting in rapid and efficient bonding of the nonwoven web. The dryer is custom designed to accommodate up to a 4-inch-thick, 84-inch-wide recycled material web with polypropylene fiber as a binder. The line temperature ranges from 150˚F to 400˚F. Line speed range is 5-50 FPM.
The gas-fired heating/bonding system provides a top to bottom air flow pattern with conveyor support. The design includes an upper insulated plenum chamber where heated, conditioned air is uniformly distributed over the top of the web through a full width pressurized plenum. The air is pulled through the web and the conveyor belt and is then re-circulated from the bottom suction plenum back through a burner chamber to be reheated to the set supply air temperature. This dryer has a portion of its air exhausted from the dryer to maintain a negative balance.
Pilot line testing of nonwovens and many other substrates for heating, coating, drying, curing, laminating and embossing applications can be done at Radiant Energy System’s headquarters.

REM Slitter Rewinders
The REM Model 2000 center/surface slitter rewinder is ideal for slitting and rewinding nonwovens and textiles of all kinds. The model 2000 processes webs up to 60 inches wide at speeds up to 1500 FPM into slit rolls as narrow as two inches with tension ranges as low as 0.05 PLI. The model is available with rewind diameters to 60 inches. Unique winding feature includes closed loop surface wind with center assists assuring delicate uniform roll density and sensitive tension regardless of roll weight. Standard features include: pull rolls that isolate slitting from unwind and rewind tension zones; dual spreader rolls that ensure slit separation; articulated rewind arms for lowering slit rolls to floor; Allen Bradley Powerflex 753 Series AC Vector multi-motor drive system; Allen Bradley CompactLogix PLC for control of machine functions; and Allen Bradley PanelView Plus 10-inch color touch screen operator interface for entering and displaying data and recipe storage. It is also available with a wide variety of unwind stands.

Richard Hough
Richard Hough Ltd, a manufacturer of calender rolls and squeezing rolls, has this year supplied its Syncast polyamide covered resilient calender rolls into two new geotextile line installations of 230-inch-wide nonwoven calenders. Each calender, purchased by industry-leading companies, uses 2x Syncast rolls. One line is in Georgia; the other is in South Carolina.
Additionally, an industry-leading nonwoven manufacturer of medical garments has recently purchased the company’s second Roberto squeezing roll for use on a 140-inch-wide final squeeze of a hydro-entanglement line in North Carolina. The process engineer commented: “We spent more than $70,000 on rubber back-up rolls last year. Each time we had to interrupt a run and go to our back-up rolls which we have no confidence in. The Roberto roll performs great within our application and delivers the necessary flat profile, water dissipation results that we need.”

Robatech AG
The Swiss company Robatech AG, with its RobaFeed equipment, has developed a fully integrated, automatic filling system for hotmelt granulate. The company guarantees a constant quantity of adhesive in the applicator as well as a high safety for operating personnel.
The advantages of the new automatic RobaFeed system include more efficiency and safety at a lower cost. The innovative system is suitable to fill Robatech as well as other hotmelt equipment with granulate from a separate container. Granulate is fed through a suction tube placed in the container holding the adhesive granulate. The integrated venturi generates a negative pressure which attracts and feeds the granulate. The vibrator fitted to the suction tube supports the suction process. As soon as the set minimum fill level is reached, the level supervision transmits a signal to the control integrated in the equipment to release the filling cycle. The system monitors the stock of granulate and the filling process reliably. Constant processing temperatures are essential for continuous filling and represent a further advantage. In case of a nonconformity, the process is interrupted and a corresponding message is released.
Thanks to automatic filling of the closed tank, operators are safe from contact with hot adhesive. Contaminants from the environment are prevented from reaching the adhesive. Vapors escaping from the fed granulate pass through an activated carbon filter and don’t pollute the environment.

For more than 50 years, RotoMetrics has worked closely with convertors on challenging applications and materials. With worldwide locations the company has built a reputation as a truly global supplier of rotary converting stations and cutting tools. RotoMetrics uses its product development experience and expertise capabilities to make even the most challenging projects possible and profitable. Offering innovative solutions to this developing process of converting has been the company’s focus since day one.  
The product line of rotary cutting dies includes specialty steel grades such as powder metal and carbide alloys. The entire manufacture process is kept in-house to ensure high quality and controlled results. The company’s experience in converting not only feminine hygiene products but also diapers and disposable medical products, has led to the loyalty of worldwide customers and partnerships, who have relied on RotoMetrics to supply press ready tools. As a tool supplier, RotoMetrics offers solutions for longer dielife and quality cut results; as an equipment supplier the company offers die stations that offer solutions to many of the challenges convertors face.

S&S Specialty Systems         
S&S Specialty Systems, LLC continues to make its mark in the nonwoven industry with its diverse nonwoven converting product lines. With more than 30 years of industry experience, S&S has innovative technologies that continue to expand its customer’s market positioning.
With solutions for at-home, away-from-home and specialty products, S&S offers equipment for cross-folded, interfolded, flat and rolled products. S&S converting equipment can be configured to meet specific project needs with process options and upgrades such as tension control, splicing, printing, stacking/separation and coating.

SamHwa Machinery (SHMC)          
Located in South Korea, since 1988 SHMC has received repeat orders from clients. Several hundred needle looms have been exported worldwide to Japan, U.S., Brazil, South Africa, Poland, Russia, India, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, China and many other countries.
SHMC is specialized and strong on needle punched products for: automotive, substrates of synthetic leather, substrates of micro fiber, filter media, geotextiles, carbon fiber, felt and others. The company’s strong point is its ability to customize products to the demands of clients, with good price and delivery. The company has recently introduced its Velour Needle Loom, along with other needle looms, calendaring machines and auxiliary machines.

Sandvik Hard Materials       
As a leading company in rotary cutting solutions for the hygiene market, Sandvik Hard Materials has engineered its High Technology Concept (HTC) to meet current and future cutting challenges. The HTC concept is designed to ensure reliability and repeatability of the cut at high speed and in challenging conditions. Its main features are a tuned mass dampening system, which stabilizes the cut in case of vibrations; a specific vacuum system, optimized through CFD calculations to ensure a perfect trim and pad control; a dedicated frame design which, while ensuring a clean cut, also allows easy access and assembling/disassembling to facilitate the maintenance. The concept can be applied to baby care, feminine care and adult care cutting solutions.
The company has also engineered its Positive Bending concept. Applied either to the anvil or to the cutter, it consists of a precise system to recover the cutting interference when the weight and size of cutter and anvil work in the opposite way. By fitting the bearing blocks in between the working area and the bearer rings, the tool is bending in the opposite way with respect to gravity, thus allowing recovering the needed cutting power. Aside from ensuring outstanding cutting performances, it helps in keeping the size and the weight of the tools within acceptable limits and therefore facilitates the handling and maintenance. This technology is suitable in case of long tools (adult care applications or CD cut for baby care and adult care).
Sandvik has also developed its sleeve flexible concept where several products might be produced on the same converting line. In order to optimize the time needed for the format change, many cutting units ready to use are available. The Sandvik concept allows the user to keep the same frame on the machine and simply replace the cutting tool in five minutes. The time for the format change is optimized, as well as the initial investment (no need to buy a spare frame; just the cutter), and the performances are maximized thanks to the carbide technology for the cutter. The sleeve solution is suitable for feminine care products or baby care front ear ones.

Sonobond Ultrasonics          
West Chester, PA-based Sonobond Ultrasonics offers units that seal, sew and trim—all in one quick pass. High-frequency vibratory waves create stronger and more reliable seams than those produced with traditional methods, according to the company. No thread, glue, or other consumables are required.  
In addition, the company’s SeamMaster continuous-bonding rotary system seams pleated filter edges and easily handles bulky materials. Since there are no stitch holes, disposable nonwoven medical garments assembled with the SeamMaster comply with OSHA regulations for protecting healthcare workers against blood-borne pathogens. Plunge bonders handle large, difficult-to-bond and multi-layer materials. Models seal ends of filter bags and produce box-style filters, as well as attach heavy-weight filter bags to rigid plastic collars. 
Sonobond bonders assemble HEPA-rated filters, industrial and commercial vacuum bags, oil absorbers and automobile air filters. They also assemble geotextiles for the agricultural industry. The company provides free sample bonds of material for companies and then recommends the appropriate machine for application. Every unit can be customized to specific requirements and is backed by superior service.

The company’s Calemard and Decoup+ brands have been involved in spooling and splicing technologies for more than 10 years. In 1998, Calemard presented the Taurus line to ADL (acquisition and distribution layer) producers. Today, after having already delivered more than 60 spooling heads worldwide, Calemard has recently launched its latest version of the Pegase II.
The Pegase II has been developed to slit and spool sensitive nonwovens. The targets: to produce jumbo rolls and to guarantee no stress, no tension, no elongation, no twist on the nonwovens strips. The company’s spooling technology has been engineered to respond to the ADL producers’ need to improve productivity, mainly for baby diaper production lines, by producing jumbo spools at high speed (up to 600 m/min). These jumbo spools hold 12 to 40 km of ADL to give roughly 10 times running time of slit pancakes on a diaper line.
This third generation of Pegase uses state-of-the-art technical solutions: accurate web regulation tension, very precise web guiding and strip conveying, wide double shaft unwinder for up to 850 mm mother roll loading down time and various options for productivity improvement (e.g., VPN liaison, production parameter acquisition, pneumatic counter-cutter shaft).
Another important advantage of this new Pegase generation is its new ergonomic ultrasonic splicing unit. Developed by the company’s DECOUP+ brand, this two steps’ web splicing solution is a proven and accurate technology to produce quality joins, without any color fading or burns. Technology consists of an ultrasonic cutting operation that splices two layers together combined with an ultrasonic lamination, which enables the splice to recover nearly the original characteristics of the web.
From the first new generation line commissioned in 2010 to today, Spoolex has installed seven new Pegase lines and 48 spooling units around the world. Two new lines, with a total of 18 spooling units are now in progress in the company’s plant to be commissioned beginning of 2012.

TECHNOplants has released a new range of machines that allow companies to use thermo-bonding lines in a versatile way—producing vertically lapped as well as multilayer materials.
Vertical lapped materials are well known and appreciated by professionals of the insulation and padding industry because of their thermo-acoustic properties and compressive strength. Nevertheless the vertical lapping technology has never achieved a major success due to its high initial cost, according to TECHNOplants.
The company proposes a new layout of machines. It avoids the purchase of an entire and dedicated line complete of a card, a vertical lapper, a thermobonding oven followed by cutting and winding/stacking equipment.
To produce vertically lapped materials it is sufficient to add to your existing thermobonding line: a web turner, to be mounted on top of the existing cross-lapper; and a vertical lapper (FIBERwave), to be applied to the entrance of the existing double band oven. Such a retrofit requires an investment between €160 million and €200 million depending on the working width of the card.
This modified machine layout allows companies to use their production lines at the best of its possibilities. By using a single doffer carding machine it is possible to either feed the web turner and vertical lapper or feed the existing cross-lapper to continue producing traditional, cross-lapped materials.
By using a double doffer carding machine it is also possible to use the cross-lapper in conjunction with the a web turner and the vertical lapper in order to obtain composed (multilayer) products that combine both technologies. By using together the web turner and the vertical lapper the production output of the carding machine will not be reduced.
TECHNOplants has built its own pilot line in its Pistoia facility, where visitors can see trials and make their own samples, and discover all the alternative solutions that can be accomplished due to this multilayer technology. The pilot line consists of fiber preparation, a card with cross-lapper and the web turner; an airlay card; a vertical lapper; a double band oven; and a special cutting and winding unit for thermally bonded waddings.

In its constant search for innovative solutions and improvements regarding wet wipes converting, Teknoweb has developed unwinding systems for individual reels that feature automatic splicing. The 1winder can be used on all types of machinery and allows for a higher level of efficiency in terms of change time, staffing and flexibility.
In partnership with the research and development division of TMC Arka, Teknoweb has also developed Automatic Case Packer systems and palletizers that are able to collect and manage the output of its converting lines at maximum efficiency. Particularly focused on reducing changeover times and pallet composition, this platform now performs at a level capable of supporting the overall production efficiency of the converting machine. A dedicated open house will be held in October 2012.
Teknoweb has a long experience in flat pack machinery innovation, which has been developed with customers of international importance, each one with different needs. For this reason, Teknoweb has always tried to improve the quality of the final product when the speed was increased. The current level offered by Teknoweb to the market is 1200 cuts per minute on flat pack converting machines.
The company has also continued to develop crossfold technology of high performance and efficiency, and each year has distinguished itself in improving the production concept, ease of maintenance and quality of the final product. The latest step up in crossfolder technology is the development of the Exige4. The Exige incorporates a modular concept in which each side can be fine-tuned independently while the other is working, increasing the overall efficiency by not requiring stopping of the complete line.  The Exige4 is able to produce up to 3000 wipes per minute and 200 packs per minute.

Testing Machines
Testing Machines, Inc., part of The TMI Group of Companies, has introduced the brand new 49-56 Digital Micrometer. The new model 49-56 combines a modern contemporary look with a robust mechanical design and improved electronics, including a digital linear encoder. The system features a comprehensive software program for controlling test speed, auto zero, auto sample detect, selectable opening distance, selectable measurement range, selectable dwell time, built-in auto sample feed option, statistics, multiple languages and calibration records. Designed for thickness measurements of sheet materials, the 49-56 can be configured to meet ISO, ASTM, EDANA or other International specifications for paper, corrugated, plastics, plastic film, tissue paper, nonwovens, textiles and other sheet like substrates.
Unlike conventional micrometers, the 49-56 precision micrometer offers a cantilever balance system to allow extremely light pressure measurements. This feature also allows adding or removing additional weights for multiple pressure applications.
Features include: modern design; movable color TFT display with touch screen; measuring range 0.000-10.000 mm; GraphMaster compatible; high resolution option (extra decimal); adjustable gap (measuring height); metric or imperial units; on screen statistics; sample detect sensor; multilingual user interface; special anvil diameters and dead weight loads available; internal calibration routine Serial port for RS232, Printer and GraphMaster output; optional internal strip feeder unit for strips up to 75 mm wide; optional Sample Support Table 49-56-01; optional Gauge blocks available (for verifying the instrument); optional footswitch (to start test).

Textest AG
Switzerland-based Textest AG has released its new FX 3300 Air Permeability Tester LabAir IV. This latest addition to the complete family of Air Permeability Testers supersedes the successful FX 3300-III, which has been in production since 1999.
The FX 3300 LabAir IV offers the accuracy and ease of operation of its predecessor, as well as some new features. The most interesting new feature is the completely new user interface (touch-screen) with the manifold possibilities to evaluate and document the results. The FX 3300 LabAir IV can be integrated into a network, if desired via Wi-Fi, and the internal memory of the instrument can be accessed, and a comprehensive test report can be generated, from any PC within the network using the internal local webserver of the instrument and any web browser in the PC. Moreover, all style information, test parameters and results can be managed centrally from the network.    
Additionally, the internal orifice disc has an automatic cleaning function, eliminating the need to clean this core part of the instrument manually. The orifice disc is now mounted vertically to keep dust or fibers from collecting on the disc, which causes leakage. 
The automatic measuring range control makes the FX 3300 LABAIR IV even easier to use than previous models. It is virtually impossible, even for untrained operators, to make any mistakes when testing, according to the company. The redesigned, sturdy clamping arm guarantees perfect alignment of the two test head halves, which is especially important when testing with small test areas.  

Xerium Technologies           
Xerium Technologies, Inc., a global manufacturer and supplier of specially engineered products used in the production of paper, nonwoven fabrics and specialty applications has introduced a range of premium belt, fabric and roll technologies to help customers further reduce operating costs, improve product quality and efficiency, and get greater value from their machines.
Huycon Belt Technology is specifically designed to produce top quality webs, from robust industrial, to highly critical medical and hygiene applications. The range for spunlaid technology is completed by designs for carding and airlaid lines. It is also available with V2 seam technology for rapid seaming and marking freeness.
Huybond Fabric Technology is engineered for the most demanding hydroentangled and spunlaced applications. Huybond fabrics deliver superior performance with excellent contamination resistance, high fiber support, web uniformity and excellent mechanical stability, the company says.
Huycoil Assembled Fabric Technology, a high performance spiral fabric technology, is ideal for machines producing airlaid, as well as certain long-term nonwovens producers where elevated temperatures are used. Huycoil fabrics are manufactured from a variety of polymers to match machine requirements. including high molecular weight polyester, PTFE fluorocarbon for contamination resistance and PPS. Huycoil fabrics are easy to install, deliver superior dimensional stability and excellent guiding and tracking.
Additionally, Vari-Bow Roll is an advanced bowed roll technology from Stowe Woodward and Mount Hope that provides precise control of materials produced in web or sheet form. Vari-Bow is ideal for machines where different weights, grades and types of materials are produced. 

VMI Holland BV        
The Netherlands-based VMI Holland BV, a worldwide machinery supplier, develops solutions for cotton pad punching and packaging. The VMI Product Handling Systems division (formerly EBM) is a market leader in high capacity cotton pad machinery, which converts cotton blanket into cotton pad stacks that are professionally bagged. The ACE 300, VMI’s fully automatic and compact pad production and packing machines, was designed especially for this nonwoven market. It incorporates the current state-of-the-art techniques including solid and rigid mechanics, low maintenance, easy operational and economic performance. Swift changeover to a large variety of pad shapes by switching product related parts ensures a highly flexible production level.  
Precot Meridian Ltd., a leading manufacturer of Yarn and Fabrics with annual revenues of more than $120 million, is setting up a nonwoven project to manufacture hygiene care products. Intending to become an important player in the cosmetic pad market, Precot found a reliable partner in VMI Holland BV, supplying innovative and high quality solutions for its new project. This year VMI will supply several of it’s new ACE 300 to Precot Meridian, as well as an HCI, high output machine.