Technological Watch

In this section, you can access to the latest technical information related to the RIGA project topic.

Developments of Friul Filiere - Technologies for the extrusion of recyclable products

It isundeniable that plastics have become an essential material in the world economytoday, but the production of better quality plastic, which is easier torecycle, is essential. In fact, there are two keywords launched by the EuropeanUnion to reduce pollution: recycle and reuse. Therefore, Friul Filiere puts itsknow-how at the service of customers to develop new products in line withEuropean directives.

Founded 40years ago as a producer of dies for the extrusion of plastic materials, the Friuli-based company now sells complete turn-key projectsfor those who want high quality performance in the production of pipes andprofiles. Friul Filiera boasts high-technology extrusion lines, completelycustomized and guaranteed 100% Made in Italy. Always committed to Research andDevelopment in order to guarantee innovative products to its customers, FriulFiliere feels comfortable facing the sustainability challenges that the markethas been proposing for several years. It has manufactured plants for the extrusionof recyclable products and of products obtained by reusing scrap from previousprocesses as raw materials.

Asignificant example is the plant for the production of FFC (Foam FiberComposite) composite profiles: Friul Filiere holds the patent for formulation,equipment, plant, process know-how and characteristics of the extruded profile.FFC is based on a mixture of thermoplastic resins and natural fibres, lightenedby closed cell expansion. The true innovative strength of this material is thepossibility to recycle and reuse in the formulation not only waste derivingfrom vegetable fibres (jute, hemp, sugar cane, etc.) but above all scrap fromthermosetting plastics classified as special waste (rubber, urea, melamine orphenolic resins, MDF (Medium-DensityFibreboard), paints,etc.). All this leads to sustainable products, representing a significantadvantage not only for the environment, but also for the producer, who can takeadvantage of a reduction in costs related to the supply of raw materials as wellas to the disposal of special waste.

Recently,for example, Friul Filiere manufactured several plants that use formulationscontaining waste from phenolic materials deriving from the production ofkitchen doors. Anyone in the world carrying out this activity accumulates tonsof waste dust for the disposal of which they must recruit specialized andauthorized companies. South American companies that came to know about FriulFiliere’s technology, decided to take the opportunity and reuse these waste to adda series of FFC extruded profiles, in particular floor planks, to their rangeof products.

 

Recyclable film for greenhouses

Concerningthe commitment to the production of recyclable products, Friul Filiere has beena partner in a project for the agricultural sector. This is a research appliedto HDPE film used for the protection of greenhouses, typically characterized bymetal eyelets useful for anchoring it to the ground, but making itnon-recyclable. The customer required the company to design a completelyrecyclable cloth. The result was the development and building of an extrusionline for the production of reinforced HDPE film thanks to the HDPE co-extrusionof two side bands and a central band that, punched, replace the aluminiumeyelets and allow the finished product to be entirely recycled. This complexplant consists of several in-line units and auxiliary machines, all managed bya single PLC, as Industry 4.0 requires. The result is a flexible system, ableto adapt and coextrude the reinforced bands also on sheets of different sizes,suitable for the production of a recyclable product and effective in itsapplication.

 

Recyclable clip bands

In order toensure the possibility to recycle the end-product, Friul Filiere has alsofocused on applications for other sectors. Just think about the technology forthe production of the clip bands used in the food industry. Traditionally theyare made of plastics and steel filaments, but the latter make the productnon-recyclable. To overcome this problem and give an appropriate solution toclip bands manufacturers, that will soon have to comply with the new rigidEuropean recycling legislation, Friul Filiere has developed a solution thatprovides for the elimination of steel filaments: a coextruded thermoplasticmaterial replaces those filaments, making the extruded product 100% plasticand, therefore, easily recyclable.

The plant includes two extruders (necessary forcoextrusion) provided with dedicated equipment. As the sole referent ofturn-key projects, as usual, Friul Filiere also supplied the customer with thedevices upstream and downstream of the extrusion line, including: the dosingand extruders feeding system, the drying plant, and the end-of-line windingunits, collecting the end product.


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