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Kroenert sets new standards

High-speed symposium with new world record in silicone coating – symbiosis of machine
and substrate manufacturers
Speed is no witchcraft; it is the result of a sym- entire group of renowned partners such as
biosis of machine and substrate manufacturers. BASF, Dow Corning, Innovia, Nordson, Rohm &
This was proven on the high-speed symposium Haas, Siliconature and UPM as well as Kroen-
hosted by Maschinenfabrik Max Kroenert in ert/BMB/Drytec actively participated in the sym-
Hamburg, which was visited by 230 experts posium – a novelty according to Kroenert. In
from all over the world on the 7th and 8th of Kroenert’s opinion, the simple fact that com-
September, 2005. A new world record in sili- petitors such as BASF/Rohm and Haas or
cone coating was set in the Kroenert Technol- Nordson/Kroenert were willing to come together
ogy Center on a RECO 800 line with a breath- marks a new approach which is taking down old
taking 1,610 m/min (one land mile a minute)! An barriers.
Speed is no witchcraft…
For a period of two days, the companies of the pounds on the other, and this is what the sym-
Kroenert Group (Kroenert/BMB/Drytec) and the posium in Hamburg set out to prove. Months of
symposium partners set out to prove that higher test runs in the Kroenert Technology Center
production speeds and better quality are possi- preceded the symposium. Higher production
ble when coating label materials, single-sided speeds do not automatically mean higher en-
and double-sided covered adhesive tapes and ergy consumption for the end users of the high-
self-adhesive graphic foils using aqueous acry- speed technology. It seemed more probable to
late adhesives, thermal cross-linking silicones
or UV curing hot melts (clear-on-clear process).
The result of the symposium could be the motto
"Speed is no witchcraft!", because it was
proven that speed is a symbiosis of machine
design, substrates and coating compounds.
The cost pressure is a permanent issue for ma-
chine and substrate manufacturers. The market
constantly demands higher production speeds
and better quality. In the past few years, the
manufacturers have come continuously closer many that the energy consumption would rise in
to meeting these demands. However, the end proportion with the output. However, it was
users require a balanced interaction between generally agreed that the in-plant logistics faced
coating machines on one hand and the ma- higher requirements when coating a high
chine run ability of substrates and coating com- speeds.

September 2005 Page 1 of 4

Kroenert sets new standards

Setting up a new world record - step by step

The excitement among the visitors of the sym- shortly, production speeds of 1,000 m/min were
posium could have been measured in megavolt regarded as top speed for silicone treatment
and pressure-sensitive adhesive coating with
aqueous acrylate adhesives, but now, the Kro-
enert RECO 800, which has been in operation
since November 2004 in the Hamburg Technol-
ogy Center can run speeds of up to 1,610
m/min, making it the fastest production line of
its kind in the world. 33 m² of silicone-treated
paper with a coated web width of 1,230 mm are
produced per second. The 6 roll coating head is
a central component, where the first five rollers
are vertical and one roller is mounted horizon-
tally. Rollers made of rubber and ceramics are
used alternately; the final roller is made of steel.
as the machine operators inched the machine
The four demonstration runs shown on the two
speed up towards the new world record. Until
days of symposium are described below:
Pressure-sensitive adhesive coating for labels with water-based acrylate adhesives, type
ROBOND™ PS 7650, made by Rohm and Haas
It must have come as a surprise to many of the tain coating technology (slot die process), pro-
duction speeds of 800 m/min (18 g/m² dry) and
1,200 m/min (12 g/m² dry) were possible with-
out the coating breaking. In the process, a high-
resolution digital display made by Mahlo
showed with coating weight measurements and
fluctuations which came down at working width
of 1.230 mm to = 1 %.
It was possible to dry the product with a drying
channel, divided into six temperature control
zones and of no more than 18 m length. This is
a joint success for the producers of advanced
material adhesives in developing a new adhe-
experts that right off the bat, the new adhesive sive bonding technology with a higher ratio of
made by Rohm and Haas could be used to pro- solids, and for Drytec in designing ever more
duce an excellent quality with extremely low efficient and powerful floating dryers.
foam formation. In combination with BMB cur-
Silicone treatment of UPM Glassine HON 53 silicone paper (59 gsm substance) with Dow
Corning Syl-Off® advantage series
The demonstrations proved that production tained? Is it even possible to cure the silicone
speeds of 1,200 m/min (1.05 g/m² coating coating in a floating drying channel of no more
weight) and 1,610 m/min (1.25 g/m² coating than 18 m length and within a dwell time of no
weight) are possible. Even a permanently fo- more than 0.6 seconds? Can Drytec's "Steam-
cussed observation could not detect silicone tec" re-humidification technology move the pa-
misting. Nonetheless, questions were voiced. per into a lay flat product speed? For the mo-
Can a flawless layer of silicone be applied at ment, these questions remained unanswered.
speeds that high? Can the standards used to However, samples taken after the demonstra-
determine the thickness (colour test) be main- tion runs proved that the aims were achieved.
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Kroenert sets new standards
Each participant could take home a folder filled and its cutting angle towards the web are deci-
with samples. sive factors for the actual cutting process. High-
A further aim of the demonstration runs was to precision rollers which are perfectly synchro-
show reel changes at 1,200 m/min – which was nized with the web speed are essential to en-
novelty, because the production lines of the sure that the following rollers are smoothly inte-
participants do not yet run at that kind of pro- grated in the process. In general, larger cove
duction speed. During the automatic splicing diameters work better at higher production
procedure, a nozzle blows the cut-off material speeds.
away from the new reel. The design of the knife
Production of clear-on-clear label materials using UV-curable acrylic hot melt type AC
Resin 258 UV made by BASF
The demand for very transparent and water-in- Nordson curtain coating technology. In this
soluble labels is on the rise. These labels are in case, a Polypropylene film was laminated with a
large demand for cosmetics and household silicone treated PET-film.
cleaning agents as well as for industrial proc- Two years ago Nordson and Kroenert came to
essing materials. The symposium showed a an agreement that new methods were required
high-speed clear-on-clear coating with UV-cur- to meet the future demands of the market. The
coating technology known at the time had come
to its limits. So the two companies signed a co-
operation agreement geared towards putting a
new coating technology for the clear-on-clear
label production onto the market. The step from
a 200 mm wide application (presented in No-
vember 2004) to a coating machine with a pro-
duction width of 1.230 mm was quickly taken
and could be presented with a production
speed of 250 m/min and then of 400 m/min,
both with a coating weight of 20 g/m², respec-
tively. In combination with the applied special
adhesive, the result is a fast, bubble-free coat-
The cooperation partners Nordson and Kroen-
ert make it clear that they see a large demand
for this technology in their market segment. Un-
til now, a deadline for the market launch has not
yet been announced. However, the partners will
soon get together to come to an agreement on
the further procedure.
ing hot melts made by BASF (AC Resin) using
Pressure-sensitive adhesive coating using the water-based pressure-sensitive adhesive
Acronal V215 ® made by BASF
Even though this demonstration run was based coating procedure, all the more so after pointing
on the same equipment used the day before to out that BASF had supplied adhesive material
present pressure-sensitive adhesive coating, with more than 60 % solids. This material would
the participants were impressed to again see a have made it possible to run an even higher
coating process - this time using BASF's Ac- production speed than 1,200 m/min while com-
ronal V215 ® - with a very stable bubble-free pletely drying the web.

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Kroenert sets new standards

"Recordworthy" atmosphere
In short lectures that accompanied the four dif-
ferent demonstration runs, all participants
where informed about the highlights of high-
speed coating, starting with substrates and
coating compounds, down to the coating ma-
chines with un-winders and re-winders, coating
stations, drying channels, re-humidification,
drive and control systems.
Again and again, the demonstration runs were
accompanied by spontaneous rounds of ap-
plause, marking never before witnessed per-
formance levels.

Maschinenfabrik Max Kroenert GmbH & Co KG, D-22761 Hamburg, Germany

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