The utilization and direct use of recycled materials offer plastic pipe manufacturers an advantage in terms of cost savings. However, using raw materials would not be possible without proper equipment and process, in order to produce quality grade pipe, adhering to irrigation standards regarding its mechanical as well as chemical properties.
By using the right additives, pipe manufacturers can improve the quality and change the properties of recycled raw materials, to a level reaching that of virgin raw materials. Such examples would be the use of polymer stabilizers, compatibilizers and reactive additives, that protect against polymer degradation and ensure compatibility between blends of differing plastic scrap.
Using lower cost materials
A clear benefit of using recycled materials for pipe production, is the reduction of raw materials cost. This is possible because recycled or off spec material always comes at a lower price compared to virgin raw materials. For example:
- Self made scrap: Every industrial production is associated with the production of scrap product. In the case of plastic pipe manufacturing process, reusing scrap material and bringing it back into the process, is a direct way of reducing material cost.
- Purchased recycled materials: Recycled or re-palletized materials are available at a fraction of the cost of virgin materials. The 3 layer cross head allows the use of such materials in the pipe production process, as another way of reducing materials cost.
- Off spec / off grade materials: The plastics virgin raw materials industry regularly produces off-spec or off-grade plastics, as part of their unavoidable scrap production. Such lower grade plastic is sold at a much lower cost compared to virgin material, and can be readily put to use in plastic pipe manufacturing process when using 3 layer technology.
3 Layer technology
DRTS offers the 3 layer cross head, a plastic pipe extruder attachment that allows manufacturers to decrease raw materials cost by using lower cost or recycled materials without jeopardizing the integrity and functionality of the produced pipe.
The 3 layer cross head produces pipe in which the main volume of raw material used is made of lower cost materials, while the inner or outer layers are produced using virgin raw material, in different configurations, for example:
- Virgin raw material used for the inner and outer layers, making up for 20% of the pipe. The remaining inner layer in between the two layers, accounting for 80% of the overall pipe material is made using lower cost raw materials.
- Virgin raw material used for just the inner layer, making up for 10% of the pipe, with lower cost raw materials used to make the remaining outer layer accounting for 90% of the overall pipe.
Ease of integration
The 3 layer cross head can also work with the addition of colored lines on the outer pipe layer, allowing for product categorization, quick visual identification and market differentiation. Multiple configurations are available for handling various sizes and types of plastic pipe, making the 3 layer cross head easy to integrate or retrofit in existing extruder machines, ensuring ongoing cost savings on raw materials for every minute of operation during the plastic pipe manufacturing process.
The 3 layer cross head’s operation (or that of any production line) is complimented by the gravimetric feeder system, that assures steady and continuous feeding of the extruder at the optimal plastics supply rate. This is especially important when using recycled materials in the combination of virgin materials. The goal is to control the precise thickness of each layer in order to assure proper pipe structure. This results in reliable and precise production, every meter of pipe being within specification and having the same material consistency throughout the production process despite the use of recycled or off-spec materials.
Whether you are already operating, or even considering a pipe production facility, DRTS can support you in optimizing or setting up your plastic pipe manufacturing process. Contact a DRTS representative to discover solutions tailored to your needs and budget, get free consultation and a price quote.
DRTS at The K Show 2019
Don’t forget to visit DRTS at the K Show!
Visit our booth: Hall 12 | Stand 12F11
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