Innovation needs partnership
Kautex has supplied a KEB10 extrusion blow molding machine as a laboratory machine for the new technical research center of the Russia´s leading petrochemical company SIBUR. Research is carried out in close cooperation to develop innovative products.
The key figures of the largest petrochemical company in Russia and Eastern Europe are already more than impressive. Around 27,000 employees at 22 production sites generate annual sales of the equivalent of 6.2 billion euros. SIBUR covers the entire production cycle from gas production, the manufacture of monomers and plastics to synthetic rubbers and plastics processing. The market leader in Russia and Eastern Europe supplies more than 1,400 major customers from wide variety of industrial sectors in around 80 countries worldwide.
Even more impressive is the corporate mission to which the economically highly successful company is committed: ”Our products make a better quality of life accessible to everyone. They transform the world around us and change people‘s lives for the better.“ That‘s what it says on the company‘s website. To achieve this, SIBUR invests a large part of its revenues in scientific research and the development of new knowledge potential in order to reduce the dependence of the Russian economy on natural resources and facilitate the transition to a more sustainable and competitive manufacturing economy.
New research and development centre
An important milestone on the way to achieving this ambitious goal is the new Polyolefins Application and Development Center (PADC), which SIBUR plans to open in the first half of 2019. The new research and development centre is located within the Skolkovo Innovation Centre in the Moscow region and is open for cooperation with all interested parties, says Ilnaz Zaripov, expert for the development of the product portfolio at SIBUR. ”The functionality of the PADC is based on cooperation with customers in order to develop optimal processes for the production of end product samples from polymer granules and to test the raw materials and finished products for compliance with quality standards with the aid of our research equipment.
In its search for a partner for extrusion blow molding technology at the Technical Center, SIBUR has chosen Kautex Maschinenbau. An important and decisive aspect here was once again the good and close cooperation with the Kautex Technikum and the exchange on a technical level. Since the PADC is also planned as a training centre, Ilnaz Zaripov attaches great importance to the technical know-how of external partners. ”If you want to develop advanced solutions, you must not close your eyes. Innovation needs openness and strong partnerships.“
The technical features of the compact KEB series, which is ideal for testing PP and HDPE applications, were also convincing. Kautex supplies a KEB10 extrusion blow molding machine with two blow molds for tests with 1-liter round PP bottles and 10-liter HDPE Eurocans. SIBUR has little experience with HDPE to date, but sees enormous market opportunities in the development of products from this material due to the great demand in Russia and other countries.
“We are very much looking forward to the opening of the SIBUR Technology Center and to passing on our expertise,“ said Hubert Moritz, Kautex Sales Manager for Russia for many years. … more minimize
The highest product quality as the highest priority
Thanks to uncompromising quality in production and service and a high level of innovation, China Wonderland Nursery Goods has developed
into a truly global player. The company relies on Kautex’s know-how.
The name of the company indicates their area of activity fairly clearly. China Wonderland Nursery Goods Co., Ltd manufactures products for babies and small children. Since its establishment in 1993, Wonderland has produced more than 40 million child safety seats and 90 million play yards. Young parents on every continent rely on products from the NUNA and Joie lines, which the company uses for the distribution of their products around the world. Beyond that, Wonderland also produces products for other well-known industrial manufacturers such as Graco.
Quality is the highest priority Renee Wang, Executive Vice President at China Wonderland, is well aware of her special responsibility towards her customers. “Millions of mothers and fathers trust the most valuable things in their lives to our products. Because of that, the highest product quality, safety and innovation are our highest priorities.” Continuously expanding their high standards for quality is one company goal. In addition, several of the products in the Nuna and Joie lines have already won the well-regarded Red Dot award for exceptional design.
Wonderland trusts Kautex
Wonderland has collaborated with Kautex Maschinenbau since 2012. Several KCC30 machines have been reliably used for production without any problems. However the stabile performance of the machines is not the only point that Renee Wang made with this comment about their collaboration with the extrusion blow molding experts from Kautex. “We truly appreciate the many years of experience in blow molding and the broad spectrum of technical support that Kautex provides. Currently, we are collaborating on solutions for reducing the weight and wall thickness without changing the details and properties of the products.” In addition to collaborating in the product development, Kautex technicians provide Wonderland’s engineers with support in the design of molds and on-site start of production. … more minimize
A high-performance partnership
Europe’s leading producer of industrial packaging, AST Kunststoffverarbeitung GmbH, has high requirements when it comes to both the quality and energy efficiency of its machines. For the production of stackable jerrycans, the family-run company relies on the new, all-electric KBB400 from Kautex Maschinenbau.
AST Kunststoffverarbeitung emerged from the company Albrecht Strohmann in 1977. With approximately 160 employees, the family-run company based in Erndtebrück near Cologne records revenue in excess of 100 million euro. As Europe’s leading producer of industrial packaging, AST specializes in the manufacture of plastic jerrycans and drums. The company’s primary focus is on the production of containers with UN hazardous materials accreditation. The main customers for the company’s products are in the chemicals and oil industries, while the pharmaceuticals and food and beverage industries are also important markets.
State-of-the-art production facilities
AST manufactures plastic packaging, stackable jerrycans and drums with volumes ranging from 2 to 220 liters at its locations in Germany, the UK and Belgium. The company relies on high-performance, state-of-the-art machines. “Kautex approached us in 2016 when they were working on the new all-electric KBB400 machines in Bonn,” relates Martin Schack Staffeldt, Managing Director of the AST facility in Wales. “As one of Europe’s most high-tech jerrycan manufacturing machines, the KBB400 meets our high expectations in every technical detail. We also collaborated closely with Kautex to bring our own ideas and requirements to reality.”
In August 2016, the first KBB400 machine, equipped with a Kautex three-layer head for a cost-efficient ReCo process, left the plant in Bonn for delivery to the AST facility in Hoogstraten, Belgium. After a brief stopover on the Kautex stand at the K Trade Fair in Düsseldorf, another KBB400 reached its destination in Wrexham, Wales, to commence production in January 2017.
Smooth commissioning process
“New technologies always bring new challenges,” comments Martin Schack Staffeldt. “But we have to commend Kautex Maschinenbau for the support they provided. The company dealt with the challenges we faced during installation with the utmost efficiency, great expertise, and no fuss.” Since then, the machine has been running in continuous operation with no problems reported. “This confirms that our trust was well-placed and that we made the right decision to go with Kautex as our supplier,” according to the plastics specialist.
“We have also been receiving very positive feedback from our customers when we show them around our plant and point out the new KBB machine. We have already put in orders for additional Kautex machines to meet the ever-growing quality requirements of the industrial packaging market.” …more minimize
Clack Corporation: Made in the USA
As one of the leading names in water treatment systems and blow molding,
the US based Clack Corporation has been relying on quality equipment from Kautex
Maschinenbau for 40 years. Its most recent acquisition is a KBS61 for the production
of water treatment pressure tanks and water treatment brine tanks.
Clack Corporation was founded in Madison, Wisconsin, in 1946 as a small family-owned company. It quickly established itself as a leading manufacturer and supplier of water softener components with the claim: “Made in the USA”. In the 1970s, Richard Clack further expanded the blow molding segment of the business, acquiring the first Kautex machine in 1977. The following two decades saw further orders for a total of 20 machines. “Thanks to the great precision of the Kautex equipment, we have been setting benchmarks in the sector for 40 years,” declares Richard Clack.
The relationship of trust between the two well established companies was further strengthened last year, when Clack Corporation ordered yet another machine from Kautex Maschinenbau. The new KBS61 will be used to increase production of water treatment pressure tanks as well as water treatment brine tanks for the North American market. KBS series models are regarded as the all-rounders among blow molding machines. As well as being highly flexible, they also deliver impressive output rates. “We are extremely pleased to continue our successful partnership with Clack Corporation,” confirms Andreas Lichtenauer, Managing Partner at Kautex. With this new acquisition, Clack products will be able to continue boasting the claim “Made with Kautex” in addition to proclaiming all blow molded water treatment components “Made in the USA”. …more minimize
Lifetime Kayaks for the World
Lifetime Products Inc. is the world‘s leading manufacturer of blow molded polyethylene folding chairs and tables, picnic tables, and home basketball equipment. In 2015, six Kautex machines were ordered for the production of kayaks.
Lifetime uses polyethylene blow molding and metal forming technology to manufacture a variety of consumer and industrial products. The company has one of the largest blow molded plastics facilities in North America. Lifetime Products occupies over 3,000,000 square feet (278,000 m2) at its USA Head- quarters and employs over 2,200 people worldwide.The company started its molding business in rotomolding and in 1995 purchased their first Kautex extrusion blow molding machines. From 1997 to 2001, another 13 machines, built in the US at that time, followed. During the next 15 years, Kautex worked to supply Lifetime with retrofit accumulator heads for legacy machines. Since the acquisition of Emotion Kayaks in 2015, Lifetime has become one of the largest blow molded kayak manufacturer in the world.
Kautex-Maschines for kayak production
Finally in 2015, with Lifetime’s plans to open a new production facility in Mascot, TN, Kautex received an order to build three machines each of the model series KBS241 mono and KBS480, all intended for the production of various Kayak models.
”Kautex is our preferred supplier for blow molding machines,” explains Bob Adams, Vice President Lifetime Products Inc.. ”Their machines are technically superior and better built than competitive machines in the industry. When faced with the challenge of starting up a new facility, we chose to partner with Kautex because of their capacity to design and build multiple machines and to provide technical support, service and training for our personnel.” …more minimize
Toray Industries does research together with Kautex
With the substance polyphenylene sulphide (PPS), the Japanese chemical corporation Toray has developed an ideal material for the production of feed and
exhaust air ducts for modern turbo-charged engines. New materials are being developed in close cooperation with Kautex Maschinenbau.
Toray is a corporation in the chemicals industry with business activities in 26 countries and regions and has about 45,700 employees all over the world. In addition to the main business areas of fibers & textiles as well as plastics & chemicals, Toray is also involved in the development of IT products, carbon fiber composite materials, pharmaceutical and medical products, as well as in the environment & technology areas.
Starting in August 2016, Toray will use a KBS20-SB in the company's own technical center at the factory in Nagoya for testing the production of various 3D ducts using the suction blow molding process. The focus lies on the development of especially heat- and pressure-resistant air ducts made from PPS. Kautex Maschinenbau has provided the Japanese corporation with an extrusion blow molding machine for research and development purposes.
PPS for turbocharger ducts
A current development trend in the car industry is the downsizing of car engines. Turbochargers are used in order to be able to achieve the same performance with fewer cylinders and smaller displacement. However, these require heat-resistant air ducts in the engine. Toray achieved very good results here with polyphenylene sulphide (PPS). This plastic distinguishes itself with especially high and durable heat-resistance up to 220°C. The Kautex machine with high-temperature equipment can process this material without problem.
A development partnership
Jürgen Moitzheim, Sales Director at Kautex Maschinenbau, is looking forward to working with the Japanese plastics manufacturer. ”The latest developments in car engines always create new challenges for car industry suppliers. This is particularly true for the interplay between materials and engine technology. For this reason we like to work very closely with our customers on the development of new solutions.“
This also convinced Toshiteru Nishijama, Manager Automotive Products Business, Resins Global Marketing Dept. at Toray: ”We were looking for a provider who not only produces good machines, offers high process reliability and good service, but who will also support us with their know-how in the R&D field. It became clear quite quickly that we would use a Kautex machine.“ …more minimize
Elmeg shapes its future with Kautex machines
In the international automotive business, the name Elmeg has enjoyed a good reputation for more than 30 years. The Italian automobile supplier has specialized in the blow moulding process and has been the official supplier for suction blow moulded 3D parts since 2013 as they are used, for instance, in turbo-charged engines.
Elmeg purchased its first Kautex machines 10 years ago. Since then the two companies have developed a virtually friendly relationship. Salvatore Giordano, the recently deceased founder of the family company, compared the cooperation of the two companies with the successful cooperation between Ferrari and Michael Schumacher: ”It is very nice to work with Germans when you want to develop new ideas.“
Automotive in the DNA
In the meantime the son of the company founder, Gianluca Giordano, has taken over the management of the company and conducts business in the same manner his father did. Values such as technical competence, willingness to improve one's performance, and especially appreciating one's own values are part of the company mission. And not to forget, a passion for automotive which is passed down from generation to generation in the Giordano family. ”Being fascinated with automobiles is deeply engrained in our company DNA,” says Gianluca Giordano.
The Italian automobile supplier uses a total of four Kautex machines. They include a KB260 for the production of plastic fuel tanks and a Kautex K3D-SB8 suction blow moulding machine which Elmeg loves because of its reliability and flexibility. This compact machine can be used for suction blow moulding and for conventional blow moulding applications and various materials. This allows Elmeg to process different materials alternatingly, such as Hytrel, Zytel, or PA6.6.
Specialists for 3D blow moulded parts
Its specialization in components created using blow moulding has allowed the company (which has an additional factory in Serbia since 2012) to acquire a great wealth of know-how. In contrast to most other competitors, and in addition to doing the engineering, Elmeg also makes its own moulds. This allows them to realize customer wishes quickly, flexibly, and cost-effectively but also to perform short-notice optimizations in the process.
Gianluca Giordano feels that this high level of customer support positions his company very well and adds: ”An important criterion for success is the optimal interplay of know-how, materials, and mechanical engineering. Kautex Maschinenbau is a partner which always supports us actively in the development of new solutions.” In the future Elmeg plans increasing international expansion under the motto ”Shaping together” – especially as expert for 3D suction blow moulded components. …more minimize
Supreme Industries Ltd.
First production line for LPG-composite cylinders commissioned in Halol, India.
The market for composite cylinders is currently growing at a rate of 14 percent per annum, according to the Texan management consultancy Lucintel. It predicts a total market volume of $1,223 billion in 2015. Much of this growth in the market is due to the growing demand for transportation and storage containers for alternative energy sources such as liquid petroleum gas (LPG) and compressed natural gas (CNG). Composite cylinders offer a number of key benefits over traditional metal containers in terms of safety, corrosion and lighter weight.
This is why leading plastics processor Supreme Industries Ltd has been working with Kautex Maschinenbau to open its first full production line for composite LPG cylinders. This turnkey production facility has been designed to achieve annual production of 400,000 type IV composite cylinders in six different sizes. In an interview with K-News, the company's chairman SJ Taparia tells us more about the new facility.
Mr Taparia, what was the main reason behind your decision to become involved in the manufacture of composite gas cylinders?
It's quite simple – this is a real market of the future. Liquid petroleum gas and natural gas are becoming ever more important, particularly in the household installations sector. In India alone we are looking at an increase of 15 million gas cylinders per year, and the majority of existing gas cylinders are still made from metal. The outlook for the international market is the same. There is a growing demand within the automotive sector for more environmentally friendly LPG engines as an alternative to petrol engines.
What made you choose Kautex as your turnkey supplier for the new facility?
Our long-term success has always been based on an absolute commitment to quality, which is why we always work with leading suppliers in each of our different product segments. So it made sense for us to work with Kautex Maschinenbau on our first project involving blow molding technology. We also knew that Kautex have been pioneers in the development of composite cylinders.
What do you think are the other key factors for success in the market?
Along with excellent quality, it is also vital to have highly efficient production processes based on the very latest in machine technology. With this new production line, we are pioneers in the manufacture of composite cylinders.
Is there anything you have learnt from this project that you would like to share with our customers?
When you venture into a new area of business, it is vital to work with a partner who has in-depth knowledge and substantial experience in every area, from design and commissioning through to product optimization and production start-up. It’s also essential to have constant access to experts in the field. In this respect, our partnership with Kautex has been a huge success. …more minimize
Siepe GmbH - KBB proves its worth
Siepe GmbH is proof positive of how traditional firms also know how to benefit from the innovative capacity of the market. Based in Kerpen, Germany, this packaging manufacturer knows the value of investing in state-of-the-art machinery, and it is one of the first Kautex customers to benefit from the energy efficiency and flexibility offered by our new, all-electric KBB
Siepe GmbH has been producing and selling premium quality metal and plastic packaging for over 135 years. 280 employees at three factories in Germany produce a wide range of packaging in all shapes and sizes, including bottles, canisters, lidded containers and barrels. They are used for all kinds of bulk materials such as chemicals, paint, varnish, glue, cleaning materials, mineral oil, foodstuffs, cosmetics and pharmaceutical products. In autumn last year, the company opened its new, high-tech plastic packaging production facility next to its main factory in Kerpen. It is now manufacturing standard and customised consumer packaging for customers in Germany and abroad. As part of this expansion, the company also decided to invest in a state-of-the-art Kautex machine.
A new generation of machinery
When he is selecting suppliers, Josef Siepe, the CEO of this successful family-run company, is looking to establish long-term relationships and work with firms who take a responsible approach to the use of raw materials and resources. So it is hardly surprising that his company is one of the first customers to buy the all-electric Kautex KBB machine. Electric blow molding machinery is much more energy-efficient than hydraulic solutions, and the new lightweight clamp unit means energy consumption can now be reduced even further. The all-electric KBB machines are set up to handle single or multi-layer production and container volumes of between 50 and 5,000 ml. They also offer maximum flexibility in the number of cavities.
A smooth start-up
The KBB60D has now been operating at Siepe GmbH since autumn 2013. It has been configured to run 2 x 4 cavities with an output of 2,400 items per hour and is supplemented by a fully-automatic packing machine which bundles the products directly onto trays, cartons or palettes. Siepe GmbH is currently using the all-electric machine in the production of multi-coloured one-liter round bottles with handles and different neck sizes for household cleaners – at a rate of 57,000 pieces per day. It is planned to start production of 1.5 liter bottles in the near future. …more minimize
MPE s.r.l. - A sustainable partnership
MPE S.r.l has been a top international supplier to the automotive industry for 30 years. One of the key factors in its success is its excellent relationship with our team at Kautex Maschinenbau, along with our blow-molding technology.
MPE are specialists in the development and production of precision components for the global automotive industry. With five production facilities in Italy, the USA, Mexico and Serbia, the company sells almost 200 million vehicle components per year to the world's leading vehicle manufacturers. “It is a very demanding market. Suppliers have to be flexible and set high standards while still offering competitive prices”, explains MPE’s President, Giorgio Battagliotti.
Foto: Giorgio (l.) and Riccardo (r.) Battagliotti, MPE srl
Focus on customer needs
In order to meet these challenges, MPE understands the importance of maintaining close relationships with its international customers. Regular visits and invitations to customer audits and the continuous development of products and strategies are all vital factors in this respect. Mr. Battagliotti describes his company’s philosophy as follows: “Good suppliers never rest on their laurels but are always striving to improve.” This is why MPE believes it is essential to work closely with customers from the very beginning. As an experienced businessman, Battagliotti is well aware that “the acquisition phase is where we can really make an impression. This is where we can set-out our stall, show the customer that meeting their needs is our number one priority and explain how we can work together to find the perfect solution.”
MPE also expects this kind of service from its own suppliers. This is where Kautex Maschinenbau has a major advantage, thanks to its tried-and-tested mix of innovation, reliability and customer focus. MPE currently operates 13 Kautex machines that have already provided many years of reliable service. But sound, reliable engineering is only part of the story. “Of course we expect to see continuous improvements in terms of performance and efficiency”, explains Battagliotti. The bar has already been set very high, because the company has to satisfy leading vehicle manufacturers such as VW, BMW and Daimler “In Kautex, we have a partner who can help us to achieve our goals – making continuous improvements to production processes and developing exciting new products.”
MPE and the Kautex team already enjoy a lively exchange of ideas, and in future this will be even more rapid and effective. MPE is growing in the Nafta region and is now concretly examining the opportunities and potential that the Asian market has to offer. Kautex-Maschinenbau will be there to accompany Giorgio Battagliotti and his team every step of the way. …more minimize