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07.05.2018 Pneumatic conveying of plastic pellets: less dust and improved energy efficiency

Coperion, Stuttgart, Germany, has developed FLUIDLIFT ecoblue®, a quality- and efficiency-enhancing pneumatic conveying process for plastic pellets. Compared to conventional systems, the process has been designed to generate much less dust and streamers, thereby enhancing the quality of the product and reducing waste. Its lower power consumption also allows plastics manufacturers and compounders to reduce their costs or correspondingly increase their throughput. Under industrial conditions it has been possible to reduce the formation of dust and streamers by between 50% and 98%, at the same time lowering the pressure loss in the conveyor system and hence the necessary energy consumption by from 17% to 35%. Coperion is launching this latest innovation, which is suitable for both new installations as well as for retrofitting, at this week’s NPE 2018, in Orlando, Florida.
The key to significantly reducing both attrition and pressure loss – the pressure difference between product feed and product delivery – is a controlled increase in the relative humidity of the conveying gas. The primary objective of the extensive investigations which were carried out while developing FLUIDLIFT ecoblue® was to prevent any impairment of the end product by minimising the amount of moisture introduced and subsequently reliably removing it. The result of this is that granulate can be conveyed at a very low velocity, so friction between the grains and at the wall of the pipe is substantially lower than in previous designs. Ultimately, this new process ensures a dry, almost dustfree end product without any need for complex additional measures. 
Layout of a typical FLUIDLIFT ecoblue installation and (below) the new process helps minimise dust deposits and pipeline abrasion

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