Container Glass: View on HEC Coating Situation
The current container glass coating market is highly challenging with production in glass factories at utmost capacity and new factories being added, especially for the pharmaceutical glass items. Feve* reports that: “Glass packaging is the top choice for environmentally conscious consumers, ….
Half of consumers buying more products in glass packaging than in 2016, and 9 in 10 would recommend glass as the best packaging Purchasing decisions increasingly driven by efficiency, reliability and environmental considerations…
Topically the condition on the hot end coating market caused by lack of Tin and production capacities are leading to serious issues. Instead of suffering hardship of this market, another option is to improve the efficiency of the product in use.
Container Glass Coating - Invisible but important
Hot and cold end container glass coating is indispensable to guarantee bottle lifetime. As standard process in container glass factories worldwide the procedure of Hot End Coating (HEC, Monobutyl-Tin-Trichloride) is used in most of glass factories worldwide. The purpose of this first coating, applied right after the forming phase at approx. 450-650°C is to saturate the surface bonds on the new glass bottles and also to prepare the surface for the next step, the Cold end coating (CEC).
The optimized combination of hot-end and cold-end coating results in added strength, weight reduction and improvement of transport and filling properties, providing an ongoing, visual impression. These advantages lead to indispensability for one waybottles, and also to higher circulation rates for multi-trip bottles. Nowadays, it is the glass customers having an eye on all production steps in glass making and this also concerns the HEC and CEC, if it is necessary and above all, how much and if there is potential for saving.
Turning away from “more is better” - Considerable savings
In many glass factories, the philosophy “more is better” still rules and potential for reduction is not exploited. However, as environmental awareness gains an important role in all levels of glass making, also this tiny factor needs to be looked at, within requirements to savings in all production processes even down into the manufacture of coating products and their ingredients.
Many operators already check and supervise the dosing of the coating within the applying hoods, but it is not yet in the focus of producers and quality managers, that even considerable savings can be achieved. The application process plays an important role in optimization. Correct dosing and expertly adjusted and debugged systems can contribute to a not negligible savings potential, both in coating products but also in operating cost, having a positive impact on the health of the operating staff at the same time.
Quality audits have shown that the potential of saving can achieve up to 30 %(!) at existing systems. In some cases a replacement of elder systems is unavoidable.
GlassChemConsult equipment for application of coating ensures enhancement of the glass surface in combination with optimized spray process and environmental protection.
Various high-performance systems / equipment that is continuously enhanced in conjunction with renowned manufacturers is incorporated in the special design of the GlassChem HECSt (HECSt = Hot End Coating Station) that permit rapid and simple implementation of cleaning and adjustment work.
As the hood is fabricated from high-alloy steel, largely dusty residues form in the hood. Thanks to integrated air-cooling the optimum hood temperature can be set. The switch cabinet is located separately and is furnished with an approximately 10m long cable to the hood. This way the electrical supply unit can be positioned in a quiet, clean production zone. The proven pump is employed in many glass smelters. Operator control is performed via a touch panel and is equipped with alarm functions.
Now also taking into consideration that the glass coatings market is tight and cost saving is an obligation in all factories, savings in this segment can play an important role.
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