AMUT MINI PRF sorting and pre-washing system improves the quality of recycled PET
AMUT Recycling Division has successfully started up a new MINI PRF at Wellman’s in Johnsonville, South Carolina, with a capacity of 6÷7 tons/h (14,000 lbs/h). The quality of bottles is worsening every day. Some years ago, the contamination of material at the inlet of the washing lines was about 20-25%, today it is more than 40%. Without entering in a detailed analysis of the causes, we would like to just mention a few:
– the growing diffusion of PET as material also used for other liquids, different from beverages;
– the packaging development to make beverages and various bottled liquids more captivating;
– the new conservation and protection techniques for beverages and food, which often clash with recycling exigencies. Think about multi-layer barriers of some bottles, caps safety seals or PET-G thermoformed trays to allow the lamination of the covering film;
– the low efficiency of various selection plants, that are not suitable for the new and more challenging stream quality for technical or economic reasons;
– the non-convenience for MRF and PRF companies to select and reject good PET only because it is contaminated by sleeve labels or other elements necessary for packaging.
The recyclers complaint about the increasing worsening of the quality of material to be treated was the incentive for AMUT Recycling Division to design a “pre-treatment” that completes the wide range of machinery for post-consumer PET valorization and this new high efficiency upfront system to feed PET bottles wash lines is the result. The new technology in Wellman’s installation overcomes the lower quality of Comingle Bales and improves both efficiency and yield of the recycling plants.
The MINI PRF system includes a pre-selection of the bales, to eliminate all of the pollutant materials in a dry phase and have just the clean bottle stream go through the sorting and a pre-washing equipment, without those foreign materials that create inefficiency, more scraps volume for disposal and higher maintenance costs.
The main equipment to perform this task is the AMUT “Elliptical Ballistic Separator”. This low maintenance machine has the function to mechanically select the bottles stream after the Bale Breakers and eliminate the fines and the 2D pollutants such as carton board, paper and packaging films. De-Labeller / Pre-Wash System will prepare the bottles for the following NIR sorters line.
The Pre-Selection and De-Labeler action of the MINI PRF drastically improve the efficiency of the NIRs with better results on the yield of the plant.