Rinco Ultrasonics granted U.S. patent for ultrasonic film sealing of flexible packaging
Rinco Ultrasonics, a manufacturer of ultrasonic welding equipment, has recently been awarded a U.S. patent for its PPS0145 film sealing technology for ultrasonic film sealing of flexible packaging. The patent was granted to Gordon Hull, U.S. managing director of Rinco Ultrasonics. “Our patented process shatters the preconceived notion that ultrasonic seals must be unattractive, narrow, and straight,” said William Aurand, sales manager for Rinco, in the news release.
“Further, the new technology significantly opens the processing window for the ultrasonic sealing process.” Rinco said it plans to strengthen its position in flexible packaging with this film sealing technology by simplifying the use of ultrasonic sealing and creating more aesthetically pleasing seals. The company’s new FPA series ultrasonic pouch sealing systems incorporate the patented technology for flexible packaging of dry and liquid foods, personal care items and electronics. They have been designed to replace existing heat sealing equipment on liquid filled pouch form-fill-seal (FFS) machinery or pre-made pouch systems.
Due to the nature of traditional ultrasonic sealing processes, the surface area of the bond must be kept to a minimum to focus the frictional forces that are applied. This results in today’s very narrow and straight conventional ultrasonic seals throughout the packaging industry. Rinco’s interlocking film sealing technology permits seal patterns with a greater surface area. The interlocking design creates a wide lattice of extremely focused lines of force within the seal area. This creates seals over a much greater overall surface area, while still focusing the initial contact point as required by the process.
The company said that one key benefit of the new technology is the ability to enhance aesthetics. Seals from 2-mm to 25-mm are now achievable compared to 1-mm to 2-mm previously. With the interlocking design and robust equipment, Rinco can offer wider ultrasonic seals. The wider seal eliminates the need for follow-up heat sealing, thus saving time and cost. In addition, the technology allows production of contour-shaped seals, as opposed to straight line seals. These seals can take almost any configuration, offering end users a range of branding options to differentiate their products, according to Aurand.
To further enhance the aesthetics of the bond, Rinco has recently developed the ability to emboss a design or logo into the seal area. Designs and logos are achieved by simply relieving an area of the seal pattern. The company said that this concept enhances the seal’s appearance, while at the same time, providing a benefit to the sealing process. The relieved section of the tool face reduces the overall bond surface area, allowing for reduced clamp force and shorter cycles.
An added benefit of the patented sealing process is a more predictable melt, beginning with the focal lattice of force previously described and ending with a completely sealed surface. Depending upon the film used, Rinco has determined that its interlocking pattern can provide a 20% stronger bond than conventional ultrasonic seals. In addition, the PPS technology provides users the capability to vary the seal strength by simply making seal parameter adjustments.
Rinco manufactures the FPA series ultrasonic pouch sealing system at its Danbury, CT facility.