New Mobility Enhancer for Beverage Can
On any can manufacturing plant, maximum production levels of cans are normally restricted by the speed that the decorators can process cans. One of the key issues is the coefficient of friction of the can surface. The can manufacturing process by its nature results in a can surface of variable levels of roughness. This causes significant issues with the can decorators in that the rougher the can surface the slower the decorator has to run. It is run slowly to prevent cans jamming in the machinery. Thus the level of can production is to a large extent governed by can surface condition.
It is known that problems with can surface condition can be improved by coating the can surface with a “mobility enhancer” during the production process. This mobility enhancer reduces the can surface coefficient of friction. More importantly, this ensures that all the cans going through the process have a similar friction coefficient. This enables decorators to be run consistently at an optimal speed. Can production rates are therefore optimised.
Can mobility enhancement technology has been used for a long time. However, current technology has reached the limits of its ability to reduce can surface friction. Thus, new technology is required to enable a further increase in can decorator speeds.
Natech has recently developed a polymer-based product which reduces the “roughness” of the can surface and allows the temperature of the dry off oven to be reduced due to its water shedding abilities.