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LAB COMPOUNDERS | MACHINERY


Laboratory extruders are an essential element in compound development, saving material and production line time.Peter Mapleston reviews the latest developments


Mixing it up in the lab


The advantages of laboratory-scale compounding are multiple. Sample quantities are many times smaller than would be the case on a production ma- chine so use of materials remains low, which is particularly important with expensive or difficult to obtain materials. For the same reason, the disposal costs for test materials are much lower. And the ongoing production process does not have to be interrupted for tests to be carried out, which saves considerable downtime costs and, of course, associ- ated lost production. The more compact designs and low throughput rates of lab scale equipment also enable test set-ups on laboratory compound- ers to be adapted more quickly and easily. The latest laboratory compounding equipment


meets a range of needs, in terms both of output levels and also the way the compounding process is carried out. Several new pieces of equipment were on display at K2019 in Dusseldorf in October. This article takes a look at some of them. The TwinLab-C 20/40, from Brabender, is the successor to its KETSE 20/40. It has 20mm diam- eter screws with an L:D ratio of 40. ID:OD ratio is 1.6. The new unit is manufactured in materials that can withstand high abrasive forces and corrosion, and can be used for processing compounds at


www.compoundingworld.com


temperatures up to 400°C. It incudes an integrated frequency inverter-controlled motor that runs at speeds of up to 600 or 1200 rpm (there are two versions). The unit boasts four ports on the top and two on the side. It has four electric heating zones and chilled water cooling. Brabender says the TwinLab-C 20/40 can be used in a wide range of applications, from feasibil- ity studies and material developments in research institutes and industry to analysis of material behaviour during a process and developments in the field of recycling. It is also suitable for quality control and will happily take on very small quanti- ties, for example for production of samples or test specimens. It is suitable for compounding samples based on all sorts of thermoplastics, with or without fillers or additives. The TwinLab-C 20/40 can be fitted with a wide


range of die heads and modular screws. The various feed openings can be flexibly equipped with dosing systems, thermocouples, pressure transduc- ers, liquid/gas pumps or a vacuum pump. Measure- ments are carried out using web-based MetaBridge software via a touch screen. The software allows multiple users to access the measurement results from different locations and devices.


� December 2019 | COMPOUNDING WORLD 15


Main image: Buss is scaling down its latest Compeo kneader


design (shown here in a 55mm version) for laboratory compounding duties. First deliveries of the 44mm model are expected in 2020


IMAGE: BUSS


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