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Coperion opens new test centre dedicated to plastics recycling applications

The inside of a plastics recycling test centre
The interior of Coperion's Recycling Innovation Center Coperion

Coperion has launched its new Recycling Innovation Center. In this test centre for plastics recycling applications, Coperion says that every recycling process step – from material handling and feeding to extrusion, compounding, pelletizing, material postprocessing, and deodorization – can be tested. Extensively equipped recycling systems are available that can be modified in multiple different ways, depending on the specific requirements of the recyclate to be produced.

Coperion says that its new Recycling Innovation Center is a complement to the Herbold Meckesheim Test Center, where the mechanical pretreatment of plastic can be simulated and tested to experience reductions in organic impurities by using Herbold Meckesheim's hot washing system. Herbold Meckesheim has been part of Coperion's Recycling Business Unit since 2022.

The Recycling Innovation Center is located in Niederbiegen near Weingarten, Germany, directly adjacent to Coperion's existing Test Center for Bulk Solids Handling. Along with proprietary research and development projects, the first tests have been performed in which new and sustainable products and recycling processes have been tested. Coperion process engineers can modify the available recycling technologies such that the recompounds are manufactured efficiently while maintaining a consistently high level of product quality. The results achieved can then be effortlessly scaled up to the production level.

New technologies from Coperion that optimize plastics recycling have been integrated into the Recycling Innovation Center's machinery and can be tested there. For example, in material conveying, the FLUIDLIFT ecodry flash drying process is available. Moreover, the MIX-A-LOT bulk solid mixer, which can create premixes including flakes or powders, and the buffer hopper solution using the ARW discharge agitator as well as the Smart Weigh Belt (SWB) feeder are integrated into the system. Coperion has also installed the ZS-B MEGAfeed side feeder into the testing system. The ZS-B MEGAfeed handles flakes and fibres such that they can be fed into a ZSK twin screw extruder in large quantities without energy-intensive compacting.

"The new Recycling Innovation Center shows how important it is for us to advance technology that helps our customers work towards more sustainability solutions and a functioning circular economy. The Recycling Innovation Center offers the ideal environment, both for our own research and development projects as well as for our customers, to master the challenges of plastics recycling," said Frank Lechner, general manager of process technology and research and development at Coperion.

"With this new Recycling Innovation Center, we're in a position where we can simulate the entire plastics recycling process. Our customers can test the complete process, from mechanical pretreatment of plastics in Herbold Meckesheim's Test Center up to compounding and pelletizing, prior to making the investment. As a supplier of entire recycling systems, we are very proud to be able to offer our customers this enormous added value," said Massimo Serapioni, General Manager of Coperion's Recycling Business Unit.

Company info

Niederbieger Straße 9
DE, 88250


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