KBA (UK) Ltd. Press Briefing
22 October 2015, News release from KBA (UK) Ltd
KBA-CleanAir technology at CD Cartondruck in Obersulm Air purification for a brilliant performance
For brand manufacturers, folding cartons are an elementary marketing tool. The more diverse the design possibilities, the better. This is one secret of CD Cartondruck's success.
The Obersulm-based print enterprise is unique among German suppliers of packaging to the cosmetics industry in that it operates a sheetfed gravure press -and has no intention of dispensing with this valuable tool. This is why the company invested in an energy-saving air-purification system from KBA CleanAir, the environmental division of KBA-MetalPrint.
Cartondruck, with 380 employee, is biggest employer in the idyllic wine-making region of Obersulm-Willsbach. Customers in the cosmetics industry dominate the company's order books, accounting for over 90 per cent of total sales. Straight-on production is rare. This is partly because batch sizes are steadily dwindling and partly because packaging designs are becoming increasingly complex.
They have to look classy, too. Plenty of colour and coatings, silver, gold, pearlescent effects, that's what counts in the perfumery business and department stores. So alongside litho what could be more logical than deploying gravure - the most stable printing process in the market! In 1995 Cartondruck fired up a KBA Rembrandt 104 two-colour sheetfed gravure press. After the first and second printing units it has two long drying sections through which sheets with a maximum format of 720 x 1040mm (28.35 x 40.94in) and maximum thickness of 0.75mm (30pt) are guided contact-free and thus scratch-free between air streams.
Steffen Schnizer, who runs the company with his brother Marc, is proud of the Rembrandt's immaculate colour solids with metallic and special-effect pigments that form the basis for the complete folding carton or for downstream printing and finishing.
"Classy" printing also means applying inks and coatings - whether gravure or the UV formulas used in offset - that require special treatment to clean the vented air. Cartondruck has been actively engaged in conservation for over two decades, and in-plant environmental management is high on its list of priorities. "Corporate social responsibility and thus environmental protection are an integral part of our management system," says Steffen Schnizer.
The six-man team headed by Wolfgang Hönnige, the maintenance, building technology, energy and environmental manager, knows that nowadays major customers are less concerned with timely delivery and a perfect quality - they consider them a given. What scores points is a complete ecological concept.
Central to Cartondruck's approach is a KBA-CleanAir thermal regenerative air-purification (TRA) plant from KBA-MetalPrint. "We had just completed a project optimising the energy efficiency of our ambient air ventilation and conditioning systems that has enabled us to achieve annual energy savings up in the six-figure kilowatt region solely through modifying airstreams," explains Wolfgang Hönnige. "So we decided to reassess the energy efficiency of our catalytic thermal oxidisation system, which had hitherto functioned perfectly and operated within the specified tolerance limits. It soon became clear that there was ample savings potential here as well."
In the mid-1990s the system was re-engineered to handle a larger volume while at the same time maintaining relatively stable conditions when operating with high average concentrations of airborne solvents -not least because Cartondruck was planning to expand its gravure capabilities.
Today production conditions have changed:print runs are shorter, while below-capacity, changeover and standby times are longer. This places different demands on the air
-purification system, particularly if the vented air from the roller-washing unit is included. With the previous catalytic oxidisation system the vented air had to be forced through a particulate catalyst, and this consumed a lot of energy. Heating the catalytic converter continuously with liquid gas bumped up running costs still further. So in 2009 Cartondruck launched an emissions purification project. In collaboration with another firm, IPTG in Herrenberg, all the basic parameters were calculated under actual production conditions, ie the volumes of air required, the level of contamination and type of solvents in the waste air etc.
Says Hönnige: "Using these parameters we compared a number of different air-purification technologies and came to the conclusion that KBA-CleanAir's thermal regenerative waste-air cleaning system would be ideal for our specifications. Given our high levels of solvent concentration the system only needs to be heated initially from an external energy source. After that the cleaning process is autothermal, ie it requires no additional energy input. The lower flow resistance within the system also means that power consumption can be reduced by over 50 per cent. Our efficiency calculation revealed that annual savings well into the five-digit range are possible."
According to Cartondruck management the new system achieves a high degree of purification, so that contaminant levels in cleaned gas are well within the limits stipulated by German regulations of 2002 on airborne emissions and the current Ordinance on the Limitation of Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds from the Use of Organic Solvents in Certain Installations. Wolfgang Hönnige says the company has achieved a reduction of some 254 tonnes (279.4 US tons) in annual carbon emissions by reducing the consumption of primary energy.
For further information please email KBA (UK) Ltd