NPE '18: BASF turning to technology, digital adjustments for PU growth

Source: ICIS News


ORLANDO (ICIS)--With technological and digital advancement becoming the new normal for growth, companies like BASF are showcasing their development of plastics technology, including devices for dispensing polyurethane (PU) foam, a representative from the company said on Tuesday.

"In this case, which is not typical for BASF, we're selling the chemicals and the dispensing equipment," BASF technical manager Mike Krupa said on the sidelines of this year's National Plastics Exposition (NPE). "That's how you grow."

The dispensing gun, labelled ULTRAMIX, is used in conjunction with BASF's brand of Autofroth PU foam. Krupa noted its modular design allows for a user to take apart the device, switch out cylinders of foam and reassemble it.

"You'll be back up and running within a couple of minutes," he said. "It reduces the amount of downtime for the customer, and that's the real purpose for it."

Photo by David Haydon

Aside from the modular design, the gun has an attachable digital display, which gives the user better reading to reduce error.

"If, for some reason, it's off ratio, then it will alarm, and actually stop the machine so you don't make bad parts." he said. "With this, you’re in business for probably around $15,000, compared to over $200,000 for some of the bigger machines."

The gun is still in a prototype testing phase, but Krupa said customers have given it a favourable response thus far.

The final version is expected to come out later this year.

Sponsored by the Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), NPE2018: The Plastics Show takes place on 7-11 May in Orlando, Florida.