In the food and non-food liquid PET bottling sector, the needs of manufacturing firms relate to the possibility to have high performance, lines that are perfectly integrated with each other.
SIPA makes available all its experience, to provide solutions capable of giving significant advantages to each individual company.
The characteristics of SINCRO BLOC R: integration and maximum production speed
Let us look at one of the most sought-after solutions: SINCRO BLOC R, the perfect integration of rotary blowing machine, rotary filler and capping machine.
As regards general characteristics, Sincro Bloc is a compact system that guarantees high standards of quality and productivity levels of up to 61,000 bottles/hour.
One of the main advantages of these systems is that it combines the highest production speed and maximum container quality, while maintaining reduced footprint, ease of use, high efficiency and hygiene levels.
These characteristics and advantages make Sincro Bloc one of the best solutions both in terms of initial investment and guaranteed general reduction in TCO.
How was this solution born?
The Sincro Bloc R solution with integrated blowing-filling-capping for various products, both still and sparkling, is created internally at SIPA by combining an Xtra blower and a filling machine, of a type that is determined based on the product to be handled. The Sipa range envisages both electronic and mechanical machines, with gravity or isobaric filling, as well as the weight filling version.
An extremely flexible multi-product system with high hygiene levels, equipped with quick changeover for necks and bottles of different sizes.
The application is suitable for most products: sparkling and still, cold or hot filled, with or without pulps, sensitive products (including preservative-free C.S.D.), as well as those with a high added value that require weight filling.
A system suitable for many areas of application and capable of offering numerous advantages
The innovative characteristics of Sipa blowing and filling machines make the line perfect for many different contexts.
Hygiene and cleaning
Hygiene is one of the main characteristics of this integrated solution: from the preform to the filled and capped bottle, the containers pass through a closed, controlled contamination environment, with sterile air overpressure and Hepa filters.
These characteristics also apply to the transfer module connecting the blower to the filler.
The Sincro Bloc application does not envisage the use of traditional air conveyors, which would raise environmental dust.
Options are available for cleaning of preforms and caps during the supply phase.
Reduction of costs
Sincro Bloc R has been designed to give the maximum reduction of maintenance and size changeover costs, as well as a reduction in running costs thanks to the restriction of water and power consumption, as the rinsing unit is no longer necessary.
The absence of air conveyors also further reduces power consumption.
This integrated blowing-filling solution, together with internal movement of the containers, is particularly suitable to handle latest generation lightweight bottles, resulting in a considerable saving in the cost of the containers.
Operating flexibility and quick changeover
Sincro Bloc R allows a wide range of bottle, neck and cap sizes to be handled. Another plus point for the system is that size changeovers are among the fastest in machines present on the market for this type of application.
Compact size and ergonomics
This configuration requires extremely limited footprint and a single operator to manage the entire system.
Aesthetics and packaging quality
Sincro Bloc R features delicate movement of the containers during all the various phases of the process. It also envisages integration of the control systems to detect any scratches or other marks on the bottles, so as to guarantee high quality in the finished product.
The Sincro Bloc R process phases
This is a list of the main phases in the integrated system:
a) Stretch blow-moulding
- Flexibility: the same machine can produce, with a simple conversion, standard containers and containers for hot filling.
- Higher productivity: 2,550 bottles/hour per cavity.
- Reduced general operating cost (TCO)
- Electrical stretching, great versatility in set-up of the process and easy control of time, speed, acceleration and distance
- Quick and simple rapid mould change system
- Different options for preform hygiene control
- Heating oven with low consumption laminar ventilation
b) Transfer module
The transfer module consists of a series of transfer starwheels with grippers transporting the bottles by the neck up to the filling machine.
- Extreme reliability: absence of blockage.
- Great flexibility: it is possible to handle bottles of all shapes,
- The body guides are no longer necessary, this means a drastic reduction in size changeover times.
- Stainless steel draining machine base with full casing to maintain bottle hygiene
- Overpressure system to separate the air in the dry zone (blower) from that in the wet zone (filler).
- Quick changeover solution that makes it possible, without using tools, to work with different diameter necks
- Cooling of the bottle base, if necessary
- Modular options, with the ability to fill several products on the same filling line.
- In fact, all the versions in the range can be included: isobaric fillers, gravity fillers and hot fillers, both in the mechanical and in the electronic volumetric type, including weight filling.
- The filling machines in the Flextronic range are also available in Xfill version, that is to say using the mixer or carbonator buffer tank as the filler product tank, meaning there is no longer the need for a central tank on the machine.
- Quick and innovative changeover.
- A particularly significant aspect relates to hygiene:
- Controlled contamination cabin with sterile air overpressure, equipped with HEPA filters.
- Transfer module and filler set up for CIP/COP/SIP operations: a guarantee of high standards of hygiene
- Solutions to reduce the contamination of preforms and caps.
- Also available as an option is the configuration with filling area protected by an isolator, to handle sensitive products.
The supply of caps in an integrated system is a particularly delicate phase, due to the risk of blockage caused by cap malformations. To prevent this problem, a variety of redundancy systems have been designed.
Various alternatives are available, according to the operating conditions:
Gravity cap feeder designed to guarantee maximum efficiency, which is state-of-the-art technology. The caps arrive ready oriented at the top part of the elevator and are sent to the pick and place feeder channel without the help of compressed air (clean feeding).
The Twin Hopper consists of two cap hoppers and relevant drop channel to the pick and place. If there is a blockage in the first channel the system automatically switches to the second, allowing the operator to eliminate the cause of the hindrance without stopping capper operations until the machine is empty. If only one type of cap is used, a solution with a single counter-rotating hopper and two drop channels is available.
Dynamic buffer, located between the hopper and the pick and place, consisting of a horizontal turntable, sized so as to contain a sufficient number of oriented caps to guarantee enough accumulation to allow the operator to clear the blockage and empty the machine completely.