SIDEL, a global provider of PET solutions for liquid packaging, is bringing the benefits of new technology to existing equipment owned by beverage producers around the world with its new Line Improvement services.
Part of the company’s recently announced Sidel Services business unit, the Line Improvement team is dedicated to improving existing lines using advanced line analysis tools and methodologies, a range of new innovations and technologies that are easily retrofitted, and engineering experts with years of industry experience.
The team’s solutions can be applied to all Sidel PET complete lines and standalone blowers, fillers and labellers, regardless of configuration or line layout formats. They also work for all beverage products including water, carbonated soft drinks, liquid dairy products, juices, nectars, soft drinks, isotonics, teas and beer.
The team’s results speak for themselves: A Coca-Cola bottler in the US achieved reductions in blowing pressure of up to 50%, while another Coca-Cola bottler in the United Arab Emirates reduced energy by 20%. PepsiCo in Germany achieve a similar energy saving of 19%, while Nestlé Waters achieved a productivity boost of 15% in France and Mineral Quantum in Romania achieved savings of 45%.
“Ensuring older production equipment continues to deliver efficiently with a reduced total cost of ownership is a goal shared by many beverage producers around the world,” said Dag Gronevik, Vice President of Sidel Services. “Often there is a desire to avoid investing in a new line or equipment, and instead getting more from existing production setups. The reasons may vary in each case, from capital expenditure constraints, economic volatility, a need to invest elsewhere, or regulatory considerations. Yet there remains the need to ensure existing installed lines remain efficient and drive down costs.”
This is why Sidel has created its Line Improvement team as one of the six areas within its new Sidel Services business. Line productivity audits by specialised engineers can assess the installed equipment, production layout and surrounding environment to identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies along the line in order to make strategic performance improvements, reduce energy or water consumption and optimise investments. The team can also use local and remote access technology to compile critical data points across the line from process and manufacturing databases in order to become predicative about line conditions. New technologies can then be added to equipment on the line. At Sidel these retrofitted new innovations and technologies are split into options, which are new functionalities to optimise flexibility and costs, and upgrades, which improve performance, safety, functionality, hygiene and energy consumption levels.
“Our line improvement services can help expand the lifecycle of a line by foreseeing issues in advance, improving efficiency and implementing the latest available technologies,” added Dag. “In response to requests from our customers, we constantly strive to reduce the time for return on investment. Currently it usually ranges between just 12-24 months.”
With several options and upgrades released every year, Sidel is constantly investing to bring the benefits of new technology to existing installed equipment. Examples of new technologies for older blowers include speed-up kits for faster output rates, eco-solutions for less electricity usage, stronger spindle chains for a longer life, and air-recovery kits for less air consumption. For fillers examples include stronger valves for longer life, ultra-sonic functionality for less foaming, and product recovery kits for less liquid wastage. For labellers, there are label detectors for less jamming, quick changeover kits for reduced changeover times, label reduction kits for less material costs and automatic splicers for increased daily production.