Plastic, among glass, paper and aluminum, is one of the most common materials when it comes to recycling. Hammerl, Gemmrigheim, Germany, proves how profitable it can be to recycle polyethylene (PE) plastic film.
The company is producing its own PE granulate from plastic film scrap by using modern size-reduction equipment. The granulate is then used in the production of new PE construction films, dimpled sheets and vapor barrier sheets.
The German company has 50 years of experience as a plastic processor and says its success was made possible by “constantly pushing new and innovative ideas.”
One of these ideas was investing in Ilsfeld, Germany-based Weima’s Spider 1500 H shredder, which processes the PE regrind into new construction film.
Bales of plastic film scrap are brought to Hammerl’s facility. The bales are fed into Weima’s shredder, which operates more than 16 hours per day and reduces the material to a definite size, the company says. In addition, the heavy-duty shredder is equipped with a 90-kilowatt hydraulic drive.
Then a belt conveyor with a metal detector ensures that the shredded material does not contain pieces of metal scrap. By doing this, more than 15 tons of filaments can be filtered per year. After that, the preshredded plastic film scrap reaches a centrifuge that cleans the material and separates it from paper dust. Foreign materials are extracted during this step.
The material is then carried through an Erema extruding system, where plastic fiber is produced by compressing, melting and filtering the material, which is then cut into granules and then made into PE film.
As a certified recycler of plastic scrap, Hammerl produces more than 2,200 tons of recycled PE film per year. More than 96 percent of the incoming plastic film scrap can be recycled and reused through this process, the company says.