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Forty years after its first sale there, underwater and strand pelletizing systems manufacturer Automatik Plastics Machinery increased its presence in China with the recent opening of a new facility in Shanghai, and also opened a new subsidiary in Malaysia.

Matt Defosse

November 2, 2009

2 Min Read
Automatik Plastics Machinery expands in Asia

Forty years after its first sale there, underwater and strand pelletizing systems manufacturer Automatik Plastics Machinery increased its presence in China with the recent opening of a new facility in Shanghai, and also opened a new subsidiary in Malaysia.
 
Automatik (then Rieter-Automatik; Grossostheim, Germany) delivered its first strand pelletizer to China in 1969, which the company says is still operating. A festive opening ceremony for its new corporate facility in Shanghai was held September 18, joined by some 120 invited guests. In a speech to welcome the guests to the official opening of Automatik Plastics Machinery (Shanghai) Co. Ltd., Roger Stehr, global managing director, underscored the importance of the Asian market for the company, whose local presence in China dates to 1994. The new, larger corporate facility in Shanghai allows the company to centralize its sales and service activities under a single roof, which it says will help it reap synergies and speed customer service.
 

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Roger Stehr (fourth from right) and other guests inaugurate Automatik’s new facility in China.

The company also in October opened a new subsidiary, Automatik Plastics Machinery Sdn Bhd., in Kuala Lumpur. The new subsidiary offers new services including a rotor resharpening center, which Stehr said is a response to growing customer demand in the region for quality resharpening. The company has sold nearly 500 pelletizing systems in Southeast Asia. Automatik now has three full-service resharpening centers in Asia, with the other two being in Shanghai and Taipei.

During last month’s Fakuma trade show, Automatik introduced its EBG system with integrated strand conveyor belt. According to Andreas Weidner, sales manager, who spoke with MPW at that tradeshow, the new EBG strand pelletizing system has been designed for processing highly filled (> 60%) materials that easily crumble. Instead of extrusion into a water bath, the polymer strands are extruded directly onto a plastic or steel conveyor belt, which draws the fragile strands to the pelletizing unit. This controlled drawing of the strands while they are still in a molten state prevents breaks in the strands and enables them to be directly fed into the pelletizer, he said, where they are cut into uniform pellets.

Depending on the polymer, the strands may be cooled with air, water, or a combination of both. The belt speed is adjustable even to very slow draw rates, making the system useful for a broad range of materials from water-sensitive polymers such as EVA and highly filled WPC, to biopolymers and abrasive or elastic polymers. —Matt Defosse

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