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June 1, 2000

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Auxiliary Equipment Maker To Debut New Dryer Technology, Feeders,Blenders And More At NPE

1 NPE logo 4/cAuxiliary Equipment Maker To Debut New Dryer Technology, Feeders, BlendersAnd More At NPE

Novatec will be introducing a variety of new products at NPE (Booth N-5408 & S-754). Among these are a desiccant-free dryer, a 'micro' auger feeder, a small gravimetric blender and a regenerative vacuum pneumatic conveying pump. All prices listed for these products are introductory and will be effective through NPE week.

Desiccant-free dryer In 1991, the U.S. Navy started using a drying technology that uses compressed air and a type of adsorption media that is proprietary. They use this technology on surface ships and submarines for a variety of applications.

Novatec has applied that technology to its new patent-pending NovaDrier resin dryer. According to Jack Doub, Novatec's Executive Vice President, the technology needed to be expanded so it could dry larger quantities of air. He says that the new dryer provides a constant low dew point.

"Air from the drying media is -40 F or lower so resin is dried at a consistently higher quality than conventional dryers with dew points above zero. This consistency eliminates the waste from ruined batches that is associated with spikes or deviations in drying temperatures," says Doub. In addition, the technology is said to constantly purge volatiles from the process.

The dryer does not use a process motor, regeneration motor or regeneration heater, and valves and cooling coils are not needed for high-temperature applications. And because there are no moving parts, the only maintenance required is a periodic filter change.

The unit works by taking any type of compressed air (no need for refrigerated or desiccated air ) in through two filters. This air then flows through a device that contains the adsorption media, through a regulator and into a heater where it mixes with the return air from the drying hopper. Moisture from the process is blown off and expelled via a relief valve.

There are six units in the series with capacities ranging from 5 to 120 lb/hr. Novatec says the technology is not well-suited to larger-capacity drying applications. The dryer is made of stainless steel and its hoppers are insulated for better temperature control and to reduce the amount of heat released to the atmosphere.

Novatec also claims significant energy savings for the NovaDrier, as compared to desiccant type dryers. The company did a total energy usage comparison with its MD Series desiccant dryers. On the smallest unit, the annual savings, at $0.07/kw hr was $355. On the largest it was $5139. These figures are for dryers operating 24/7.

Novatec says the unit uses only half the compressed air required by competitive compressed air dryers on the market. The smallest NovaDrier uses 1.2 standard cu ft/min of compressed air while the largest uses 28 standard cu ft/min.

Prices for the NovaDrier start at $3450. Novatec is offering a 3-yr warranty on the NovaDrier; the company notes that in the nine years since the Navy started using this technology, it has not had to replace the adsorption media. 

Auger feeder The Micro auger feeder is a volumetric device designed for additive feed rates of 7.5 lb/hr or less. The unit measures 15. 5 in. long by 14 in. high and can be mounted on the throat of small (15-30-ton) injection molders or extruders. The feeder has an 'off-set' mounting pedestal.

Programmable controls allow for variable screw speeds from 0 to 125 rpm. An encoder on the back of the motor transfers 'voltage of the motor' into rpm so processors don't have to do it themselves.

The 6-lb capacity feed hopper and the unit's drive motor are held in place with magnetic contacts and locator pins that allow for easy disassembly and clean-out. The auger is attached to the drive motor with a flexible coupling so it won't break when the motor is pulled off the frame.

Other standard features include a sight glass in the throat casting; a sight glass in the feed hopper; a 'hand-fill' lid; choice of 1/4-, 3/8- or 3/4-in. auger; a slide gate drain and a slide gate under the auger for sampling. Price is $2235.

Gravimetric blender The NovaBlend 100 is a four-component 'micro' blender that complements the company's NovaBlend 600 and 1200 blenders. Footprint is 7 x 7 in. and unit stands 26 in. high.

The 100 can blend from two to four components (two major ingredients with one or two additives) at rates up to 100 lb/hr. Each component is weighed and the blender displays the information on the control panel readout. It also maintains data so the history of material usage can be stored and viewed.

Each material discharges in pre-set amounts into a weigh hopper untilthe desired batch weight is reached. Dualload cells under the weigh hopper are said to provide accuracy of 0.1%.All materials are then dischargedinto a mixing chamber for pre-set, timed or continuous mixing. A clear door onthe side of the unit allows access to the weigh hopper and mixing chamber.

This blender is controlled via the new MCB-650 controller (see below). Price is $6850. 

Blender controller The MCB-650 gravimetric blender controller is designed to automatically adjust the amount of additives in each batch to ensure precise metering based on the amount of virgin material loaded into the mix. It recomputes the values for color and/or other additives based on the actual weight of the virgin/regrind materials. The recomputed value is said to be accurate to ±0.1% and the control can display material measurements in 0.002-lb increments.

According to Novatec, this differs from other systems that weigh the entire batch at the end of the mixing process. In other words, the control accounts for each component rather than using an average.

This controller is available on NovaBlend 100, 600 and 1200 gravimetric blenders, as well as on BBS weigh blenders. It can handle sequential metering of up to four materials for NovaBlend units and up to eight materials for BBS Series blenders.

The MVB-650 allows for keypad entry of materials components by percentage. These are displayed along with the actual weight of each material. Material usage is accumulated, stored and available for viewing. An optional alpha keypad allows recipe storage for more than 1000 recipes by name or number.

Pneumatic conveying pump Novatec has added a 6.2 hp, two-stage regenerative vacuum power unit to its line ofpneumatic conveying pumps. It is said to be an energy-efficient, space-savingalternative to positive displacement pumps and is capable of conveyingup to 2000 lb/hr (at 200 ft cumulativedistance).

Unit measures 27 x 32 x 29 in., including the motor starter mounted tothe frame, so the overall footprint is less than 3 ft. Two people can easily moveit. In addition, there are no drive beltsor lubrication points so maintenanceis reduced.

The unit includes a return-air protective cartridge filter, vacuum/pressure gage and an idle bypass circuit to minimize wear on the vacuum pump and motor starter.

It can be used in standard conveying systems or purge systems. A dry-air convey bypass valve can be added. Unit is also said to be quiet, operating with noise emissions below 80 db with no sound enclosure. Price is $3495, which is said to be $1000 less than positive displacement pumps. 

Novatec Inc.
Baltimore, MD 

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