Coperion GmbH has opened what it claims is the world's largest compounding test center. The facility in Stuttgart, Germany, replaces the technology company's existing test center and has 20 ZSK extruders for customers to optimize system design for required throughput rate capacity of compounding lines.
The center has a footprint of 2,700 square meters and floor space of 4,500 square meters on three levels, enabling up to 100 customer trials per year. Its design allows installation of trial set-ups "corresponding exactly to actual production conditions," according to Coperion. Quality control tests and analyses are carried out in the analytical laboratory located within the test center.
The facility's 20 ZSK extruders have throughput rates ranging from 10 to 3,000 kilograms per hour. The extruders include Coperion's latest generation machines, the ZSK Mc18 series, for products requiring high energy input, and the ZSK MEGAvolume PLUS machines for high volume throughput.
Other equipment that supports customer tests on the extruders include feedstock metering units and different types of pelletizers.
Using the results of customer trials, Coperion is able to scale up systems to actual production levels. In a facility next to the test center, complete modular design compounding systems can be assembled specifically for commissioning purposes and tested with the customer's product.
Coperion has two other compounding test centers. One is located in Ramsey, N.J. The company also recently opened a test center in Nanjing, China, which is equipped with two STS compounders.