Lincoln, R.I.-based Orbetron LLC has improved all of its disc feeders and introduced a new material containment system.
Later this year, the company also plans to launch single-/twin-screw micro feeders for powder and pellet applications and upgrade the controls for volumetric and gravimetric applications.
Founded in 2011 to fill a void in the low-rate bulk material market, Orbetron manufactures dry and liquid feeding and blending systems for the plastics, pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, labs, chemical and food industries.
Plastic applications for the equipment include injection molding, blow molding extrusion, micromolding, compounding and manufacturing films, sheet, pipe, tubing, building products, and wire and cable.
In recent developments, Orbetron has improved all four of its disc feeders for injection molders and extruders, according to President Roger Hultquist. The changes include additional material agitation, new designs for lower rates and the ability to integrate with other systems.
The technology is new to the plastics industry but has been used in the pharmaceutical industry for some time for feeding drug-related materials, Hultquist said in an email.
The product line includes the OD 50 series, OD 100 series, OD 150 series and the OD 200 series.
"Our 50 series feeders is our smallest feeder to date," Hultquist said. "This design offers a 50-millimeter- (2-inch) in-diameter feeding disc."
The 50 series is designed for low-rate feeding applications of 0.002-0.22 pounds per hour (1 gram per hour to 100 grams per hour base).
The 100 series has a 100-millimeter (4-inch) diameter feeding disc, while the 150 series has a 150-millimeter (6-inch) diameter feeding disc and the 200 series has 200 millimeters (8 inches). These feeding discs handle low-rate applications of 0.01-200 pounds per hour (0.005-90 kilograms per hour.); 0.6-500 pounds per hour (0.3-226 kilograms per hour); and 1-800 pounds per hour (0.5-362 kilograms per hour), respectively.
Last year, Orbetron introduced the Ezi-Dock containment system for powder materials and integrated the technology into the disc feeders.
More recently, the company integrated Ezi-Dock into its single- and twin-screw lab feeders.
The company offers two Ezi-Dock options: one for disposable bags for smaller amounts of material and the other for bottles for larger volumes. The bottles can be cleaned and reused.
The Ezi-Dock lines offer "100 percent containment" for clean room applications where the material is filled into the bags or bottles, sealed and taken to the disc feeder for release into injection molding or extrusion processes, Hultquist said.
"One hundred percent containment means no material spillage. It eliminates the customer's hand-filling feed hoppers, so there's no spillage online," Hultquist said.
The Ezi -Dock bag transfer system is easy to use, he added. An adapter is used to fit the 4-inch valve to Orbetron's different size disc and auger feeders.
Orbetron also partners with industry OEMs to design feeding equipment for private labels, resale and specific applications.