Max Kroenert has upgraded its Reco 900 A pilot line by installing an innovative drying module based on NIR (near infra red) technology supplied by AdPhos.

This is said to increase the capacity of existing dryers, permiting increased machine speeds. Alternatively, the length of new high speed coating machines can be reduced compared to conventional formats.

The NIR dryer is suitable for drying water based coatings and adhesives. The new short-wave radiation of the NIR emitter, which is additionally focused by reflectors to the surface, is said to stimulate rapid drying while maintaining low internal coating and web temperatures.

First trials, based on aqueous acrylic dispersions on silicon paper, are said to have been encouraging and shown a capacity increase in the range of 10-30 per cent. Dry coating weights were up to 20g/m². The length of the existing dryer is 12m (4 x 3m flotation sections).

Both companies plan additional trials in the Kroenert Technicum as part of their long term co-operation. Kroenert intends to issue reports periodically on further capacity increases and new applications.