Expanded testing possibilities thanks to a successful cooperation

Further improving the processing of tissue products together with SAUERESSIG, Gambini and WEKO.

author: Matthews International GmbH - SAUERESSIG Surfaces

Industry Insight by:

Matthews International GmbH

In the last issue of TissueMAG, the newly installed pilot plant at SAUERESSIG Surfaces was featured – highlighting the benefits of providing customers from the tissue industry with the opportunity to evaluate the performance of tissue products under realistic operating conditions. Now a successful cooperation between three major companies of the industry sets new standards by further driving forward the process of wet embossing. In this cooperation, established between SAUERESSIG Surfaces, Gambini, and WEKO, the specific competencies of the three companies merge to form the innovative process in the tissue segment that is known as wet embossing.

This procedure can be seen in action at the SAUERESSIG Surfaces’ Mönchengladbach site, where the pilot plant is located. During Tissue World 2023 in Düsseldorf, customers were invited to a three-day Open House Event to personally get an impression of the latest technology and to discover new possibilities for their market segment.

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Now expanded: the capabilities of the pilot plant allow for wet embossing

With a production speed of up to 650m/min and equipped with three unwinders, the system impresses with a high degree of efficiency. Embossing technologies, including nested and top-to-top as well as pre-embossing are possible. Gluing of the front and back sheet can be easily implemented thanks to two gluing units. Recently, the patented technology AirMill© developed by Gambini has been added to the pilot plant. AirMill© is a wet embossing technology that allows for an effective, resources-saving process, in which the paper is moistened, so that the pulp fibers are plasticized with hydrogen bond, and then treated with heated embossing rollers provided by SAUERESSIG, resulting in textured tissue paper with a well-defined pattern, more bulk and absorbency, while keeping the same tensile strength – just to name one of the benefits linked to this technology. As it is not only heat but also fluid that comes into play to give the tissue enhanced properties and having the effect of less strength degradation than in a conventional embossing process, water has to be introduced into the converting system.

Therefore, a specialized WEKO unit in form of a non-contact fluid application system has been installed as well. Based on rotating spray discs, an even stream of finest micro-droplets is generated at high speed to give the fabric its individual properties with pinpoint accuracy. In combination with SAUERESSIG Surfaces’ expertise in the field of surface finishings, the heated embossing rollers allow for a wide variety of patterns in an ideal combination of creative designs and optimum product features.

During the Open House Event, customers had the opportunity to take a closer look at the merged technologies of the pilot plant.

In focus: Open House Event during Tissue World Düsseldorf

During the three-day Open House Event, which took place alongside Tissue World 2023 in Düsseldorf, customers had the opportunity to see the SAUERESSIG pilot plant with the newly integrated Gambini AirMill© technology and the WEKO spray application system live and on site, to talk to the experts of the involved companies and to get more information about the benefits this process bears for their respective field of business. Samples were produced, so that the actual look and feel of the output became tangible. Asked about the potential of the testing options, it was widely appreciated that the pilot lane runs under realistic operating conditions, whereas the production speed of up to 650m/min is to be mentioned foremost.
This way, test results can be transferred one-to-one to the production machine. At the same time, the smaller dimensions in width and diameter of the rollers used in the pilot runs result in a cost-effective approach – which in turn makes the testing options even more attractive.

At your disposal: comprehensive testing options for tissue products

These are of course not limited to the three days of the Open House Event only. “We are highly pleased that with our newly expanded pilot plant we can provide a very useful appliance to the tissue industry – states Andreas Greving, Sales Manager Tissue at SAUERESSIG Surfaces – and, thanks to the successful cooperation with our partners, can offer even more interesting testing options to customers from now on”. Together with the team, he is confident that the pilot plant with its extended capabilities will be used actively in the future to develop new prototypes with various technical properties and to test unique designs in the tissue segment – thus refining the production process and ultimately putting into effect all the individual demands that are placed on the final tissue product.

In-house pilot plant now with expanded testing possibilities.



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