Abbott Furnace Company designs and manufactures drying ovens for the exact belt speed, temperature, and airflow that allows for quick and uniform drying.
Before drying, molded pulp pieces have a 3:1 to a 4:1 water-to-fiber ratio. They must reach a final moisture content of 6 to 8 percent, accomplished with a trip through a drying oven.
Drying ovens typically have a continuous belt that carries pieces through the heating chamber and operates in the 300 to 500°F temperature range. Drying can take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour or more, depending on things like water content, thickness, temperature, and part geometry.
The ability to control timing (i.e., travel speed), temperatures, atmospheric moisture levels, and airflow is critical in oven design. It is also important that these factors can be adjusted easily to accommodate a variety of shapes, sizes, of molded pulp products.
Drying Oven features that increase throughput and save energy costs
One of the biggest goals for molded pulp manufacturing is to achieve the proper final moisture level in as little time as possible, using as little energy as possible (or even reducing energy requirements). An effective way to do this is by measuring the moisture content of the air in the oven. With this data, it is possible to vary the exhaust volume and reduce fresh air intake, which results in a more efficient process.
Data collection capabilities help spot production trends over time and effectively track costs, throughput, and energy use. You can also use this data to make fine adjustments to your manufacturing process.
Remote connectivity of the system to Wi-Fi or ethernet means real-time alerts notify employees when operating parameters are out of range or change suddenly.
This kind of process monitoring and control increases throughput and reduces the cost of ownership of your oven. That, in turn, lowers energy and production costs and increases ROI.
Features of drying ovens
- Belt widths of 48 to 72 inches/li>
- Top-down and bottom-up airflow
- Adjustable height top plenum for various part heights
- 6” walls for superior insulation and reduced equipment surface temperatures
- Variable speed exhaust vents
- PLC controls with remote connectivity
- NFPA-86 compliant gas heating system
- Large access doors for ease of maintenance
- Variable speed drives
- Humidity and other process monitoring sensors
Molded pulp (molded fiber) is a versatile multi-tasker in the world of packaging materials. Manufacturers across industries use it to protect many types of products.
There’s more than one way to prepare fibrous raw materials for use in molded pulp products. This blog takes a closer look at the processes
- eBook: A Guide to Molded Pulp Packaging and Manufacturing