Addressing the increasingly urgent issue of plastic waste will require a significant increase in recycling and high-quality recyclate in order to transition to a circular economy approach.
A large proportion of plastic waste consists of bottles, which present particular challenges to the recycling industry. The labels are made of a different polymer and color than the bottles, which negatively affects the accuracy of the sorting process, and PET bottles are increasingly packed in “full-body” sleeves.
STADLER is always anticipating the evolution of the recycling industry to meet its changing needs. In order to optimize sorting and ensure good purity rates, in 2019 STADLER developed its Label Remover to remove labels automatically at the beginning of the process. It removes labels from bottles of all types, achieving a quality standard of up to 80 percent of labels removed. It processes a mass flow of up to 9 tonnes per hour – depending on the particle size and material composition. It stands out for the robust construction that is the hallmark of STADLER equipment and is highly resistant to impurities. These features result in excellent durability and consistently high performance throughout its long life cycle.
The STADLER Label Remover features blades made from high-tensile steel. They are fixed to the housing´s inner wall at one end, while at the other end they are attached to the rotor so that they can oscillate freely. The machine’s quality features include the rotor with rotating arms, the quality motor and gearbox from SEW, the maintenance doors with safety lock, and the electrical cabinet with frequency inverter and adjustable rotor speed – from 20 to 60 Hz (80 to 240 rpm).
In the final phase of its development process, the STALER Label Remover has been extensively tested in recycling plants in the United States, Romania, and Germany. The company has integrated feedback from these customers, further tweaking the machine to optimize its performance. The Label Remover is now in operation in a number of plants across the world, where it is achieving excellent results. The PET sorting plant of recycling management company RCS in Werne, Germany, is one of the facilities. Alexander Rimmer, a joint CEO, is extremely satisfied with the machine, as it requires less maintenance and its throughput is geared to that of our plant. With this machine, there is less wear on the knives and the machine is not very susceptible to impurities such as foil or wood. In addition, it does not cause any damage to the PET bottles. With the Label Remover, we can separate the labels from the bottles before sorting, which enables us to guarantee a consistently high level of purity.”