Visitors to IFAT 2018 Enthralled by Working Magnetic Separators
An Eddy Current Separator was violently expelling non-ferrous metals from plastic waste on one side of the stand, whilst large chunks of fragmented stainless steel were being separated by the SSSCon the other. ‘Seeing Is Believing’ was very much the basis of the Bunting and Master Magnets stand at IFAT 2018 (14th – 18th May 2018).
“We wanted to showcase our metal separation technology,” explained Dave Hills, Bunting’s Head of Sales, “and that meant having production-sized equipment operating on the stand. The positive reaction of visitors highlighted the importance of being able to show metal being separated.”
IFAT is the first major waste and recycling exhibition of 2018 in Europe, featuring 3,305 exhibitors and over 141,000 visitors. Key topics discussed during the week-long show included the filtering of microplastics; more effective recycling of plastics; and the digital transformation of the entire industry.
“Effective metal separation is vital for the successful recycling and reuse of many secondary materials,” said Dave. “As a specialist in Magnetic Separation, we believed that the IFAT show provided the perfect platform to show recycling companies what is possible. The show proved to be exceptionally successful and we are now in discussion with companies all over the world.”
Following the IFAT exhibition, many companies who visited the stand are sending samples to the Master Magnets laboratory in the UK for controlled tests to confirm the separation capability of both the Eddy Current Separator and Stainless Steel Magnetic Separator.
“There was a lot of interest in the Stainless Steel Magnetic Separator. Stainless steel is a problematic material and, due to it’s hardness, can cause real problems in granulators and shredders. Visitors were often surprised to see large fragmented stainless steel being attracted and separated. It has generated a huge amount of interest and there is a lot of work to do.”
For further information on the Magnetic Separation equipment on display at IFAT, please contact Dave Hills on:
“Orders and interest for our [Bunting & Master Magnets] recycling equipment has never been stronger,” reported Dave Hills, Bunting’s Head of Sales.
IFAT is the first major waste and recycling exhibition of 2018 in Europe and is anticipated to be very well attended with a projected 140,000 visitors.
“Since the acquisition of Master Magnets [January 2017] we now have a total metal separation portfolio,” said Hills. “On our stand at IFAT, we will be demonstrating how to successfully separate large stainless steel and recover small non-ferrous metals. We want visitors to see rather than be told what separation is possible.”
At the IFAT exhibition is also looking to meet potential distributors for the Bunting & Master Magnets magnetic separation range of equipment.
For further information on the Magnetic Separation equipment on display at IFAT or to express interest in representing Bunting and Master Magnets in Germany or any other country, please contact Dave Hills on:
Between the 5th and 7th July 2018, a group of Dads, whose families have been supported by Tŷ Hafan, will be aiming to climb and travel between five UK mountains in a maximum of 55 hours. The five mountains are Ben Nevis (highest in the UK), Scafell Pike (highest in England), Snowdon (highest in Wales), Cadair Idris and Pen-y-Fan (2nd and 3rd highest in Wales).
Tŷ Hafan is one of the UK’s leading paediatric palliative care charities and offers care to children and support for their families, throughout Wales.
“It is a crazy challenge and we wanted to show our support for such an amazing charity,” explained Simon Ayling, Bunting’s Managing Director.
Bunting became involved when Paul Fears, their Press Office and Photographer, announced that he was taking on the #5in55 challenge. Paul and his family have received many years of support from Tŷ Hafan since his eldest son, Greg, was diagnosed with a life-limiting condition.
“Paul talked to us about the challenge and explained that this group of Dads just wanted to do something to promote Tŷ Hafan and thank the staff and care team” said Simon. “Walking up five mountains in 55 hours was considered to be tough enough to be a real challenge, but is nothing compared to the daily challenges faced by the families and children who are supported by Tŷ Hafan. Immediately, we wanted to support them and asked to sponsor the climb to the top of the UK’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis.”
The #5in55 team are thrilled to have Bunting as a headline sponsor and donations for the Ty Hafan #5in55 Mountain Challenge can be made on their Just Giving site.
Testing Magnetic Separators in Food Processing Plants
In one week, we have conducted Magnetic Separation Audits at three separate UK food processing plants. The audits form part of the quality management system of each company and are used for both internal and external food quality and safety assessments.
A Magnetic Separation Audit involves the physical testing and inspection of all Magnetic Separators.
Physically Testing the Magnetic Strength
The first part of the inspection assesses the magnetic strength. This involves using a Pull Test Kit which includes a spring balance and various sizes and shapes of magnetically susceptible steel test pieces. A Gauss Meter is not used as the readings can be inaccurate and variable. The physical test involves placing the steel test piece on the surface of the magnet (on a magnetic pole) and measuring the amount of force (in kgs) that is needed to remove the item from the surface of the magnet. This is then repeated and an average reading recorded.
Visually Assessing the Magnet
The second set of tests involve the visual inspection of the Magnetic Separators and we are checking for:
The amount of metal contamination captured by the Magnet;
Signs of damage or wear;
Fixings and any related safety issues (e.g. missing restraining nuts);
Cleaning regimes and ease of cleaning;
In the three recent audits there were a number of findings including:
Magnetic Separators were in locations where it was extremely difficult to clean and may be considered a safety risk;
Welds on a Magnetic Separator had been eaten away by the acidic product resulting in liquid penetrating the Tube Magnet. This caused the magnets to expand within the stainless steel casing and also destroyed the magnetic field;
The magnetic strength of some Magnetic Separators (especially those that had been installed for some time) was very poor and the level of separation would be minimal;
In some locations, Magnetic Separators had been removed from the process but were still registered in the system;
The positioning of some Magnetic Separators could be changed to improve the metal separation performance;
Following the Magnetic Separation Audit, a full report, with all the test results, is written and submitted with recommendations. This then forms part of the food processing company’s internal quality audit system and is refereed to when there are inspections from external third parties and customers. Commonly the audit is repeated on a annual basis using the same test parameters.
Similar audits are also undertaken in other industries including Plastics Production and Recycling. An annual health check ensures that the Magnetic Separators are performing to their maximum potential and achieving the separation goals for which they were originally installed.
For more information on the issue of Metal Contamination and Metal Separation, or to arrange a free onsite survey and audit of a particular plant or process, please contact the Bunting team on:
The Polymer Training and Innovation Centre (PITC) provides training for engineers working with plastics and has an extensive range of working equipment including moulding machines, pneumatic conveying systems, and magnetic separators.
At Technivation, there were talks from machinery manufacturers and also an industry update from the British Plastics Federation. BPF Membership Services Director, Stephen Hunt, highlighted a change in the awareness and public perception of plastics since the airing of the BBC Blue Planet II series at the end of 2017. The BPF have been working hard to clarify misconceptions about plastics, highlighting that plastic is vital in the manufacture of so many products including cars, medical equipment, and IT. They are presently working closely with the UK Government on the proposed tax for single use plastics, which closes on 18th May 2018.
As Stephen Hunt explained, the plastics sector is the 8th largest exporting industry in the UK with a turnover of £25.5 billion. The sector is also the 2nd largest employer in the manufacturing industry. He also highlighted how waste from the USA and European Union combined only contributes 2% to the amount of plastic waste found in our oceans.
Delegates at Technivation had the opportunity to tour the training facility and meet representatives from equipment manufacturers including Summit Systems, Kistler, Arburg, and Staubli. Tom Higginbottom, Bunting’s Sales Engineer, was demonstrating how to effectively remove metal from the plastics process using a combination of a FF Drawer Filter Magnet and Quicktron Metal Detector.
“At Technivation it was really good to be able to demonstrate how to remove metal and also to show how the equipment is actually installed on a working moulding machine,” explained Tom. “We supplied the FF Drawer Filter Magnets to PTIC so that the importance of metal removal is included in the training programmes.”
Magnetic Separator Technology for Plastics Training
The Polymer Training & Innovation Centre in Telford has added a Bunting Magnetics Drawer Filter Magnet to the range of equipment at their plastics manufacturing training facility. The FF Drawer Filter Magnet attracts and captures any fine and coarse magnetically susceptible materials that enter the plastics manufacturing process.
The Polymer Training & Innovation Centre provides polymer training and consultancy, specialising in injection moulding, blow moulding and extrusion training. They are a technical training and consultancy business that is owned by City of Wolverhampton College.
At their Telford training facility, the Polymer Training & Innovation Centre has working production-sized plastics manufacturing equipment for injection moulding, blow moulding, thermoforming, materials handling, and a wide range of other important ancillary equipment.
Technical Trainer, Andrew Dermody, explained the importance of trainees having practical training on the equipment.
“We have great support from the industry and equipment manufacturers such as Bunting. This support means that we can deliver practical training, with a hands-on approach, and that is the best way for our delegates to learn. Having the Drawer Filter Magnet installed exactly as it would be in a production plant, is an ideal way to show our students best-practice and highlight the importance of metal removal.”
The training facility at Telford was refurbished in early 2017 and Bunting supplied the FF Drawer Filter Magnet in March 2018. The FF Grate Magnet is bolted onto the bottom flange of a Summit Systems fed hopper. The Magnetic Separator has a transparent front plate so that operators are able to see the material passing through or held within the system. Virgin plastic beads fall from the hopper through two rows of high strength Tube Magnets, which attract and hold any magnetically susceptible materials. The Tube Magnets use ultra-strong, permanent, Neodymium Rare Earth Magnets. The cleaned plastic beads are then fed into the Engel injection moulding machine. Removing all metal contamination ensures that the final plastic product is free from defects and reduces the amount of waste and potential damage to moulding machines.
On a regular frequency, dictated by the amount of metal captured, the Tube Magnets are removed as one complete assembly from the housing and cleaned. The design of the Drawer Filter Magnet means that removal of the Magnet Assembly is quick and easy, keeping maintenance times to a minimum.
“The Bunting design is good as it is very visible,” said Dermody. “Often Magnetic Separators are placed out of sight in hoppers, which means that they can be forgotten. In this installation, the Drawer Filter Magnet is right in front of the machine operator and the clear front allows easy visual checking of the magnets.”
Bunting also supplied Drawer Filter Magnets for use in the classroom and the Polymer Training & Innovation Centre plan to incorporate ‘metal separation’ as one of the course topics.
The Drawer Grate Magnet is widely regarded as standard for the plastics industry and Bunting has supplied thousands to plastics manufacturing operations globally.
“It is great that delegates are able to see, in practice, the importance of having good Magnetic Separation equipment in the plastics process,” said Tom Higginbottom, Bunting’s Sales Engineer. “Even with virgin raw materials, there is always a small amount of fine ferrous metal contamination and there is always the risk of larger tramp iron that could seriously damage the injection moulding machine.”
On the 18th April 2018, the Polymer Training & Innovation Centre is staging the Technivationevent at their recently upgraded training facility in Telford. During the day there will be a series of short technical presentations, the opportunity to experience their Polymer on-line simulation software, and the chance to meet and talk with primary and secondary equipment suppliers including Bunting Magnetics. Visitors will be able to learn more about Polymer Apprenticeship’s and Funding and discuss their organisations own training requirements.
Electro Magnetic Filters Ordered by Turkish Ceramics Producer
Bunting’s first time as an exhibitor at Ceramitec 2018, the leading exhibition for ceramics and ceramic technology held in Munich, Germany (April 10-13), proved to be a huge success.
“We did not expect to secure orders on the stand,” said Dave Hills, Bunting’s Head of Sales, “and were thrilled to have an order placed for two Electro Magnetic Filters from a ceramic producer in Turkey.”
Bunting was exhibiting alongside ceramics and mineral processing magnetic separator specialist Master Magnets.
” When we [Bunting] acquired Master Magnets [January 2017] our aim was to expand our product portfolio and end-markets. For decades, Master Magnets has been a leader in the design and manufacture of high intensity magnetic separators for the ceramics and mineral processing industries. At Ceramitec, the global awareness of the Master Magnets brand was very evident.”
During the 4-day exhibition, Bunting and Master Magnets received enquiries for:
Magnetic Liquid Traps – installed in pipelines with high intensity Rare Earth Magnets removing fine iron from slips and glazes;
Drawer Filter Magnets – installed on dry process lines to remove free and tramp iron, protecting mills and other processing equipment;
Rare Earth Roll Separators – used to remove weakly and para magnetic materials and minerals from non-metallic bodies such as Spray Dried Ceramics, Feldspar and Silica Sand;
Induced Roll Separators (IMR) – used for the continuous extraction of weakly and para magnetic particles from non-metallic minerals such as feldspar and silica sand;
“Ceramitec proved to be a resounding success. We are going to be busy confirming our magnetic separator recommendations and also conducting laboratory tests in the Master Magnets laboratory in Birmingham, UK,” said Dave.
For further information on Bunting Magnetics and Master Magnets and our range of magnetic separation equipment designed for purifying ceramics and non-metallic minerals, please visit our websites or contact us on:
UK Food Standards Agency Reports 6 Metal-in-Food Problems in 2017
Six warnings of UK food being contaminated with metal fragments were reported by the UK Food Standards Agency in 2017. The food safety warnings ranged from sweets to meat products.
Metal In Food Safety Warnings 2017
Greencore recalled various brands of Chicken and Bacon Caesar Wraps because of concerns that the products contained metal fragments (20 December 2017). Greencore, as precautionary measure, recalled various brands of Chicken and Bacon Caesar Wraps. The products, manufactured by Greencore, were sold in Aldi, Co-op Food and Morrisons retail stores.
Athole Tablet Ltd recalled tablet products because of possible contamination by small pieces of metal (31 August 2017).
William Santus & Co recalled Uncle Joe’s Liquorice & Aniseed Extra Strong Mints (35g tins) as there were concerns that the sweets may have contained small pieces of metal (15 May 2017).
Quorn Foods Ltd recalled a batch of its frozen Quorn Meat Free Mince because of the presence of small pieces of metal (2 March 2017). The affected product was only on sale at Tesco from 27 February 2017 to 1 March 2017.
Lotus Bakeries UK Ltd recalled Lotus Biscoff Crunchy Biscuit Spread because of small metal contamination concerns (2 March 2017). This product was sold at Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Asda, Waitrose, Ocado and Nisa stores. In addition, batch number 7005109 with ‘best before’ date 5 February 2018 has also been sold through East End Foods.
How Does Metal Get Into Food?
All of the foods listed have been processed and it is during that process that metal can contaminate the product. Food entering a process plant will potentially go through stages of washing, size reduction (e.g. cutting, mashing, slicing), mixing, forming, cooking and packaging. Metal can be introduced from the wear or failure of processing equipment, or through human error. In fact, it is not uncommon for metal to contaminate food. However, it is unusual that metal contaminated food reaches the end consumer.
All food companies use a combination of Magnetic Separators and Metal Detectors to separate and detect the metal. When metal contaminated products are found to reach the consumer, it can be concluded that this safety equipment failed.
Other countries, including Sweden and Germany, already operate schemes where people pay a deposit when purchasing some drinking containers.
This latest announcement may be considered as a knee-jerk reaction to the global dismay about plastic waste following the airing of the Blue Planet II series. Environment Secretary Michael Gove said there was no doubt that plastic was “wreaking havoc” on the marine environment and discarded plastic bottles and cans “end up dumped on pavements and lobbed into rivers, lakes and the sea”.
Although most people agree with the sentiment of the new policy, there are serious concerns about the UK’s ability to handle the increase in the amount of plastic waste. The UK Government has not outlined how the recovered plastics will be recycled and how it will work financially.
Already, since China banned plastic waste imports [January 2018] there have been concerns about how the UK will manage plastic waste, especially as 2.7 million tonnes was shipped to China since 2012. This new policy will potentially reduce the amount of plastic going to landfill, but also add to the amount of plastic waste that was previously shipped to China. That equates to a lot of plastic waste.
Are There Enough Plastic Recycling Plants?
An increase in recovered plastic waste means that there needs to be a significant growth in the number of specialist recycling plants. However, profitably operating a plastics recycling plant has proven to be difficult, with many plants being commissioned and then closed or sold within a very short space of time.
There has been an established network for the collection and successful recycling of steel and aluminium beverage cans for decades. Part of the reason for the success is that both materials are easily recyclable, using a combination of Magnetic Separators and Eddy Current Separators, and converted into new steel and aluminium. Presently, the same cannot be said for plastic.
The UK Government may decide to commit all the collected deposits to expanding and funding a network of specialist recycling plants, although where this money will go is is presently unclear. It will be interesting to hear if there are plans to invest in the development of technology to enable successfully and financially viable mixed plastic recycling. Also, will product designers now be forced to consider the recyclability of a product rather than the aesthetic appearance?
Certainly, a holistic plan is needed before this new initiative is put in place.
Master Magnets specialise in the design and manufacture of high intensity magnetic separators for the ceramics and mineral processing industries with a reputation as a global leading supplier. The Magnetic Separation technology is used when processing dry raw materials, mineral slurries and ceramics slips & glazes to separate and remove strong and weakly magnetic minerals.
The Master Magnets product portfolio for the ceramics and non-metallic minerals industry is extensive with equipment installed in plants across the world over the past 40 years. At their facility in Redditch, UK, they have a complete laboratory with a range of high intensity magnetic separators. Controlled tests in the laboratory prove separation capabilities and form the basis of process guarantees.
The Master Magnets product range covers both dry and wet processing.
Dry Magnetic Processing
Rare Earth Roll Separators – For the purification of dry fine or course material containing ferromagnetic and paramagnetic particles. Commonly used to purify spray dried ceramics, silica sand, and feldspar.
Induced Magnetic Roll Separators – For the continuous extraction of small magnetic particles from certain minerals to produce mineral purification for a wide range of mineral and ceramic processing industries.
Electro Magnetic Filters – The High Intensity Electro Magnetic Filter is designed for the continuous removal of ferrous/magnetic and paramagnetic particles from mineral slurries, and ceramics slips and glazes.
The experienced team look forward to meeting companies at Ceramitec and assisting in improving the purity of non-metallic minerals and ceramic raw materials.
For further information on Bunting Magnetics and Master Magnets and our range of magnetic separation equipment designed for purifying ceramics and non-metallic minerals, please visit our websites or contact us on: