From May 6 to 10, some 55,000+ plastics industry people are expected to descend on Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center for NPE2024. NPE2024 is the largest plastics industry exposition in the Americas, featuring more than 2,000 companies exhibiting the latest plastics processing technology within over 1.1 million square feet of convention space.

Conair (Booth W2113) will be making its largest – and by far most interactive – presentation ever at the Orlando show.  There, Conair is introducing a dozen new products and showcasing more than 55 pieces of equipment, arranged in eight functional areas, all aimed at helping users “Make Every Pellet Count.”

The Conair team is ready to meet our customers where they are today, facing a competitive market characterized by a shortage of labor, increasing quality and pricing competition, and global pressure to achieve greater sustainability. And the company has taken action to help processors address all of these challenges with practical, affordable solutions.

Among the highlights at the booth are two new controls that leverage artificial intelligence, enabling them to help automate complex, error-prone tasks that until now required a lot of human intervention.

  • The first of these is a live demonstration of a new and patented AI-driven conveying technology called Conveying with Optimizer, an option that can be retrofit to conveying systems built around Conair’s SmartFLX conveying control. Without the need for manual assistance or adjustments to conveying equipment (distribution boxes, valves, pumps, or wands) the patented Conveying with Optimizer technology creates and maintains an optimal material flow regardless of material characteristics, distances, or destinations while automatically compensating to prevent common conveying problems. All the operator needs to do is tell the SmartFLX control where to send the material, and the technology – a combination of special SmartFLX logic and added line-control hardware — takes care of the rest.
  • The second new AI-driven technology, called ResinWorks with Optimizer, equips Conair ResinWorks multi-hopper drying systems with the AI logic and hardware that automates the tricky process of maintaining process-ready resins, a process that until now required careful manual adjustment of air dampers at the base of each ResinWorks hopper. Now, the ResinWorks with Optimizer system performs this task automatically, delivering dried resins at perfect temperatures and varied throughputs, while preventing over-drying and realizing energy savings of 10 to 40 percent.

Other new product introductions include:

  • Auto RSS, a compact, fully-automated line proofing and resin selection system that manages up to 60 resin sources and destinations.
  • New temperature control solutions, including the industry’s smallest-ever TCU, the Thermolator® microTemp MTC-B and MTC-T.
  • The new TrueBlend TB-T blender, which combines an ultra-compact footprint and easy cleanability with high precision blending and throughput capacities from one to 100 lb/hr.
  • The new SG “Smart Granulator” control, which provides features for self-monitoring, maintenance, as well as easy setup and operation of granulation systems and accessories (e.g., film blowers, scrap feeders, regrind conveyors, etc.)
  • The new EH drying hopper, plus a redesigned mobile dryer.
  • The SmartFLX Mini, a new, smaller conveying control based on the SmartFLX.
  • Announcement of Profile Master, Conair’s new line of downstream profile extrusion equipment.

Two other notable demonstrations include a working extrusion line, within the Conair booth, that is manufacturing 3-D filament and medical tubes. The second involves a Viper granulator, equipped with Conair’s new Smart Granulator Control, that is working as part of the recycling demonstration at the “Bottle Zone” in the South Exhibit Hall.  There, the Viper will be part of an effort to recycle 100 percent of the PET (to create RPET) from plastic bottles produced and used at NPE2024.