PD_Packaging Digest

Packaging Digest, Fall 2015

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35 www.PackagingDigest.com FALL 2015 // NEW TECHNOLOGY demand type of packaging material: flm. The hinged clamshell of the optional dynamic accumulation device opens to reveal the two chambers. The film is mounted on the flat surface of the lid and when the hinge is closed, the film separates upper and lower chambers for OTR analysis. "Flat-flm OTR testing is an important element for flm manufacturers, flm converters and anybody working in fexible packaging because they need to know what barriers they have to prevent oxygen from ingressing into their product which reduces their shelf life," explains Culver. "An understanding of a flm's OTR has been an important piece of information for a long time. "Tis device introduces a cheaper way to perform OTR for flms and ample research shows that our method provides statistically identical results as competitive systems. It allows a number of other companies to obtain this information on a much more economical scale." Te OxySense permeation chamber is a hinged metal clamshell that measures about 5 inches square and 2 inches tall with two separate chambers. Te flm or other material to be tested—"Really any fat material in a fat 2x2 inch square format can be analyzed," says Culver—is placed across between the two sections of the chamber. Once closed, nitrogen is used to fush the "dynamic accumulation" chamber while the other is flled with oxygen. An optical fber shines light through a window onto a fuorescing sensor to non-destructively measure the rate at which oxygen accumulates. Te sensor measures the amount of oxygen that permeates through the flm over time. Te analyzer readout is the OTR in milliliters of gas per square meter per day. "A key element of UF's patent is that the oxygen sensor doesn't consume oxygen during the measurement, which was the key problem with this approach in the past," Culver points out. economical and scalable Te permeation chamber is available for $1,750 and must be used with the 5250i analyzer, which is listed at $12,750. Tat's comparable to competitive systems that are priced at $30,000 and upwards, according to Culver. He acknowledges that pricier systems may ofer other capabilities like humidity and temperature control. "Tese are two very diferent kinds of instruments, but they both can get you to the same destination," he adds. Notably, the OxySense system is scalable; up to 20 or more tests can be conducted simultaneously using a single OxySense 5250i analyzer and multiple permeation chambers. Te speed of the analysis depends on the permeability of the flm being measured. "A low-barrier flm will have a high OTR rate and the analysis can be done quickly," Culver says. "A high-barrier flm takes considerable time to evaluate." OxySense began working with the ASTM committee about two years ago to develop the standard. Culver estimates that OxySense has sold more than 100 of the systems worldwide including "foreign locations that rely on ASTM methods," he explains. "Now that this method has an ASTM standard associated with it, it's our belief that this going to expand the market. Researchers like the simplicity and a lower cost for this type of technology—it's a more efcient and economical way to get a substantial amount of information relative to permeation rates." Characteristic of scientifc and packaging endeavors, the search to make something good even better continues: OxySense has been working with Welt and UF on a high-speed version for which another patent has been fled. For further information, Dr. Bruce Welt is available by phone at 352-392-1864 or email at bwelt@uf.edu. the model 5250i analyzer connected to the optional otr device for flms. "this is a pretty big deal in gas permeation testing." — Professor Bruce Welt, Ph.D., coordinator of UF's Packaging Engineering Program ALL THE RIGHT RESINS. A capacity for leadership. In what matters most to you. When it comes to PET Resin, DAK Americas ® has just what you are look- ing for…Innovative PET Resins from pi- oneering research and development, state-of-the-art technologies and market know-how. All from one of the largest producers of PET Resins world- wide. DAK Americas' broad line of LA- SER+ ® PET Resins give you exceptional flexibility in meeting your design and production goals. From trade lead- ing products and technical service to recycling, to sustainable raw materi- als, we continue to demonstrate not just our record of innovation, but our steadfast commitment to you and to the industry. Today, tomorrow, and well into the future... DAK Americas. dakamericas.com I 1.888.738.2002 FOR ALL THE RIGHT REASONS.

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