Over the last 4 months, IBTEC have been working on a new concept in absorbent material manufacture which it anticipates will revolutionise the industry. The small prototype machine has recently been commissioned and the initial trials produced. After fully testing its performance, the results look very promising.
Ian Beardsall said “I have been working with absorbent materials for many years now. Firstly with wet-laid technologies then air-laid technologies and I have often wondered if there is a better way to produce an absorbent material which has a greater absorbent-to-weight ratio than is currently available at a competitive price. After working on another material development in the medical & industrial sector, I came up with this idea and thought it would work. So after seeing the product this week I feel very happy at this stage, although there is a long way to go”
The target absorbency of the initial material produced was to aim for 3 litres /m2 and this was produced with a material weighing 78.8g/m2 on the first attempt.With more refinement, this is expected to be improved,
The important thing is that the components to manufacture this material will cost no more than current materials. They are fully food contact and FDA approved and therefore IBTEC expect to see the material being very competitive in the market. It is just a smart way of putting the materials together which is the key.
IBTEC are now looking to take the trials further to a pilot line which it is anticipated will take approximately 9-12 months to design,build & commission. At the end of this, IBTEC will be working with potential investors to put together a program to build a full size production machine and facility to take the material to market.