Moretto: A new generation dryer
Moretto has been active for over 40 years in the design and production of auxiliary equipment for the processing of plastics, with a particular focus on dehumidification, one of the company's core businesses.
What many are now presenting on the market as novelties, are part of Moretto’s history and the result of years of study, testing, analysis and evolution, all of which have contributed to the development of cutting-edge solutions that have established themselves on the market for their technological value, efficiency and performance.
The 2000s, a succession of innovations
For Moretto, 2006 is a year of challenges. X DRYER, the innovative and exclusive flexible dehumidification system available in 9 sizes is introduced for the first time to the public at the Plast trade fair in Milan.
X DRYER soon gains a strong market position thanks to some distinctive features:
- ONE POWER, only one energy source
- Switch valves with electric movement
- 5-inch display that increases to 7 inches in the current series
- Air-to-air cooling
- Energy consumption about 45% lower than the other solutions available on the market, a record that is still unbeaten.
2006 also saw the launch of the new Sky Blue colour, the sky-blue that distinguishes all Moretto solutions.
This was followed in 2008 by the presentation of the XD 800 Series, which feeds on the construction and technological know-how of the 20 series.
Fig. 1 X DRYER 20 series - launched in 2006
2010 saw the launch of OTX, the new high-efficiency hopper that many have tried to imitate without success. Thanks to Leonardo super computer - an exceptional computer capable of 22 trillion operations per second -, OTX is the result of studies and sophisticated mathematical simulations that have allowed us to fully revisit the concepts of geometry, fluid dynamics, thermodynamics and material flow, clearly showing how to optimise energy exchange in plastics drying. Thanks to its innovative geometry, OTX ensures a smooth flow of granules, guaranteeing the correct drying of each individual granule being processed. The optimisation of the process parameters has also allowed to reduce by 40% the hopper size, the technological airflow and the treatment time, whilst maintaining the same hourly throughput. The reduction in hopper size was made possible by the energy efficiency of OTX, improved by 66% whilst maintaining the same production capacity. The use of a smaller hopper requires a smaller dryer. A combination that brings a real energy saving of 41.2%, which, considering current costs, guarantees unbeatable optimisation.
Fig. 3 Innovative OTX hopper
Furthermore, a condensate separator was developed in 2012 that was more successful than expected. A modular project that resulted in the realisation of hundreds of applications each year, tailored to specific customer needs. This solution, suitable for condensing in the drying circuit, improves the process by significantly increasing the efficiency of the dryers with the condensation of most of the extracted vapours, significantly improving the autonomy of the dryer.
Fig. 5 Condensate separator
2014 saw the completion of the HYPER FLOW turbocompressor project and the launch of the first machine capable of generating 1,800 mc/h of technological air. A solution developed with the aim of creating a machine capable of providing airflow using as little energy as possible.
Fig. 6 Turbocompressor range
Side channel pumps were normally used before to fulfill this need, with an approximate 28% yield, and therefore a significant energy consumption. Given the exceptional results achieved, Moretto is extending the range with two new larger models: 1,800 and a 2,400 mc/h. As an example, during standard constant operation, the Hyper Flow HF1800 version powered by a 15 kW motor to develop 1,800 mc/h at 220 mbar only uses 4.8 kW. This is as much as 10 kW less than the well-known side channel suction units, saving 25,600 Euro/year in energy costs.
What distinguishes the Moretto turbocompressor is the speed of the impeller, which ranges from 6,000 to 20,000 rpm depending on the model. The choice of installing the high-speed motor directly to the impeller avoids the belt drive, which would entail an additional element subject to wear, and therefore needing regular maintenance. Ten Hyper Flow turbocompressor sizes are available: 15, 30, 90, 150, 240, 400, 800, 1200, 1800 and 2400 mc/h.
Given the remarkable results achieved in terms of energy efficiency, Hyper Flow turbocompressors were already installed in 2016 on the X MAX series and XD 800 dryers. They will soon also be applied to the entire XD20 dryer series range.
Moretto's turbocompressor was first used in response to a large American customer who had commissioned a PET drying system with an hourly throughput of 8,800 kg/h. Taking advantage of the developed technologies, the project brought to the realisation of a dryer with 7 units capable of generating 12,600 mc/h. A successful delivery that 8 years later continues to operate to full customer satisfaction, with a power consumption of only 60.2 watts per kg and a final moisture target of 25 ppm. Results made possible thanks to a number of process and structural improvements, such as:
- Electrically operated switch valve
- Air-to-air cooling
- Total energy saving
- OTX (Original Thermal eXchanger)
- Hyper Flow turbocompressor
- X MAX Dryer
Fig. 7 Dryer X MAX
A combination of solutions that leads to a saving of 41.2% compared to existing machines on the market.
Below is an explanation of a typical application.
Material: PET granule
Energy consumption per year
ROI (Return of Investment)
The saving achieved with the Moretto product compared to other solutions on the market guarantees payback of the investment in just 21.2 months. This is possible thanks to the performance of the OTX hopper and the Hyper Flow turbocompressors.
In the plastics processing sector, the cost of raw materials is the most important factor, followed by energy. A saving of 39 kW/h may seem modest but it becomes considerable when looking at it on an annual basis.
The current macroeconomic framework considers the cost of energy a critical factor of great interest. With its solutions, Moretto offers tangible help, especially to the most energy-intensive companies.
As a complement to the most important innovations to date, 2016 saw the launch of Moisture Meter, the only IN-LINE moisture measurement instrument that does not require calibration. Connected to the dryer, this instrument manages the process by automatically modulating the dryer according to the moisture content of the granule.
The Manager version includes an instrument that detects the moisture content of the virgin granule entering the hopper and transmits the information to the dryer, which sets the performance level as appropriate to ensure a final moisture value within the printing limits. A second instrument measures the final value at the hopper output, immediately before processing. This ensures that only the energy strictly needed to achieve a quality production is used, therefore keeping energy costs to the absolute minimum. Moisture Meter Manager monitors and manages the drying process by controlling the result in terms of final moisture content, starting with the initial detection that tells the dryer what level of performance is required, anticipating and adjusting the process minute by minute.
A treatment that can also be monitored remotely through MOWIS, the software platform developed by Moretto to monitor and manage the entire production process in the processing plant. A modular and self-configurable tool that can be used on-site or remotely, and which thanks the OPC UA protocol achieves total connectivity between machines, processes, departments and plants, in perfect harmony with the provisions dictated by the Intelligent Factory 4.0 concept.
- X Technology Dryer
- OTX Hopper
- Hyper Flow turbocompressor
- Moisture Meter Manager
- MOWIS Supervisor
Fig. 8 MOWIS – Moretto Objects Windows Integrated Supervisor
An exclusive and winning quintet in plastics processing. More than 40 years of innovations set Moretto products above the rest. Applications that confirm the worthiness of our solutions, as demonstrated by the many imitation attempts of the competition.
- Moretto S.p.A