Milliken Polymer Technology Improves Aesthetics and Performance of Homewares

Pinnacle Polymers LLC, a major polypropylene (PP) manufacturer based in Ridgefield, Conn., has reached new heights of aesthetics and quality by upgrading to Millad NX8000 technology from Milliken Chemical, a division of Milliken & Company.

Pinnacle's two new PP3 random copolymer grades offer customers superior aesthetics at an affordable price point. Besides giving housewares and other products a dramatically brighter and cleaner look, Pinnacle 5135C3 and 5155C3 resins enable shorter cooling times and a broader processing window, which can provide energy savings and cycle time reductions.

Storage Totes are Candidate Applications for Pinnacle Polymers’TM Two New PP3TM Random Copolymers, Clarified with Milliken Chemical’s Millad® NX8000.

"Milliken's Millad NX8000 technology makes a huge difference in the quality and processability of our new PP3 grades, including a four-fold improvement in yellowness index and the ability to mold at lower temperatures," said Ray Buckwalter, director of national accounts, Pinnacle Polymers. "Milliken's top-quality clarifier and value-added services, including testing and cycle time optimization, were instrumental in the development of these resins. We never even considered another supplier."

He added, "Initial results have been gratifying. One customer that showed prototypes at the International Home + Housewares show in March started writing orders on the spot, and is now supplying a major retailer."

Consumer Appeal Plus System Cost Reduction

The industry-leading performance of Millad NX8000 helps Pinnacle PP3 resins achieve a very low yellowness index rating of -15 compared to -2.5, which is typical of standard clarified PP. As a result, storage containers and other housewares merchandize better because they look brighter and fresher on store shelves. The materials, which are U.S. Food and Drug Association (FDA) approved for food contact, are also suitable for food packaging.

Pinnacle random clarified resins offer better impact properties when compared to the industry standard. This has proven to be of enormous benefit to processors, which have been able to reduce weight and decrease charge-backs and write-offs associated with damaged goods.

The newly upgraded Milliken clarifier also helps deliver system cost savings through a combination of shorter cycle times - thanks to lower molding temperatures that cut cooling duration - and a wider processing window for greater flexibility in temperature selection. Cycle time reductions of up to 26 percent and productivity increases of up to 35 percent are possible. Lower molding temperatures can reduce energy consumption by up to 22 percent. Further, Pinnacle PP3 grades can be processed on existing molding equipment, with existing set-ups.

"This collaboration with Pinnacle showcases the advantages for both polypropylene producers and molders from our Millad NX8000 clarifying technology," said Brian Burkhart, global market manager, Milliken Chemical. "Pinnacle has shown that improved aesthetic appeal in PP can be achieved while maintaining cost-effectiveness. The processability improvements provided by Millad NX8000, combined with exceptional aesthetics, deliver a true competitive edge."

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