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RHL’s major new developments on display in China

The showcase among the world leading technology at ITMA Asia + CITME and a prestige installation at a brand new viscose plant in China are expected to attract the attention of regional textile and nonwovens producers, Richard Hough reports. According to the Managing Director Anthony Ashton, China and the whole of Asia are key elements in the company’s commercial focus. He is confident that the showcased developments will provide a positive feedback from the industry.

3rd June 2014

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Bolton


Richard Hough (RHL), the specialist producer of dewatering, squeezing and calendering rolls, will be one of the leading technology exhibits at the ITMA Asia + CITME show that will take place from 16-20 June in Shanghai.  

At the Shanghai exhibition, the UK headquartered company will feature the latest version of its famous Roberto roll, the first name in nonwovens squeezing for several decades, and now incorporating two notable innovations, the company reports. Show visitors will also see the novel Syncast polyamide calender sleeves, based on pioneering polymer technology.

Competitive drive

The show also comes as Richard Hough announces a massive coup with the commissioning of a viscose staple fibre plant in Fujian, China, in which all four production lines are equipped with the company’s Nollap dewatering rolls.

Close-up of Nollap roll in the Sateri viscose plant at Fujian. © Richard Hough

Fujian is a greenfield site operated by Sateri, one of the leading producers of textile cellulosics. Its capacity of 200,000 tonnes per year adds to existing Sateri facilities in China and will spearhead a competitive drive into wider markets, including speciality nonwovens.

Major quality advantage

Three of the 3.6 metre process lines are already in use, and Sateri reports good progress in throughput volumes and capacity utilisation. The RHL Managing Director Anthony Ashton commented: “The Nollap rollers specified by Sateri are part of the Roberto equipment family and are able to reduce residual moisture from 120% down to nearer 110% before the viscose fibre is presented to the dryers. This represents a huge saving in energy costs, conservatively estimated at Euros 100,000 per year for each line.”

The new Sateri viscose staple fibre plant at Fujian, China. © Richard Hough

There is also a major quality advantage over the use of conventional stainless steel lines at the dewatering nip, which tends to crush and shine the viscose fibres, making further processing more difficult, according to the company. “With Nollap technology, only the highest quality viscose fibres can be produced,” said Ashton.

Show highlights

Richard Hough is now working with a new agent, James Wen, a Chinese expert in nonwovens roll applications, who will present the company’s products at ITMA Asia + CITME.

Show highlights will include two new features with the Roberto roll. Firstly, technical improvements to the roll are said to provide a 100% increase in chemical resistance, mark resistance and elasticity. Secondly, the Roberto is now offered in sleeve form, an option which will be seen in public for the first time at this show.

View of the three Sateri viscose lines equipped with RHL Nollap dewatering rolls. © Richard Hough

The sleeve simply slides over the existing shaft to replace an old sleeve or damaged area and users can easily stock their own spare sleeves.

Excellent runability

For calendering applications, RHL will exhibit the Syncast polyamide calender sleeve, made on the technically-advanced centrifugal casting machine. It is said to offer top performance and fast payback, avoiding the need for major calender rebuilds.

The Syncast rolls and sleeves are based on a highly-elastic thermoplastic polymer, specially developed for textile calender rolls. The level of elasticity is vital, ensuring minimal surface marking and shape distortion, as well as excellent runability and maximum service life.

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