ROFIN’s new web movement compensation (WMC) system provides complete compensation of web movement during laser perforation of packaging. The solution encompasses a comprehensive speed range, from 0m to in excess of 500m per minute; as such it covers requirements during the whole process (from immediately after start up to complete standstill).

Higher profitability and higher production speeds

When the laser pulse hits the fast-moving material the quality of the hole may not be as required. If pulse duration and web speed exceed certain values, the holes become visibly oval. There is insufficient energy left for complete perforation of the material. In many cases, material that has been produced at high speed is not of the accuracy required to allow the specified air exchange and is therefore unusable. To overcome this issue the web speed is reduced, resulting in higher production costs. ROFIN’s WMC system dramatically cuts material waste and in this way can quadruple achievable web speeds.

The WMC technology allows satisfactory perforation on materials that historically could not have been processed at profitable rates, such as thick films (>100µm) or films comprising of sophisticated material combinations. As of now the StarPerfo Advanced is available – the new web movement compensation solution from ROFIN.

Increasingly precise perforation for demanding packaging design

Packaging technology is increasingly demanding precision control of perforated hole dimensions. The shelf life of fresh food can be considerably enhanced by optimising the size of the hole. Profitability increases as quality is maintained regardless of the speed at which the product is perforated. A longer shelf life results in less waste being disposed of. The outcome of this is lower costs and hence more attractive pricing.

What is more, the growth in markets such as health foods and snacks has driven the requirement for attractive presentation, alongside an extended shelf life of organic fruit, vegetables, nuts, dried fruit and cereals. An additional requirement has also arisen for multi-chamber trays for multi-component snacks; each chamber requires perforating differently, to optimise the storage life of the ingredients within that particular chamber.

High-end solutions for laser-optimized packaging from the specialist

ROFIN’s WMC system has been developed by product designers who have over 30 years of experience in processing materials on winder systems. The company’s CO2 systems business unit, located in Starnberg, is the global market leader in this industry sector, and is the only supplier of laser sources through to a complete solution. ROFIN uses its own laser sources as a starting point and matches them with optics, scanner heads, machine building and software to give the optimum technical solution. The graphic user interface allows user friendly control of the entire system including previews of possible perforation and scribing speeds.

ROFIN carries out customer-specific trials, under real winding conditions at their in-house application lab. Application engineers determine the optimum laser and process parameters for the desired application. Customer presence at the applications trial is welcomed, as this allows all technical options to be investigated in order to meet the customer requirements. ROFIN’s worldwide sales and service network gives fast support to any location in the field.