SP Thermoforming introduces first line of carousel-based thermoforming machines

Suitable for pharmaceuticals, medical devices and food applications, SP Series’ revolutionary design offers Rreduced footprint and labour costs

SP Thermoforming's new SP-32/20

SP Thermoforming, the North American brand of UK-based Riverside Medical Packaging, has introduced a line of flexible and rigid blister thermoforming machines featuring carousel design. A departure from linear, metres-long chain-pulled thermoformers, the SP Series performs all necessary functions via a rotating drum through its radial workstations.

The SP Series is suitable for pharmaceutical, medical device and food applications, and can form both rigid and flexible/soft blisters. In the United States, Mexico and Puerto Rico, SP Thermoformers and local support are available through BTS International, a packaging machinery sales and consulting firm headquartered in New Jersey.

The SP Series offers multiple benefits; the first-of-its-kind carousel design reduces each machine's overall footprint considerably – an asset in contrast with traditional, floorspace-hungry linear thermoformers. The design also serves to reduce the amount of labour needed to operate the machines, allowing manufacturers to reallocate manpower elsewhere.

Compared to similar in-class machines, SP thermoformers are approximately 30% less expensive on average – significant considering that prices for blister machines can easily rise into the high six figures.

Operating costs for the SP Series are kept at a minimum, with factors including single-phase low energy consumption and easy repositioning. No water cooling is necessary. Simple tooling design helps lead to quick changeover, while simplified loading geometry allows for efficient and cost-effective automation.

The SP-32/20 capabilities-to-footprint ratio is unparalleled

Other important SP Series benefits include the elimination of gripper chains and trim, resulting in reduced maintenance, contamination and down-time. In addition, products packaged via the SP Series are placed directly into the actual mould that creates the form, and remain until the packaging process is complete; this eliminates the unwanted nuisance of product edges getting trapped in the seal.

The SP Thermoformer portfolio comprises eight machines, the largest of which can handle web widths up to 620 mm, indexes up to 250mm, and forming depths up to 100mm. The entire series is uniquely capable of handling variable web widths on a single machine. Dozens are currently in operation around the world, many with repeat customers – testament to the unique design’s streamlining effectiveness.

Among the most popular in the new line of thermoformers is the SP-32/20, which handles web widths of up to 320mm, indexes up to 200mm, and forming depths up to 80mm. The machine can produce up to 34 cycles/ min, and offers a host of standard features including airflex form and seal bellows with pressure control, as well as stepper motors for indexed drive, lockable form and seal heads, cross cut and positive discharge mechanism.

Various automatic and digital options further increase the machine's efficiency and, at approximately one cubic metre in size, the SP-32/20 capabilities-to-footprint ratio is unparalleled.