“We supply our customers with a plug & play solution immediately ready for use” is how Gernot Dorn, Sales Manager PVC at battenfeld-cincinnati Austria GmbH, Vienna describes in a nutshell the decisive advantage of the machine manufacturer’s cooperation with the Spanish company Molecor Tecnologia SL, based in Loeches-Madrid. Molecor is not only a processor making PVC-O pipes in a wide range of different dimensions itself, but also a machine manufacturer offering customized complete lines to produce them jointly with battenfeld-cincinnati. Customers benefit from this vast pool of expert knowledge and are optimally prepared to meet the growth market of PVC-O pipes with the appropriate machine technology. After all, oriented PVC pipes are increasingly replacing metal and polyolefin pipes in the pressure pipe sector, due to their decisive advantages.
Since its foundation in 2006, Molecor has seen enormous growth and is known today as the world’s largest and most experienced PVC-O pipe manufacturing companies with production plants in Spain, Malaysia, South America and South Africa. “Thanks to our enormous wealth of experience, we make top-quality pressure pipes with an unparalleled price/performance ratio”, Dolores Herran, Business Development Director at Molecor, presents the company’s special competence. PVC is an ideal raw material for pipe production, recommending itself by its range of good properties at a relatively favorable price. When compared with the competing metal pipe sector, plastic pipes score with corrosion resistance and easier laying; when compared with PE pipes, PVC pipes win by their about 15%-20% lower material price.
A further special feature of PVC-O pipes is their profile of ideal mechanical attributes with higher free section for more flow transportation resulting from a special production method. This consists of two process steps: production of a thick-walled preliminary pipe on a standard PVC pipe extrusion line, and subsequent heating this proforma pipe and further forming of the pipe by orientation in a special mold. While the length of the pipe remains unchanged, this leads to its external diameter being almost doubled, with a significant reduction of its wall thickness. During the orientation process, the polymer molecules orient themselves in the hoop direction , with the result of high mechanical properties: impact resistance, no crack propagations, fatigue resistance among others . When compared to conventional PVC-U pipes, PVC-O pipes come with up to 50% thinner wall thicknesses for the same pressure class. The resulting lighter weight per meter facilitates handling on building sites enormously. This equally applies to comparisons with metal or polyolefin pipes. These advantages are driving the increasing global demand for PVC-O pipes in all sectors of water management.
Molecor currently operates itself seven extrusion lines from battenfeld-cincinnati at its main production plant in Loeches to produce PVC-O pipes with external diameters ranging from DN90 to DN1,200 mm. All of these lines are equipped with high-performance parallel twin screw extruders from the twinEX series, PVC-O spider pipe dies with internal cooling and all necessary downstream components, such as vacuum bath, haul-off and cutting saw. Molecor manufactures itself and not only for its own production lines, the line components for the second process step, which include a heating station, the blowing station and a cooling unit. “Of course we make use of our own experience in pipe production for continuous optimization of our machine technology”, Dolores Herran highlights a feature providing added value for customers.
battenfeld-cincinnati and Molecor have now sold jointly more than 15 lines for producing PVC-O pipes world-wide, to destinations such as India, Kazakstan, Malaysia, and Australia. “Our success proves us right: the ideally coordinated complete extrusion lines combined with Molecor technology offer pipe manufacturers a clear competitive edge”, Gernot Dorn sums up.