Kurtz Ersa receives Recycling Award from EPS Industry Alliance

RF technology convinces independent American jury of experts

The EPS Recycling Award is currently still on its way from the USA to Germany. The Kurtz GmbH team can hardly wait to receive the award
The EPS Recycling Award is currently still on its way from the USA to Germany. The Kurtz GmbH team can hardly wait to receive the award

Kreuzwertheim/Crofton (MD), 22.04.2020
Typically, every year in March, about 250 decision makers of the plastics industry gather at EPS EXPO in Charleston, South Carolina, for the North American conference of the EPS Industry Alliance. On the eve of the two-day conference with top industry speakers focusing on the processing of expanded polystyrene (EPS), the annual Excellence in EPS Recycling Awards are presented. However, due to the ongoing corona pandemic, this year´s award ceremony was held virtually. We feel no less honored and delighted to receive this extraordinary award, which has been presented for the seventh time. The recycling award recognizes outstanding achievements and new processes in the recycling of EPS. It raises awareness of the good recyclability of polystyrene, being usually either ignored or dismissed as too difficult to recycle. In addition, the award serves as a model for other companions in the industry for their programs and solutions. Kurtz GmbH´s winning entry for its new high frequency fusion technology is an example of ongoing innovation in EPS recycling. The molded parts produced by the Kurtz WAVE FOAMER consist of 70 % recycled material. At the same time, the RF process offers energy savings of up to 90 % compared to the conventional manufacturing process with steam.

Since the introduction of the EPS Recycling Award in 2013, there have been almost 60 nominees in total. The award is presented in three categories: Special programs and initiatives, recycling advancements and technology innovations. Each category has five evaluation criteria, weighted so that entries from large and small companies or organizations can compete in one field. Of the three award categories, Kurtz GmbH took the lead in the category “Technology Innovations” with its revolutionary RF technology. RF makes the fusion of particle foams without steam a reality. Recycled EPS as well as high-temperature resistant particle foams with fusion temperatures of up to 250 °C can be processed with the Kurtz WAVE FOAMER. Thus, in the future, the processing of technical plastics and biodegradable materials will also be possible. With the RF process from Kurtz Ersa, an EPS recycling rate of over 70 % is already achieved. Conventional processes can process a maximum of 20 % recycled EPS. In contrast to the steam process, the fusion is carried out from the inside to the outside by means of electromagnetic waves, thus achieving a perfect core fusion.

Companies were able to submit their projects from the beginning of December 2019 to 24 January 2020. A 4-member jury consisting of top-class representatives from the packaging industry, research and consulting as well as non-profit organizations judged the applications received. The judges were enthusiastic about the Kurtz RF Process: “This is a new era of recycling technology. Kurtz Ersa has given new life to EPS in a way that mechanical recycling can never do.” With the worldwide pursuit of actions to protect the environment, awards and events calling for a more sustainable way of life and work are gaining in importance. The Earth Day, which is being celebrated for the 50th time today, places an additional focus on the commitment of each individual to work for innovative environmental solutions. By investing in new technologies, Kurtz Ersa is also continuing to make progress in optimizing recycling management and promoting the use of recycled materials such as EPS.