At Broxap, we are committed to improving the environment – whether that’s through the transformational outdoor projects we contribute to across the UK or here in North Staffordshire where we are based.
Manufacturing faces many challenges when it comes to improving sustainability and it is testament to our environmental commitment as a business that we’ve confronted some of the key issues head on to spearhead change in the industry.
Among the actions we have taken is the investment of about £1.2 million in a new automated powder coating system which is revolutionising our production processes, as well as reducing our impact on the environment.
The Eurotherm powder coating system is delivering benefits for our clients, our workforce, and the wider environment.
It incorporates a highly innovative pretreatment stage, allows for precision powder coating and is energy efficient.
The system has increased capacity at our 125,000 sq ft manufacturing facility and it delivers on Broxap’s high standards for a durable, long-lasting and superior product finish.
The ‘power and free’ system designed by Eurotherm allows manual loading of products before they travel through the powder coating processing zones via an automatic overhead bi-rail conveyor.
This option means the system can handle Broxap’s wide and varied range of product shapes and sizes. It is capable of processing maximum component sizes of 5,500mm long x 1,050mm wide x 2,900mm high at a conveyor speed of 1m/minute and component weights of up to 550kg.
The first stage involves a pre-treatment and washing tunnel, which incorporates the Pronortec system, a unique nanotechnological conversion that employs the chemistry of organic phosphorus compounds for a system that is totally free of heavy metals.
The nanocoating created by the Pronortec process is highly hydrophobic and provides excellent adhesion and high corrosion resistance.
A reverse osmosis systems purifies the rinse water. Utilising this technology reduces water consumption by up to 50% if compared to conventional zinc phosphate pre-treatment, generates no waste water and does not create any toxic sludge.
It's energy saving too, using half the gas and electrical energy consumption of a zinc phosphate counterpart system.
This is partly down to the design of the drying and curing ovens which feature the latest burner technology and are built to retain optimum temperatures for longer and reduce heat loss.
Following this stage the products enter a manual powder coating booth, designed for quick cleaning to support efficient colour changes, before entering the final drying and cooling phase.
The Eurotherm automated powder coating system, supplied by PFS Paint Finishing Systems, is one of a number of improvements and investments under Project Transform – a £3 million programme to accelerate Broxap’s journey towards net zero goals.
This includes a fibre laser cutting machine; new press brakes with automatic tool change functions; briquetting technology and waste wood heaters; and a state-of-the-art five axis CNC machining centre.
Equipping our factory with smart technologies and innovative systems supports operational efficiency, reduced energy consumption and green energy production.
These optimised methods also ensure our products last longer, offer supreme durability and lend themselves to remanufacturing and recycling to save on raw materials.
These practices are becoming more important to sustainable manufacturing in the UK and we’re very proud to put ourselves at the forefront of change.