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BOPP Film Modifiers: Efficiently Optimize Packaging Performance

BOPP films today are preferred substrate for packaging, labeling, and lamination because of its inherent moisture barrier properties, sealability, high clarity, best possibilities of the pack being a monolayer/homogeneous structure…

The expansion in the flexible packaging industry is driving the exponential growth in demand for BOPP films.

Keep up with the latest ways for optimizing BOPP film performance in order to meet this growing demand.

Explore here, detailed knowledge on the role of modifiers in improving processing conditions like extrudability, and thin film capacity and thus, enhance their performance properties.

Upgrading BOPP Films


TAGS:  Additives for Packaging      Additives for BOPP Film    

BOPP FilmBOPP films are extensively used in flexible packaging applications.

In order to fulfill the needs of this very demanding market, hydrocarbon resin-based compositions, modifiers, help to provide a remarkable combination of BOPP film properties such as better barrier performance, improved stiffness or shrinkage, and easier processing.

Let's understand these high-in-demand materials deeply, to better focus on emerging applications.

Continue reading to learn:



Enhancing BOPP Film Performance using Modifiers


BOPP film modifiers provide a wide range of benefits such as:

  • Barrier, 
  • Stiffness, 
  • Shrink, 
  • Transparency, 
  • Sealability, 
  • Twist retention

Enhanced BOPP Performances using Modifiers

Barrier Performance


BOPP film barrier performance can be increased with the addition of modifiers in the formulation, allowing simplified film structures, which, in turn, have a positive impact on cost. Moisture & oxygen barrier improvements lead to better protection of products sensitive to humidity & oxidation and help to keep fresher products.

Water Vapor transmission rate measures show that Moisture resistance
can be improved by 50% when using modifiers. 

Also, Oxygen transmission rate measures show that Oxygen barrier
can be enhanced by 70% when using modifiers.


The optimum addition level from a cost/performance point of view is dependent on the intended end-use application and the required barrier performance.


Mechanical Resistance


Addition of modifiers in PP formulation provides an overall improvement of mechanical properties thanks to a significant increase of BOPP film stiffness and higher elongation at break.

These benefits allow for downgauging opportunities.

1% secant modulus at different addition levels, which is a measurement of film stiffness, shows that:

A substantial increase of stiffness is achieved as a function of modifiers addition level
Measurement of elongation at the break on 21µm BOPP films with and without modifiers shows that: 

Higher elongation at break is achieved when modifiers are added in BOPP film formulation


These mechanical properties improvements brought by BOPP modifiers are very useful for many applications, such as overwrap films.


Film Shrinkage


By using modifiers, it is possible to enhance OPP film shrink. As a result, BOPP modifiers can be used in applications where a high shrink capability is necessary, such as shrink packaging and labeling.


Transparency


Polymer additives enhance the optical properties of BOPP films. As a result, a better BOPP film transparency is obtained and haze is decreased. The addition of modifiers can also improve the gloss characteristics of BOPP films.


Sealability


Addition of modifiers in BOPP Films leads to an improved sealability at lower temperatures. The addition of 30% modifiers significantly increases the peel strength of sealed BOPP film.

The addition of BOPP film modifiers into the core layer of coextruded films leads to an improved sealability at lower temperatures. Lower seal initiation temperature (SIT) and higher seal strengths are obtained when using BOPP modifiers. The shift of the sealability curve with about 10°C towards lower temperatures is of great commercial value. It means that the packaging line can be operated at higher speed and further results in energy savings and less heat degradation of the film and the packed goods.


Twist Retention - DeadFold


Introduction of modifiers improves dead-fold characteristics and twist retention of BOPP films. The addition of additives to a BOPP film brings the following benefits:

  • Up to 75% twist wrap retention
  • A printable surface
  • Excellent optical properties such as high gloss and low haze

% Modifiers in the Core % Twist Retention
0 25
40 65


Recommended product design:

Layer Polymer Thick (µ) Treatment Comments
L2 PP + 30 to 40 % modifiers 16 - 17 No Treatment If metallizable, do not add antilock
L2 PP + 30 to 40 % modifiers 16 - 17 No Treatment Anti stat in the core is optional
L3 Lower SIT copolymer or terpolymer + anti-block + slip agent 1 No treatment -


Commercial trials have confirmed that BOPP films containing modifiers give excellent candy twist wrap performance due to the combination of improved twist retention and higher stiffness.


Improving Processing Conditions


During film processing, BOPP film modifiers help to increase the extrudability and stretchability of films. In addition, this enables the production of thin films.

Let's identify opportunities to enhance processing conditions with the use of BOPP modifiers in plastics formulation.


Extrudability


BOPP Film Extrudability One of the major advantages of modifiers in BOPP film is that it enhances melt flow. Indeed, with increasing amounts of additives, the blend becomes less viscous. Thanks to its lower viscosity, the blend modifiers with polypropylene (PP) can be processed at lower temperatures than unmodified PP. Absolute extrusion temperatures vary from line to line but, melt temperature can be reduced by about 15°C with the addition of 40 wt% modifiers. The suggested extrusion temperature with PP additives is 230°C.

 » Find Out Here Commercially Available BOPP Film Modifier Grades Suitable For Extrusion Process! 


Stretchability


BOPP Film StretchabilityTemperatures in Machine Direction Orientation (MDO) and Transverse Direction Orientation (TDO) have to be controlled in a rather narrow range to avoid film breaks and obtain a good thickness profile.

The addition of BOPP modifiers, helps the orientation of the film resulting in easier processing:

  • BOPP / OPP film can be stretched at lower temperature
  • Reduced film breaks
  • Better control of thickness profile

Film producers can therefore optimize their throughput and reduce production waste even at addition level as low as 5%.


Thin Film Capability


BOPP Film Thin Capability Significant improvement of BOPP film mechanical resistance can be achieved when using modifiers, leading to downgauging opportunities.

Stiffer film can be achieved with modifiers, even when thickness is reduced by 20%. The use of this innovative additive allows for the production of more square meters of film per ton of raw material while still meeting customers’ requirements.


Food Packaging Professionals: Stay Alert!


Stay updated on latest advances in barrier food packaging technology to identify where the true potential and new opportunities exist for you and make better R&D decisions. Join the course: Food Packaging: Latest Barrier Solutions today!

Latest Barrier Food Packaging Solutions


Commercially Available BOPP Film Modifier Grades




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