A fairly new company is providing film processors with product-development expertise—and even doing limited production runs—in the area of biaxial film orientation. In business since 2010, Biax Laboratories LLC, Rutherfordton, N.C., has seen an increase in activity of late in the biax film development portion of its business, which also includes machine design and manufacturing and a variety of other services, says David Elliott, founder of the company and president of sister company Elliott International Machinery Corp. This past March, Biax Laboratories installed twin-screw extrusion capacity, teaming that with its machine- and transverse-direction orientation equipment. “We now offer a full package for dry and wet film processing,” Elliott states.
The new extruder lets Biax Laboratories offer processors materials-development services for film applications such as for food, battery separators, and filtration. The company’s biax line is 125-ft long and can run webs up to 140 in. wide. “There is a lot of development going on in lithium batteries and also microporous films for filtration in semi-conductors and other applications,” says Elliott. “Our equipment enables us to assist customers in these and other markets to validate their process and prove out the design and size of the machinery required to move to commercial production.”
A typical processing customer of Biax Laboratories is either a potential newcomer to a particular biax-film market, or one looking to develop second-generation products, Elliott states. Biax Laboratories has also assisted in the development of completely new processes such as nano technology.