MINIATURE-SCALE R&D TECHNOLOGY
The Armfield FT102X has a well-deserved reputation for being simply the best Carbonator-Filler on the market. The new Armfield FT102LT utilises the same technology and most of the features and benefits, in a smaller, more cost-effective package.
- Accurate control of filling and carbonating variables
- Option of filling and crown-seal capping and/or screwtop capping at a single station
- 15l process vessel, positioned at a convenient height
- Batch & continuous processing
- Throughputs up to 60 l/h achievable (2l bottles)
- Wide range of cans or bottles can be used from 0.15l to in excess of 2l
- Evaluation service for customer cans and bottles
- CO2 content in excess of 10 g/l can be realised
- Enhanced colour touchscreen control
- In-bottle pressure measurement enables accurate and reproducible depressurisation
- Many parameters can be automated
- Carbonates foaming products
- Carbonates at any temperature between 4°C and 20°C
- Premix and postmix capability
- Fills non-carbonated drinks
- Easily reproducible test batches
- Very flexible and accurate
- No CO2 loss during filling due to double stage cooling
- Easy to use: many functions automated
- Cost saving: for small test batches no production line is required
- 32 preset programs
Preparing Carbonated Beverages in the Laboratory
The Armfield FT102LT Miniature-scale Carbonator-Filler provides the ability to establish precise and repeatable parameters when carbonating in the laboratory, this can dramatically improve the speed with which new products are developed.
Both premix and postmix operations are available from the standard machine. Options enable for deaeration of the product and evacuation of the bottles, and filling and capping (screw and/or crown) at a single station without removing the bottle.
The FT102LT Carbonator-Filler is easy to install, set up and use. Colour touchscreen control is used with a new graphical interface, enabling different carbonating and filling scenarios to be set and stored. The semi-automated cleaning programme takes the user step by step through the cleaning process and enables the unit to be made ready for another product or formulation.
The FT102LT is ideally suited as a general purpose filling and carbonation installation for small laboratory applications. Used in conjunction with one of Armfield’s FT74 UHT/HTST units, a complete drinks line can be created in the laboratory; consisting of heat treatment, carbonation, filling and capping.
The FT102LT is a combined carbonator and filler, designed primarily to enable R&D staff to prepare small quantities of beverages with reproducible characteristics and replicating the production product.
The carbonation takes place using a recirculation pump to circulate the product from a 15l vessel through a heat exchanger system and a sinter tube where the CO2 is introduced. The pressure in the carbonation vessel is controlled automatically by the PLC. The vessel has two compartments, an outer compartment from which the product to be carbonated is drawn, and an inner compartment which contains the most recently carbonated product. When the inner compartment is full the contents overflow into the outer compartment.
The product is chilled down to the required carbonation temperature using a heat exchanger with a switched valve control system. This requires an external chilled water supply. This can either be the customers own supply or the Armfield FT63 recirculating process chiller (which can also be used with other products in the laboratory such as an Armfield FT74XTS).
After carbonation, the product is passed to the filling head through a tubular heat exchanger which further cools the product to prevent CO2 release. The filling process takes place under PLC control. It consists of raising the bottle to the filling head, syrup dosing (option), evacuating the bottle (option), flushing the bottle with CO2, pressurising the bottle (CO2), counter-pressure filling the bottle, repressurising the vessel, allowing time for the contents to level out, depressurising (or snifting) and clearing the overflow.
Most functions of the FT102LT are under PLC control and the operator interface is a touchscreen control panel. It is possible to save and recall up to 32 sets of operating parameters to suit different products and containers. Each set of parameters can be allocated a descriptive name.
Filling and capping containers
A wide range of cans, PET and glass bottles can be handled. The standard options can handle most containers from 0.15 to 2 litres. However, we understand that all containers are different and we will be pleased to evaluate your containers in advance, particularly if screw capping is required.
FT102LT-2 Capper Enabling System
Incorporated into the filling station, this option enables the user to fit either the crown-seal capper or the screw-cap sealer into the capping head. It includes a pneumatic drive, which is used to move out the filling head and position the selected capper over the bottle. The two capping heads are interchangeable once installed, and can easily be fitted by the user.
FT102LT-4 Screw Cap Sealer Mechanism (Requires FT102LT-2)
For use with splined plastic screw caps. Includes a motor drive with a variable-torque setting to enable for a wide range of bottles and screw caps to be used. The motor limit current (hence the torque setting) is set electronically from the control panel. Different inserts can be fitted to the capping head to accommodate different types or sizes of cap. The standard insert fits many typical 28mm caps. Armfield can test your caps and bottles free of charge for suitability.
Note: For successful operation the FT102LT-17 PET bottle holder must be used. For glass bottles a special holder (FT102LT-17-SPL) can usually be provided.
FT102LT-10 Vacuum System
Used for both deaerating the product (prior to carbonating) and for evacuating the bottles prior to filling. It includes the vacuum pump, the addition of a deaeration surface in the chamber and all the valves and controls for both processes. The evacuation parameters are integrated seamlessly with the other filling functions on the operator interface panel and are saved as part of the normal filling data.
Note: The FT102LT-2, -4, and -10 options must be specified at initial purchase and cannot be added later.
The FT102LT filling system is directly compatible with that used on the FT102X. This enables the FT102LT to use the wide range of capping and filling accessories available for the FT102X.
FT102X-3 Crown Seal Capper (Requires FT102LT-2)
The standard FT102X-3 works with the majority of bottles and crown caps. For other bottles we can normally produce a special capper head, order code FT102X-3-SPL. Armfield can test your bottles free of charge for suitability. (includes 1 set of calipers).
FT102X-5 Centering Ring
The FT102X-5 is used to position the bottle centrally on the platform. Two of these acetal centering rings are included with each FT102X. These can be machined to suit the customer bottle size (if provided). Additional centering rings can be supplied for use with more bottle types. Order code: FT102X-5-ZZ where ZZ is the hole size in mm.
FT102X-6 Filling head for cans (up to 70mm diameter)
The standard FT102X-6 works with most cans, but some cans with unusual lips may need special attention. Armfield can test your cans free of charge for suitability.
FT102X-17 PET bottle support
Used to prevent crushing of containers during filling. The standard FT102X-17 works with most PET bottles with a 28mm nominal neck width. Armfield can test your bottles free of charge for suitability. For other bottles or different sizes we can produce a special support tailored to the bottle. Order code: FT102X-17-SPL.
FT102X-19 Filling head for larger bottle openings (25mm to 43mm)
The standard filling head provided with the FT102LT is suitable for bottles with an opening up to 25mm. The FT102X-19 enables bottles with a larger opening from 25mm to 43mm (O/D) to be filled.
FT102X-35 Filling tube (enables filling to a different headspace)
A replacement filling tube, which can be used to fill to a different headspace.
- Soft drinks
- Juices and cordials
- Health and nutritional products
0 - >10 g/l
18l (certified in accordance with the Pressure Equipment Directive) (15l product capacity)
316SS or food grade platinum cured silicone hose
CO2, N2 or any safe, non-flammable alternatives or mixture.
Water supply: Supply of chilled water at approx 3°C to 5°C below the carbonation temperature, @ 10 l/min
The Armfield FT63 is ideal for use with the FT102LT
Mains water @ 2 bar (min)
CO₂ supply with manual regulator, 6 bar
Compressed air supply with manual regulator, 6 bar