Amcor develops lightest hot fill PET bottle

Amcor Rigid Plastics has developed the industry's lightest 64oz hot fill polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottle, establishing a new standard for the size category.

The unique stock container for juices and teas delivers major sustainability advantages by utilising novel design, tooling, and process technologies to deduct 9g or 13.2% from the weight of a typical 68g PET bottle.

The patent-pending Powerblock 3.0 technology delivers a lightweight yet robust hot-fill stock PET bottle with superior filling and stacking performance. The container features a 38mm lightweight finish, which saves considerable material compared to the standard 43mm finish for 64oz PET bottles.

"The Powerblock 3.0 container is a major breakthrough because we achieved a highly sustainable packaging solution without compromising performance," said Michael Lane, Amcor principal engineer. "Our unique lightweight design retained line/stack handling performance and maintained ergonomic features for consumer handling."

Multiple utility and design patents are pending for this novel Powerblock 3.0 container. One patent covers an optimised conical base pushup with special diameter and height ratios and relationships. Another patent covers a round or rectangular base with strap-like features that are added to create a footed-style base. The segmented standing surface consists of four standing one-inch columns, which are lightweight, strong, and rigid.

Together, these technologies work synergistically to unlock material normally trapped in the base area. This allows for better material distribution in the container body, resulting in a lighter weight container without sacrificing performance. Angles, ratios, and other bottle geometry are optimized to obtain a balanced response to vacuum, pressure, and top load forces.

Powerblock 3.0 provides numerous benefits including multiple fill contact points and flat sides for added stability; optimised footprint (width and depth) for improved pallet pattern and corrugate savings; sustainability benefits including a reduced carbon footprint and transportation costs; and secure consumer handling with three intuitive areas for single-hand pouring.

Amcor applied its vast industry experience and advanced simulation programmes to develop the lightweight base technology. A number of virtual modeling techniques were utilised to effectively predict key performance parameters like quantified hot-fill characteristics and warehouse stack performance.

While Powerblock 3.0 is initially targeted for 64oz hot fill containers, Amcor expects to adapt the technology to other hot-fill bottles; it has completed all development and the stock bottle is already commercial in several locations across the US.


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