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Reply-RE: (All) Waste Prevention Technology

Ok Bob I can be quiet no longer.

Part of the "resistance" you are feeling is because of the hammering you give powder coating and UV coating.  Anybody who has been in this business has seen at least a couple of examples of where powder coating has made a "quantum leap" in waste reduction >90%.  In fact, when you think about it, asking the question "Why do we need solvents to paint?" is pretty radical.  It is an entirely different question to ask are these new technologies best in all situations, the obvious answer is no.

The perfect P2 implementation of no wastes means that in producing anything you do exactly what is required and no more.  This implies that you lose flexibility to do different things.  Look at painting.  I can paint anything any color I want using a solvent system.  That can not be said of any of the other paint systems.  To develop a wasteless system I have to determine exactly what I want the coating to do for what substrate, which will probably not work as well for other systems.  Take a look at your Helios technology, would it work just as well if you were laying down a variety of metals on a variety of substrates?  I think not.  

P2 requires matching material inputs, processes and desired outcomes.  Businesses that are perfectly adapted to their niches prosper as long as their niche exists.  Given general resistance to change, inefficient broad spectrum technologies have a great appeal in a changing world (give me a HVLP gun and solvent based paint and I'll do work for car companies, computer companies or ship builders).  Finding companies willing to invest in technology and more importantly training on a continuing bases is not always easy.

Rick Grote
(UW-Extension, Solid & Hazardous Waste Education Center and Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership)
610 Langdon, Room 530
Madison, WI 53703
Phone (608) 265-3055
FAX (608) 262-6250

-----Original Message-----
From:	rpojasek@sprynet.com [SMTP:rpojasek@sprynet.com]
Sent:	Wednesday, January 14, 1998 8:10 PM
To:	p2tech@great-lakes.net
Subject:	Re: (All) Waste Prevention Technology

Response to Alexander Ross,

Most firms still paint many colors.  They cannot affort the cycle time hit for 
cleaning out the booth between every color change.  Therefore there is STILL 
much waste powder paint to dispose of since the mixed colors do not blend but 
rather go on in a speckled version.  P2TECH had an extended discussion of this 
last year.  It is still a problem.  For the UV cure, what happens to the liquid 
that does not get on the part?

I have given some examples of entirely new processes that do what the old 
wasteful processes do (Helios technology at Polaroid and etchless printed wiring 
boards at Printron) with almost no wastes.  These DO NOT violate the laws of 
thermodynamics as environmental engineers would suggest.  I have found that 
industrial engineers and process engineers can be very good at eliminating waste 
with quantum leaps in technology if we just direct them to do so.  Incremental 
changes in efficiency seems to be the way we would rather see them go.  Is it 
because it is safer to do this?  I am getting real curious as to why there seems 
to be so much resistance to the use of technology to help eliminate waste from 
certain process operations.

Bob Pojasek

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