Tsubakimoto Chain has recently announced the development of a new metal detectable plastic top chain. Designed mainly for conveyor applications in the food industry, the new product can be detected by a metal detector in the event that chips of broken chain get mixed in with food products. Ensuring effective measures to prevent contamination of food products is a major concern for food manufacturers. Not only do contamination accidents necessitate production line stoppages and incur huge costs, they also involve vast amounts of time and money to regain social trust.
Metal detectors are used as a measure for preventing contamination, but they are incapable of recognizing plastic materials, which pass through undetected. Using metal detectable additives in plastic materials has conventionally been problematic because such additives tend to make plastics prone to chipping and reduce their tensile strength. To solve these issues, Tsubaki has developed a plastic top chain which employs a new additive that mitigates the reduction of the plastic's physical properties and allows it to be detected by a metal detector in the event that chips of broken chain get mixed in with food products. The new product has been commercialized as a metal detectable plastic chain.