Yesterday (May 28), the organizer of UNICERAMICS EXPO held a forum on the 2020 year trend of the decoration technology for large format tiles. The theme of the forum is “To Make Large Tile Flawless”. Delegates from various enterprises in the ceramic industry and several industry associations attended the forum.
The forum was divided into three parts, each of which was hosted respectively by Mr. Huang Xinhong, Chief Expert of China Building Materials Circulation Association, Mr. Huang Huining, Deputy Director and Vice Secretary General of Guangdong Ceramic Association and Foshan Ceramic Society, and Mr. Li Xinliang, President of Ceramic Town Weekly.
The forum also invited relevant masters in the decoration technology field including the Chief Engineer of Nabel Ceramic Tile, Deputy President of Monalisa Ceramics, Deputy President of New Pearl Ceramics, President of Durst China, General Managers from XAAR Asia, New King Time Ceramic Machinery, Meijia Ceramic Machinery, Boffin Mechanical & Electrical, Kehai Glaze, Sapfit Technology, Nengqiang Group, and ect.
Fast Growing Market for Ceramic Slabs
Relevant Standards Are Being Made
In the opening speech, Mr. Chen Huan, President of Guangdong Ceramic Association said that the market of large format tile in China was growing fast in the recent two years and Chinese ceramic enterprises had been speeding up the building of production lines responsively. (According to incomplete statistics by CTW, China will have 75 large tile production lines in 2021.) Mr. Chen summarized four key points in the development of large format tile: standardization, security in application, further processing, and cross-industry mindset.
According to Mr. Chen, the standardization of large ceramic tile in construction techniques had been completed in 2018. And since last year, Guangdong Ceramic Association had launched the project of editing standards for making large format ceramic tiles, which was supported by more than 40 enterprises.
“Large format tile has enormous market space not only in the area of traditional architectural decoration, but also in the newly expanding modular buildings. ” said the Mr. Chen.
Photo: Mr. Chen Huan
More and More Enterprises Involved
Ceramic Slabs Are Considered Trendy
In our previous article, we calculated that there were about 42 large tile production lines currently under construction or planned to be built in China. The honored guests invited to the forum also disclosed their plans to build large tile production lines as well as shared their experiences in dealing with this type of products.
Photo: Mr. Jian Runtong
Mr. Jian Runtong, Deputy President of New Pearl Ceramics said:
“At present, New Pearl has two large tile production lines under construction. In the plan, our producing capability of large tiles should reach 70 thousand square meters per day. Actually since 2002, New Pearl has been producing ceramic tiles of 1200 mm x 1800 mm. Only until 2017, we officially started to promote this type of products. Large tile is a hit in China now, so we decided to enhance our producing capability to meet the needs of the market.”
Photo: Mr. Yu Aimin
Mr. Yu Aimin, Deputy President and General Engineer of Nabel Ceramics said:
“This year, the newly launched full-body porcelain tile series by Nabel is produced through digital feeding system. The combination of digitization and glazing makes porcelain tiles have full-body textures which perform outstandingly in mimicking the texture of stones. Besides, Nabel has the largest size of the product-- 1600 mm x 4800 mm. We imported the press with 44 thousand tonnage and produce porcelain slabs, which have competitive advantages when applied as countertop, for the realization of full body gives the slabs excellent crash-resistance. ”
Photo: Mr. Liu Yijun
Mr. Liu Yijun, Deputy President of Monalisa Ceramics said:
“In 2007, Monalisa introduced Keda’s press with a 6800 tonnage to product tiles with 5.5 mm thickness. And since 2009, we have been able to produce tiles with 3.5 mm thickness. In 2019, Monalisa has produced slabs with sizes of 900 mm x 1800 mm, 1600 mm x 3600 mm and thicknesses of 5.5 mm and 3.5 mm. As far as i can see, the most obvious changes in the development of ceramic tiles lie in the sizes and thicknesses, which at the same time bring more possibilities for the application of ceramic tiles. In the aspect of surface decoration, ceramic tiles can present any texture and color as the stones do, especially with the development of technology in digital glazing and more advanced print heads. I am absolutely optimistic about it.”
Photo: Mr. Zeng Junhua
Mr. Zeng Junhua, Executive Assistant of Nengqiang Ceramics said:
“Nengqiang Group is building four production lines of ceramic slabs. Probably at the end of July, our new producing lines of larger-sized slabs will be ready for production. The two production lines of medium-sized slabs of 900 mm x 1800 mm, 800 mm x 1700 mm, and 700 mm x 1300 mm have been in operation now.”
Photo: Mr. Huang Wangming
Mr. Huang Wangming, Production Manager of Goldmedal Ceramics said:
“Our second large format tile production line has been prepared this month and will be put into full operation next month. We will debut our new products of large size tile with a thickness of 3 mm in July, if the R&D goes well. ”
Photo: Mr. Liu Jiaxing
Mr. Liu Jiaxing, Deputy President of Marshal Ceramics said:
“Marshal Ceramics is building ceramic slab production lines too. Our large size tiles will be on debut around August and September.”
Technology Developing Fast
Chinese Machines Are As Well Reliable
Regarding the development of technology in the surface decoration of ceramic slabs, most of the experts believed that the machinery and equipment made in China was more than able to meet the needs of the present market.
Photo: Mr. Liang Haiguo
Mr. Liang Haiguo, General Manager of Boffin Mechanical & Electricali said:
“In 2016, we officially announced the digitization of our feeding products. Now, we have developed the third-generation feeding machines which can be applied to 1200 mm x 2400 mm slabs. Our goal is to make ceramic tiles an absolute alternative to stones. Our third-generation feeding machines can realize any patterns within 5 mm. However, they cannot guarantee the definition is as high as by inkjet. We are working on it and hope that one day, we can make ceramic tiles have the textures of marbles.”
Photo: Mr. Liu Jinwen
Mr. Liu Jinwen, General Manager in Sales of Hope Ceramic Machinery said:
“In the past, some customers worried that if they used imported press, they would have to use imported inkjet accordingly. As a matter of fact, Hope Ceramic Machinery’s digital inkjet has been able to reach a width of two meters in 2018. Now, we are leading the technology.”
Photo: Mr. Peng Jichang
Mr. Peng Jichang, General Manager of New King Time Ceramic Machinery said:
“The larger the slab is, the easier to see the defects. For example, in order to realize the carpet texture on large slabs, we struggled at first in figuring out a feasible color solution because the tile was so big. But we sorted it out eventually with a moving glazing technology. Our technology is head to head with that in the developed countries.”
This is the 388th issue.