TETHERED CAP FROM FMDE
jet fighter technology
In three years' time loose closures and caps will be prohibited on bottles in Europe. Even before this decision, FM Design & Engineering (FMDE) by chance discovered a solution and developed a non-detachable cap against litter.This closure is suitable for beverage cartons and bottles. The technology used is inspired by the aviation industry.
Original dutch text: Harry van Deursen for verpakkingsmanagement
To avoid loose caps ending up into the environment, many companies have developed systems where the cap remains attached to the bottle by some sort of band or tether. The so-called "Tethered cap". Frank Kamper from FM Design and Engineering invented a patented geometry whereby the cap stays in contact with the screw thread during opening and closing and at the same time creates sufficient space for pouring out the product in the open position.
An internal stop in the mechanism ensures the maximum pouring opening at 180 degrees and prevents loosening of the cap. The cap remains in a fixed position after opening in contrast to a cap that is connected by a tether. This makes closing more convenient and prevents the cap from interfering with the pouring of the product.
JSF fighter jet
The system gives a special appearance to the packaging. Unlike the standard caps the FMDE cap turns obliquely upwards. Designer Frank Kamper explains: "The mechanism is based on the thrust vectoring control of the jet engine used in the JSF-B. The exhaust of the jet engine of the B variant moves in a similar kind of way up and down to be able to vertically take off or land." "The cap only needs half a turn to open and thanks to the combination of ridges on the edge and the oval shape you have much more grip on the closure and the opening goes very smoothly and easy. This also offers a solution to people with disabilities such as rheumatism and arthritis.”
A nice extra is the feeling when you open the cap. It is a strange sensation because a certain type of motion takes place that is completely unexpected. Anyone who had its hands on the concept/prototype keeps on opening and closing it.
Frank Kamper is aware of the trend in which brand owners are abandoning the plastic cap on dairy packaging and drink cartons. "From an environmental point of view it seems the appropriate choice to omit the plastic cap. The question is whether it will eventually going to deliver the intended environmental benefit.
If it comes to the shelf life of opened packs it will not be for the better. The suspicion is also that consumers are more likely to throw away opened packs without a cap which in turn produces more waste. For the elderly in our society it's back to square one due to the difficulty of opening packs without cap."
"Consumers will keep on choosing for convenience. Previous trials of a number of supermarkets with dairy packaging without cap have shown that if the consumer has a choice for packaging with or without cap, that choice is easily made."
"With the further developments of bio plastics and a cap concept like this one it may be justifiable after all in view of the environment that they remain in use on dairy and beverage cartons."
Looking for partners
FM Design and Engineering is looking for partners who want to engage the adventure into further developing this concept and applying it to their products.
Finally, Kamper: "One thing is certain, from a marketing perspective the first one to use this cap will be unprecedented distinguishable in the world of caps. "