Technology Showcase (June 01, 2005)
Extruder designed for high performance applications
Davis-Standard Corporation has introduced the 250mm (10-inch), 30:1 extruder, which is built for high-throughput applications and efficient operation. Its design offers several advantages, such as eight temperature control zones for heating and cooling, a high-torque gearbox with two input shafts for running two motors on one screw shaft and an easily accessible, one-piece welded steel base. There are a variety of screw designs available for processing a range of polymers, including HDPE, PET and PP. The large extruder’s construction makes it ideal for demanding applications such as thick sheet. The machine features two drive motors, one on each side, directly connected by couplings to the input shaft of a three-stage, high-torque gear case. The feed section, flanged to the gearbox, is sized for high throughputs and equipped with cool- ing channels. The one-piece, bimetallic-lined barrel is positioned on two supports to maintain alignment while allowing for thermal expansion.
Stephen Sales Group 905-940-5577 Auxiplast Inc. (QC) 450-922-0282
Filter protects pump from damage
AEC Inc. presents the durable AFC-S Series Central Vacuum Safety Filter for dust and fine collection. It is easy to operate, manage and maintain. The unit operates as part of a central conveying system and is controlled by the central conveying panel. The durable central filter is made of corrosion and abrasion resistant stainless steel and cast aluminum. The transparent plexiglass collection chamber is easily removed by quick disconnects. The cleaning of the integrated filter is accomplished automatically with compressed air blowback. The AFC-S offers such standard features as a filter surface area of 50 sq ft and is rated for systems up to 300 cfm.
Dier International 905-474-9874
Sensor amp speeds molding cycle
Kistler Instrument has added a new option to its Smart Amp type 5155A, used in molding systems to control the shot process during injection molding. A new automatic cooling time calculation is performed by the sensor amplifier to eliminate guesswork and manual timing adjustments. The optimum cooling time is determined and this signal is sent to the injection molding machine. The result is faster cycling and a cooling time that maximizes product quality. This option joins an automatic viscosity compensation feature that improves operation by producing control signals that maximize quality based on the melt temperature.
Kistler Instrument Corporation www.kistler.com
High-speed, reliable sprue picker
Offered at price points said to be highly competitive, the KX Sprue Picker line provides benefits of high-speed action (0.7 seconds per take out), flexible, on-the-fly adjustment and multiple program sequence selections. With a minimal footprint, the picker can be mounted directly on an injection molding machine. It’s available in four sizes: The KX-450 is designed to operate with up to 80 ton presses; the KX-600 with presses ranging from 80-120 tons; the KX-800 for 150-300 ton presses; and the KZ-1000 for presses ranging from 250-400 tons. The vertical stroke ranges from 17.7 inches to 39 inches, depending on the size of the sprue picker.
The sprue picker offers a full array of standard features, including easy-to-program operator pendant and positive in-the-grip runner sensing. Processors can choose an optimal 90-degree wrist roll and an optional vacuum generator if the manufacturing line requires it.
Automated Assemblies Corporation 978-368-8914
New low-cost temperature control
The new electronic controls on the latest generation of low-cost Thermolator temperature control units, from Conair, combine the functionality of temperature-indicating controls (TIC) with many of the user-friendly features of programmable logic controllers (PLC). The new hybrid represents a significant technical advance over previous entry-level controls, and yet it costs less and is easier to install, which allows Conair to reduce the price of the new base Thermolator units.
The controls’ four push buttons enable all the set-up, operational and troubleshooting functions, and instructions are clearly presented on the user interface panel. The large LED display can show the setpoint and actual temperatures from the ‘to-process’ and ‘from-process’. The new Thermolator TCU can control the process from either of these inputs, as well as the ‘centre’ of the process (the average of the ‘to process’ and ‘from process’ sensors). These features are normally only available on top-of-the-line controls. If the sensor being used to control the process should fail (out of range alarm), the system will automatically cascade to control from the ‘to process’ sensor (assuming that it’s operating properly). If the ‘to process’ sensor fails, the system shuts down automatically.
Stephen Sales Group 905-940-5577
Auxiplast Inc. 450-922-0283
Color software facilitates QC
HunterLab’s EasyMatch QC software provides unprecedented flexibility to collect, display and analyze color data from a HunterLab spectrophotometer. It is easy to use and can be configured to show only the information you want. Color data is displayed numerically in spreadsheet form or graphically as color plots, spectral plots and trend plots. The simplified EZ View screen only shows data for the standard and the last sample measured and, if desired, Pass/Fail. Color Render visually simulates the color on your computer screen. EasyMatch QC uses job files to easily store and recall data. Jobs can be created for your individual customers or products, and each job can include individual or multiple standards. An unlimited number of samples can be associated with each standard so you are able to maintain a history of your process over time.
Hunter Associates Laboratory, Inc. 703-471-6870
Software enhances I/M monitoring
With the release of Moldflow Manufacturing Solutions 2.0, there are a number of new enhancements to the Shotscope Production Manager feature used for process and production monitoring of the injection molding process. One of the enhancements allows users to monitor injection molding machines with more than one injection barrel. This new multi-barrel support enables users to fully implement Shotscope in a heterogeneous production environment of single and multi-barrel equipment, resulting in the ability to improve production efficiency and decrease rejection rates across a broader range of equipment.
Moldflow Corporation www.moldflow.com
Accurate scanner for barrier film
One way of maintaining blown film quality when barrier layers are co-extruded is with real-time gauge control, which is most effective when thickness data are quickly transmitted to a process controller. Battenfeld Gloucester Engineering Co. Inc., has developed an innovative scanner for barrier film that is accurate and capable of rapid data transmission to a process controller. Called the O-Frame Scanner, it uses a fixed beta gauge for noncontact measurement of multilayer film. The scanner is effective with all barrier resins, regardless of film temperature, and is capable of providing real-time control through the company’s patented Extrol process controller.
The O-Frame Scanner mounts between the oscillating haul-off and secondary nip, measuring the collapsed layflat. Its beta gauge is enclosed within a rectangular frame (the O-Frame) through which film passes prior to separation. The sensor accurately scans both sides of the film and begins transmitting data after only a 90 rotation of the oscillating hauloff. The O-Frame Scanner is thus not only accurate, but begins relaying process control data significantly faster than other sensors, in as litt
le as five to six minutes, well before the hauloff completes its first revolution.
Battenfeld Gloucester Engineering Co. Inc. www.bge.battenfeld.com
Economical robot designed for versatility
Wittmann has introduced the 7-series linear robots with the model W721 Compact S3, which offers a maximum payload of 22 lb and is equipped as standard with three highly dynamic servo drives, allowing for very fast, coordinated motion of all numeric axes. In order to minimize the critical part removal time within the mold open area, special attention was given to the design of the vertical arm, resulting in a stiff, lightweight construction for fast, vibration-free motion.
The robot delivers a superior cost-to-performance ratio, which until a few years ago was only achievable with very expensive high-speed servo packages. All three compact servo modules are directly mounted on the kick-stroke axis, and the few remaining and highly integrated switching and safety boards are placed in a small housing behind the horizontal axis.
Nucon Wittmann, Inc. 416-213-5556
TPEs approved for use in medical devices
GLS Corporation has announced that two of the company’s thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) grades, Dynaflex G2706 and G2711, are now ISO 10993 certified TPEs. The certification means that these TPEs are now considered compliant for medical devices. For areas outside the United States, ISO 10993 certification is regarded as the corresponding standard to USP Class VI. In addition to passing ISO regulations, the Dynaflex G2706 is engineered to exhibit a soft touch and rubbery feel with a Shore A hardness of 28A. The material has excellent colorability and strong overmolding adhesion to polypropylene. The grade also exhibits good ozone and UV stability. Like G2706, Dynaflex G2711 features a soft, rubbery feel with excellent colorability, but with 43 Shore A hardness. The grade is a good choice for overmolding to polypropylene, and also has excellent ozone and UV stability.
GLS Corporation www.glscorp.com