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Robotised injection moulders are energy-efficient

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Presenting at Fakuma its energy-efficient injection moulding production and robotic systems innovation, Arburg provides individual consulting about process optimisation.

Robot loaded injection moulders are energy-efficient Presenting at Fakuma its energy-efficient injection moulding production and robotic systems innovation, Arburg provides individual consulting about process optimisation Arburg is to present all facets of its innovative injection moulding technology with ten exhibits at the Fakuma plastics show in Friedrichshafen, Germany, October 14-18, 2008.

The main focus of the Arburg stand, 3101 in Hall A3, will be energy-efficient injection moulding production and innovations in robotic machine tending systems.

‘Energy Efficiency Allround’ is an important Arburg corporate objective in 2008 and Arburg seeks to use its products and expertise to efficiently minimise customers’ energy consumption.

Arburg’s energy efficient Allrounders are identified by the ‘e2’ energy efficiency label.

Arburg also provides extensive individual consulting about process optimisation.

Arburg told manufacturingtalk that it is not only essential to minimise power and water consumption, or heat dissipation into the environment, but, for example, to optimise production capacity utilisation and ensure high injection moulding quality with a minimum reject rate.

* Energy efficient ‘Allrounder’ A and S series – four exhibition machines at the Fakuma bear the ‘e2’ energy efficiency label: two representatives of the electric Allrounder A series and two hydraulic Allrounder S series machines with electromechanical dosage drive.

On the electric two-component Allrounder 470 A with a clamping force of 1,000kN (100 tonf), a part in a hard/soft combination is produced from liquid silicone.

The two injection units are arranged in an L-configuration, so that a vertically-operating robotic system can move the pre-moulded part to the second cavity.

Arburg will demonstrate the high performance of its electric machines with a high-speed IML application.

Six high-quality, labelled yoghurt pots will be produced in an overall cycle time of four seconds.

In order to meet the requirements with regard to material preparation and speed, the Allrounder 570 A with a clamping force of 2,000kN (200 tonf) is equipped with integrated, adaptive hot runner control, a high-performance plasticising cylinder and a mould featuring a pneumatic needle shut-off system.

The complete IML automation equipment, provided by Waldorf Technik, includes feed, separation and placement of the labels, as well as removal and cavity-specific stacking of the pots.

Arburg will demonstrate how IML products can be produced rapidly, reliably and in high quality, as well as in large volumes.

The Allrounder 630 S, will be presented equipped with a 48-cavity bottle cap mould.

In order to achieve a high material throughput in a very short cycle time with this packaging application, the fully accumulator-driven hydraulic machine also features a high-performance plasticising cylinder and an energy-saving electromechanical dosage drive.

Electrical dosage is also implemented on the Allrounder 920 S with a clamping force of 5,000kN (500 tonf) and the largest, size 4,600 injection unit.

Note that the exhibition machine will be equipped with a Multilift V robotic system and integrated within a production cell.

A patented folding crate from Ifco Systems will be produced in a single cycle, removed by a robotic system and subsequently assembled automatically.

The sequence of this complex application is simply and reliably controlled via the Selogica user interface.

* Allrounder S – from large to small – the Allrounder 170 S has a clamping force of 150kN (15 tonf) and a size 30 clamping unit.

The exhibition machine will feature a 12mm screw and will process a micro granulate.

Following injection moulding, the finished micro gear wheels are removed by a horizontally-operating Multilift H robotic system.

* Flexible use of vertical Allrounder V – a further small machine will be the vertically-operating Allrounder 175 V with a clamping force of 125kN (12.5 tonf), which will be equipped with a servoelectric rotary table.

The two mould halves of the rotary table allow the insertion and removal of parts during the injection moulding process.

This machine can consequently easily be integrated into automated production lines.

The vertical Allrounder V machines with their free-space system are not only used for the encapsulation of inserts – as shown by the Allrounder 375 V with a clamping force of 500kN (50 tonf).

Introduced in Spring, 2008, this vertical machine will be presented at Fakuma in conjunction with the Exjection process from IB Steiner and Hybrid Composite Products.

This process can be used to produce long, thin-walled and structured components with integrated end caps and functional geometries, also using viscous thermoplastics.

Thanks to the horizontally-installed mould on the vertical Allrounder V machines, there are no limitations in terms of mould or stroke, Consequently, long part lengths result because the servo-controlled transfer movements are performed horizontally during the injection process.

The central Selogica control system conveniently programs and controls the complete system.

* Complex production cell with 6-axis robot – the Allrounder 570 S with a clamping force of 2,200kN (220 tonf) will also be presented for the first time at the fair.

This is a new machine size of the hydraulic Allrounder S machine series, which was first introduced at the K 2007 plastics exhibition.

Optimum processing of BMC moist polyester will be demonstrated on this exhibit through the production of an insulating rail for a domestic iron.

For this purpose, the Allrounder 570 S will be equipped with a position-regulated screw, a newly developed screw compression device for optimal material feed and an integrated mould heating system.

Thanks to feed pressure control specially developed for this application, the servo-motor driven feed screw of the screw/injester unit enables gentle and very consistent material preparation, even in the case of large shot weights.

The finished moulded parts are removed and subsequently processed fully automatically by a six-axis robot from Kuka.

* Selogica user interface implemented in robot control system – the integrated production cell automation communicates with the Selogica control system via the robot interface and additional fieldbus expansion.

In close co-operation with FPT, Kuka’s OEM partner, a Selogica user interface has been implemented in the robot control system.

It allows machine installation technicians to perform sequence programming of the complex 6-axis movements of the KUKA robot in their familiar injection moulding environment without using outside help.

Through the expanded real-time fieldbus connection, even complex mould entry operations are very easy to implement, said Arburg.

* Multilift V Select uses simple programming and offers extended application – a new teach-in function provides a simple and convenient programming of the servoelectric Multilift V Select robotic system.

Using manually performed sequences, the robotic system can learn the positions it has to move to in order to pick up and set down parts with the utmost precision, claimed Arburg.

Arburg will also present its ‘entry level’ Multilift V Select model on an Allrounder Golden Edition for the first time.

From autumn 2008, it will therefore also be possible to equip the Allrounder Golden Edition machines with an Arburg robotic system, extending the range of applications for the Multilift V Select.

In total, six Allrounders will operate with robotic systems at the Fakuma, a clear reflection of their increasing significance within complex injection moulding production.

In this context, an important role is played by integration into the machine control system.

This is achieved comprehensively via the Selogica user interface.

* Injection moulding production under control – increasingly important for reasons of economy in the future will be ensuring consistently high product quality, optimising production capacity utilisation, minimising downtime and thereby ultimately enhancing the energy efficiency of production, said Arburg.

How this objective can be achieved through centralised production planning and control will be demonstrated by Arburg on a production management stand using the Arburg host computer system, ALS.

ALS enables access to all ten Arburg exhibits at the Fakuma.

The Arburg host processing engineering team will demonstrate the benefits of ALS live and answer individual questions.

ALS offers a comprehensive overview of the entire production operations as well as rapid, secure access to current data relating to running injection moulding production.

ALS enables effective planning as well as implementation.

Its modular design uses independent modules, so the system can be flexibly customised.

Arburg said the system should be of interest to small injection moulding companies.

For example, machine and mould maintenance can be planned in a targeted manner, which is increasingly important in terms of preventive measures.

In addition to preventive maintenance, these also include oil analysis and machine calibration.

Both of these will be demonstrated and explained in practical terms by the Arburg Service Team at the exhibition stand.

* About Arburg – Arburg, a German machine construction company, is one of the leading global manufacturers of injection moulding machines for plastics processing with clamping forces between 125kN and 5,000kN (12.5-500 tonf).

Fields of application include the production of plastic parts for motor vehicles, communications and consumer electronics, medical technology, domestic appliances and packaging.

The product range is completed by robotic systems, complex projects and other peripherals.

Arburg’s operations are coordinated by an integrated management system and are DIN EN ISO 9001 and 14001 certified.

Arburg is represented by its own organisations in 23 countries at 31 locations and by trading partners in more than 50 countries.

However, the machines are produced exclusively in the parent factory in Lossburg (Germany) – with the mark of quality ‘made by Arburg – made in Germany’.

From a total of more than 2,000 Arburg employees, around 1,700 work in Germany.

Around 330 further employees work at the worldwide Arburg organisations.

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