Techspan New Zealand report on ENGEL at Interplastica 2015
Tie-bar-less for maximum quality and efficiency
At Interplastica 2015 from January 27th to 30th in Moscow, everything will revolve around tie-bar-less technology on the ENGEL stand. More than 25 years ago, ENGEL became the first injection moulding machine manufacturer worldwide to develop a series of machines with a barrier-free clamping unit. Still today, this construction principle remains the key to maximum efficiency and minimum unit cost in many applications.
“The potential for increased efficiency is particularly great for applications that require a bulky mould, but only need a comparatively low clamping force,” emphasises Olaf Kassek, Director of OOO ENGEL in Moscow.
This category includes for example the production of threedimensional, complex parts or multiple-component processes that require core-pulls and sliders. As the tie-bar-less ENGEL victory and ENGEL e-victory machines allow for the platen surface to be used up to the edge or even beyond, much larger moulds can be mounted than on machines of the same clamping force with tie bars.
“If the decision is made for a tie-bar-less machine, we can realise many projects with a considerably smaller injection moulding machine than what the customer had originally calculated with on the basis of a machine with tie bars,” says Kassek. “Sometimes the machine size can be reduced by 50 percent.”
The benefits for the customer include lower investment and maintenance costs. Beyond that, the smaller machine requires less floor space, which is an important factor for efficiency for an increasing number of companies.
Control LIM-processes securely
During the trade show, ENGEL will be presenting the full potential of the tie-bar-less injection moulding machines live at their stand. An ENGEL e-victory 120 combi will be producing housings for flow-measurement sensors with an integrated silicon seal.
Because of its extremely low viscosity, the processing of liquid silicone poses high demands on the parallelism of the mould mounting platens, and in this respect, the tie-bar-less machines also play out their advantages.
“The construction of the tie-bar-less machines achieves a greater platen parallelism than injection moulding machines with tie bars,” says Olaf Kassek. “We can securely control LIM applications with the ENGEL victory and ENGEL e-victory machines, producing with few burrs and no reworking required.”
Above all two factors are responsible for this. First, thanks to three-point guidance, the moving mould mounting platen retains its orientation even while the mould is being opened and closed. And second, the stationary mould mounting platen is not connected to the machine at its bottom, but at the back side, in order to absorb the vibrations symmetrically and remain parallel to the moving platen during acceleration and deceleration. In addition, the patented Force Divider flexlink applies the force to the mould evenly across the entire platen face. Cavities lying at the outside edge of the platen are kept closed with precisely the same force as the cavities in the middle. This significantly reduces mould wear and increases product quality.
Standard instead of special solutions
On the injection unit side, the servo drive units provide for maximum precision. When very small injection volumes are involved in the area of LSR, special solutions are normally required. The ENGEL machine, however, can accomplish this with a standard drive unit. The ENGEL e-victory hybrid machine with electrical injection units is equipped with a servo-hydraulic clamping unit in the standard version. The servo-hydraulic ENGEL eco-drive ensures very efficient production even with a hydraulic drive unit. Depending on machine type and application, eco-drive reduces energy consumption by 30 to 70 percent. This is possible because energy loss is consistently avoided. When the machine is idle – during a cooling phase for example – the drive unit stops running and therefore does not consume any energy. As a positive side effect, significantly less heat is absorbed by the hydraulic oil, and the oil no longer needs to be cooled in many applications.
At the trade show, an ENGEL viper 20 linear robot will be removing the sensor housings from the mould and placing them on a conveyor belt. Because there are no tie bars to get in the way, the robot can access the mould area directly from the side, which allows automation of the injection moulding process even in production halls with low ceilings.
At the Interplastica, ENGEL will be dedicating an Expert Corner exclusively to its service products and optimisation tools. The main theme of the display will be intelligent mould temperature control. Mould temperature control has a significant influence on the productivity of the manufacturing process and on the quality of the moulded parts, but despite this, it is usually not given enough attention. ENGEL prompted a rethink when it developed ENGEL flomo in 2010. The compact temperature-control water distribution system has manual settings and can be integrated into a machine; electronic monitoring has increased process reliability and simplified process optimisation in more than a thousand new machines to date. ENGEL is now completing the step from process monitoring to process control. The newly developed ENGEL e-flomo features electrical control valves, which allow the flow rates to be adjusted and controlled in a fully-automated process.
“ENGEL e-flomo keeps the temperature in the mould constant throughout the production period, even where water pressure varies,” says Olaf Kassek. “This results in greater efficiency, process reliability and consistently high product quality.”
ENGEL at Interplastica 2015: Hall 3, Stand B09
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