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During the five days of the fair, under actual production conditions and at a cycle time of under 2.5 seconds, the production cell will deliver 26-mm caps made of HDPE and including tamper-proof bands. The system scores with outstanding energy efficiency and highest degree of process consistency. At the core of the highly integrated solution is an ENGEL e-cap 2440/380 injection moulding machine with a clamping force of 3800 kN. A 96-cavity mould by Corvaglia from Eschlikon in Switzerland will be used. ENGEL has integrated additional peripherals into the system including a DMS dry-air system by Blue Air Systems (Kundl, Austria), a TWIN model cap inspection system by IMDvista (Brügg, Switzerland), and material handling units by Piovan (S. Maria di Sala VE, Italy). The hot-runner temperature control is made by S.i.S.e. (Oyonnax, France), and partners for the raw materials are Borealis, (Vienna, Austria) and Gabriel Chemicals (Gumpoldskirchen, Austria).
"In terms of geometry, beverage caps have reached their lightweighting minimum. This means that the demands on the precision and repeatability of injection moulding machines are higher than ever before", says Frank Schuster, Sales Director of ENGEL packaging, describing a trend that is often decisive in the design of injection moulding machines and production cells for cap production. In addition, the sensitivity of producers to energy efficiency continues to increase. In order to meet both challenges, ENGEL is focusing on all-electric high performance machines for cap production. With clamping forces of 1,100 to 4,200 kN, the ENGEL e-cap series was developed specifically for this market segment.
Among other things, the high-performance servo direct drives are responsible for the outstanding process stability and precision of the e-cap injection moulding machines. They ensure the required plasticising capacity and a maximum of usable parts even when using the new high-strength HDPE materials with a MFI significantly lower than 2 or even 1 g/10 min. In addition, the increased ejection and clamping forces help to achieve very short cycle times. In spite of its impressive performance, the e-cap requires very little energy and cooling water, even at constant high-speed.
As a complete system, the production cell represents the state-of-the-art in highly efficient cap production. Both Blue Air Systems and IMDvista will be presenting their latest innovations at the ENGEL booth. The DMS series devices by Blue Air Systems allow for higher product quality and energy savings of up to 85 percent as compared to conventional mould dehumidifiers. What makes this series special is that it works without water. Without pre-cooling, it guarantees condensation-free production conditions regardless of the weather and the climate zone.
With its TWIN flying closure system, IMDvista has solved one of the biggest challenges in the inline-inspection of beverage caps. Usually, the freshly produced caps undergo camera inspection while lying on a conveyor belt. This means that the top side of the caps cannot be viewed by the cameras. With the new technology, caps are lifted by a stream of air, and can thus be inspected from above and below without extending processing time.
From a single source, ENGEL delivers highly integrated and automated system solutions for the production of bottle caps worldwide. This results in several advantages for the producer. For one thing, efficiency and quality potentials can only be fully utilised when the individual components of the production cell have been precisely synchronised from the start. Apart from that, the systems solution accelerates project planning and commissioning due to the fact that the producer does not need to coordinate various suppliers.
In addition to the injection moulding machine, automation, peripherals, and mould, software products for digitalisation and networking are more and more often part of the package. "Industry 4.0 is opening up huge opportunities for even higher efficiency and quality", clarifies Schuster. "We support our customers in realising this potential."
Under the inject 4.0 name, ENGEL offers a comprehensive range of products and solutions for the three areas of the smart factory. The first products entered the market many years ago and have become well-established worldwide. ENGEL is consistently developing the inject 4.0 programme and will clearly demonstrate its new opportunities and possibilities at the Drinktec 2017. Among other things, the focus will be on MES authentig.
In order to be able to monitor and analyse the current condition of individual machines from a central computer, including their utilisation and output, all the production units are interconnected through the Manufacturing Execution System. Transferred in real-time, their data can be correlated to both quality and business performance indicators, and analysed in various ways. Tailored to the specific requirements of the injection moulding industry, authentig achieves particularly deep vertical data integration, down to the level of individual cavities.
authentig was developed by T.I.G. Technische Informationssysteme GmbH, which has now been part of the ENGEL Group for a year. With the integration of T.I.G. into the ENGEL Group, the companies have combined their MES know-how and their many years of experience with MES projects worldwide, thereby achieving innovation at an even higher pace.