(Munich/Düsseldorf, October 16, 2013) KraussMaffei's vast machine portfolio and extensive processing expertise in injection molding, reaction process machinery and automation technology make it one of the leading technological experts in plastic processing machine engineering. The company will use its comprehensive knowledge to inform visitors at K 2013 in Düsseldorf (October 16-23, hall 15, B27/C24/C27/D24) about the numerous ways in which they can make their production more efficient and their injection molding machinery more energy-efficient. The experts at KraussMaffei will offer advice about choosing the right production process, the most energy-efficient complete system and how to optimize individual consumers, all based on the part or end product being manufactured.
"KraussMaffei offers customers versatile options for making their production more efficient, lowering their energy consumption and decreasing their number of work steps by combining different processes in a logical way," explains Frank Peters, Vice President of Sales at KraussMaffei. The IMKS process (integrated metal/plastic injection molding) can be used to over-mold parts with a metal component. The easy flowing material allows to contact, for example, LED electrodes directly by overmolding. This means that parts come out of the injection molding machine finished and fully functional. The KraussMaffei injection molding compounder (IMC) combines an extruder with an injection molding machine to offer users a whole host of benefits, such as lower material costs and greater production flexibility thanks to compounds that can be produced individually. Visitors to K 2013 will be able to see a GXW-series ColorForm production cell, comprising a swivel plate and injection molding machine with a clamping force of 5500 kN, live in action. The machine paints the finished part inside the mold as part of the process, rather than the part being subsequently painted outside the machine as normal. This significantly reduces the number of work steps and makes the customer's production not only more efficient but also less energy-consuming.
What makes a production process energy efficient is having the individual machine components work together in the best possible way. This is why all machines in the GX series are equipped with PowerPack drive systems, complete with state-of-the-art variable delivery pumps and motors, which significantly improve the machine's effectiveness. The optional use of "Blue Power Servo Drive" technology further optimizes energy consumption compared with variable delivery pumps. Depending on the application, energy savings can amount to as much as 50 percent compared with conventional hydraulic concepts. Production can also be made more efficient through the use of electronically controlled water distributors close to the mold. These are fully integrated into the machine control system for monitoring the pressure, temperature and throughput, which enables users to monitor the cooling of the mold together with the injection process. Installing the water distributors close to the mold enables the loss of pressure in the media supply to be reduced, which in turn lowers the energy consumption of the heating units, for example.
The fact that the purchasing price of energy is increasing significantly makes it extremely important to obtain and manage accurate energy consumption data promptly, as it allows the production process to be controlled in an optimal way. MC6 control software enables users to activate functions for managing loads and limiting peak loads. The peak-load limitation function is used to start up machinery in a coordinated way and periodically reduce energy consumption. When this function is activated, it will not allow any more energy consumers on the injection molding machine to be switched on. All KraussMaffei machines on the trade show stand have an integrated energy measuring system and can transfer the energy consumption values to the energy management system. They are also able to receive control signals and convert them into a machine-processable format. At K 2013, the company will be demonstrating an energy management system with the key analyses, such as actual value visualization, KPIs and live reporting. The load management function will also be demonstrated at the trade show.
KraussMaffei has completed the necessary energy measurements and simulations for classifying its range of machines according to Euromap 60. Customers can now see the results. The revision of these guidelines has made it possible to compare injection molding machines of different designs and from different manufacturers in terms of their expected energy consumption. ”But part-specific measurements with customer molds will still be valid and often carried out in addition”, points Peters out, “so that processors will have accurate information about the actual part available.
In order to not only improve process stability and part quality but also reduce scrap rates and manual intervention in the production process, KraussMaffei offers a batch adjustment control system for injection molding machines. To compensate for variations in the viscosity of the melt caused by different material batches or differences in residual moisture in the raw material, the maximum pressure inside the mold is immediately held and the holding pressure profile automatically adjusted when it exceeds specified limits.
The machine control system also plays a decisive role in how efficient a production line is. The new MC6 control system is so straightforward and intuitively designed that users can work faster and more efficiently than ever before. In-keeping with the energy-efficient overall machine concept, process integration, energy-efficient hydraulic components and pumps, the MC6 control system has a so-called EcoButton. This allows users to put the machine in its most energy-efficient settings at the touch of the button. This achieves average energy savings of five to nine percent in practice.
KraussMaffei actively supports the sustainability initiative set up by the VDMA (German Engineering Federation). The VDMA and KraussMaffei – together with other machine manufacturers – are organizing an extraordinary public demonstration of injection molding machines in Düsseldorf while the trade show is taking place. The campaign is called "The Blue Horse" and it will take place in Heinrich-Heine-Platz. Three machines will make a Playmobil horse with saddle, head collar and reins in order to show how efficient today's machines are compared with those that were used to produce the very first Playmobil figures in the 1970s.