Energy efficiency, automation and QS-systems for LSR-, rubber- and TPE-processing in focus
Ternitz (A), 31.07.2012: At the Fakuma 2012 Maplan from Ternitz (A) presents three compact and energy-efficient elastomer-processing machines, as well as the latest generation of machine controllers, the PC5000touch V3. This year the technical highlight is, according to technical division manager Rudolf Eisenhuber, a liquid silicone rubber application (Liquid Silicone Rubber – LSR): a horizontal MHF400/200edition with SILjector-injection unit for LSR. Two further machines address the processing of TPE: the vertically clamping MTF220P/160editionS and a MTTF100P/40C in C-frame construction for corner overmoulding. With the focus on TPE-applications, Maplan as always reacts to increasingly higher customer demand for also thermoplastic machines of various sizes and design. Enquiries concerning these machines come from various areas:
• Automotives: window overmoulding, static sealing elements, door seals, and other various parts.
• Military and public authorities: Parts of personal protection gear (protection mask)
• Electrical industry: cable and plug assembly
• technical articles: e.g. bellows
Maplan covers a variety of requirements set by the processers with its modular system. With it, one can combine TPE injection units up to size 350 with clamping units ranging between 270 – 4000kN. All Maplan machines for TPE processing are equipped with CoolDrive II-drives as standard.
The machine manufacturer from Lower Austria is having increasing success with machine technology from its modular system, which accommodates both the requirements of vulcanization and the processing of TPE. Maplan is well equipped to follow an obvious trend in elastomer processing: “especially in the case of automotives we can discern the increasing importance of TPE driven by cost and an increase in TPE applications in general. Without energy-efficient and compact solutions – effectively straight from the construction kit – we try to do both worlds justice and to offer the potential of added value for injection moulding and vulcanisation,” Rudolf Eisenhuber explains.
Horizontal MHF400/200edition with the SILjector-injection unit for LSR
The MHF400/200edition exhibit with 2.000kN clamp force includes the latest generation of control devices, the PC5000touch V3 with a number of new features. A high-precision SILjector-injection unit working according to the FIFO-principle with active backflow barrier and greatest dosing accuracy at 100ccm dosage volume is employed for LSR-processing. The unit is available with a volume of 100, 200 and 400ccm and built extremely compactly. The way the SILjector-injection unit is constructed allows a simple and fast cleaning of the machine for fast rubber compound change. The injection pressure is 2.041 bar for the 100ccm-version. Optional for this LSR-process is a hydraulic needle shut-off nozzle, which is specifically tempered (liquid-cooled/ -heated). With this application Maplan positions itself in relation to LSR. The LSR dosage system TOP3000S comes from Elmet. The machine is equipped with a hydraulic lifting unit, a central ejector and an active control of a double hydraulic needle shut-off nozzle. The 2-cavity-mould has been built by Ro-Ra Moulds. Liquid silicone rubber bracelets will be produced. In order to address the topic of automation, a Wittman servo-robot W818 with removal gripper by Ro-Ra is employed the remove the bracelets. “In the foreground,” Eisenhuber claims, “are automation, small footprint of the machine of 3.6m² and high energy efficiency with our DCI-tempering units.” Analogous to the vertical injection moulding machines, horizontal machines are also available as “edition” and “edition-S” versions at Maplan. Currently available are models with 100, 200, 300 and 400 tons clamp force.
Energy-efficient TPE-vertical machine with high repeatability
The vertically clamping holm-constructed MTF220P/160editionS with CoolDrive II-drive shown in Friedrichshafen emphasizes what the elastomer-experts from Austria are all about: a high-precision FIFO-injection unit with a dosage volume of 220ccm and a ratio of 22:1 ensures an outstanding dosage precision. With a footprint of a ‘slim’ 2.4m², the footprint-optimized edition series offers incredibly high performance while requiring only very little space. However, the focus is entirely on energy efficiency: “The servo-hydraulic CoolDrive II, already standard equipment of the ‘editionS’ version, enables energy savings of up to 70% when compared to conventional machine drives,” Eisenhuber explains. Even the noise level of this drive concept sets new standards. The energy saving versions of DCI tempering devices guarantee the optimum temperature control of the tool throughout the cycle. What remains is its application: produced will be the inner part of a protection mask made of thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) with a single-cavity mould by Tris Stampi from Montelupone (Italy). All machines of the “editionS” series – up to a clamp force of 4000kN- are available with optional injection units for thermoplastic elastomer (TPE).
C-frame construction for corner overmoulding with TPE
As third exhibit, Maplan displays a MTTF100P/40C in C-frame construction (401 kN clamp force). Equipped with the current control version, the PC5000touch V3, and the energy-saving CoolDrive II-drive, this machine also includes a hydraulic lifting unit and a hydraulic mould run out for the best process design possible. This is a vertical elastomer machine that injects and clamps from top. The holmless C-frame is characterized by its small footprint of 2.3m² and its very high rigidity. Maplan C-frame machines offer many advantages, especially when it comes to ergonomics and handling: they allow the operator free access to the mould mounting area. Machines of this kind are predestined for corner vulcanization, sealing elements, molded parts, end caps and two-component parts. As an alternative to vulcanization, there will also be a TPE version in the shape of a thermoplastic-compatible injection unit exhibited at the Fakuma. The tool comes from Henniges Automotive. “Corner vulcanization is a key word under which we will show at the Fakuma that we provide modular solution for elastomers as well as for TPE,” Rudolf Eisenhuber states. Again, the Maplan injection unit with a dosage volume of 100ccm defines the standards when it comes to performance and precision.
C 0 (lead picture): Horizontal MHF400/200edition with SILjector-injection unit for LSR
C 1: Energy efficiency meets repeatability: vertical MTF220P/160editionS
C 2: Ergonomics and handling in view: MTTF100P/40C for corner overmoulding with TPE
C 3: Rudolf Eisenhuber, technical division manager: “Especially in the case of automotives we can discern the increasing importance of TPE driven by cost and an increase in TPE applications in general. Without energy-efficient and compact solutions – effectively straight from the construction kit – we try to do both worlds justice in order to set standards for injection moulding and vulcanisation.”
C 4: SILjector- injection unit built according to the FIFO-principle with active backflow barrier and greatest dosage accuracy for LSR-processing
All pictures with source “Maplan GmbH (A)”