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Injection Molding.

The millennium's first NPE NPE NullPointerException (Java)
NPE Network Processing Engine
NPE National Policy on Education
NPE National Plastics Exposition
NPE Natural Penis Enlargement
NPE Nutrition Program for the Elderly
 ushered in a new crop of all-electric and hybrid machines, including the world's biggest all-electric machine, the world's fastest, and the first in a tiebarless design. Plenty of standard machines were also introduced, including several toggle To alternate back and forth between two states.

toggle - To change a bit from whatever state it is in to the other state; to change from 1 to 0 or from 0 to 1. This comes from "toggle switches", such as standard light switches, though the word "toggle" actually refers to
 lines and a new hydraulic-clamp series for budget-conscious processors.

New PET preform pre·form  
tr.v. pre·formed, pre·form·ing, pre·forms
1. To shape or form beforehand.

2. To determine the shape or form of beforehand.

 presses, vertical insert molders, and multi-component designs were also on display. There was also plenty of news in touchscreen PC controls. (New robots and hot runners will be covered in future issues.)

Electric Models Hum

Clean, quiet, energy-efficient electric machines were the stars of the show. As previously announced, Ube Machinery Inc., Ann Arbor Ann Arbor, city (1990 pop. 109,592), seat of Washtenaw co., S Mich., on the Huron River; inc. 1851. It is a research and educational center, with a large number of government and industrial research and development firms, many in high-technology fields such as , Mich., brought to the show the biggest all-electric machine yet built--a 1550-tonner that turned out to be the largest press of any kind at the show. Ube is now planning a 2000-tonner for bumper fascias. [Circle 21]

And as we reported last month, Milacron Fanuc, Batavia, Ohio Batavia is a village in Clermont County, Ohio, United States. The population was 1,617 at the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Clermont CountyGR6. Geography
Batavia is located at  (39.077332, -84.
, introduced the 110-ton Supershot 100I, the world's first machine to use linear servo motors. It boasts injection speeds up to 2000 mm/sec, previously unattainable without an accumulator. [Circle 22]

Another first was a tiebarless all-electric machine being developed by Engel Canada Inc., Guelph, Ont. Tiebarless design is said to raise the already high-precision capability of electric machines another notch. The prototype 110-ton model at the show was a high-speed, high-pressure model said to provide overall dry cycles of 0.85 sec. It generates up to 30,000 psi injection pressure and injection speeds to 200 mm/sec. Engel plans to introduce the machine commercially early in 2001 and to follow it with 55-ton and 165-ton models.

Three models make up a new all-electric line from Fortune International Inc., a Taiwanese producer with an office in Somerset, N.J. The new V[alpha] series comes in 55, 88, and 110 tons. [Circle 24]

Several other firms spoke of electric machines still in development:

* Netstal Machinery Inc., Devens, Mass., aims to introduce a version for compact discs next year.

* Three electric machines of 50, 150, and 300 tons are being developed by the Korean parent of LG International (America) Inc., Eaglewood Cliffs, N.J. The firm expects to roll out one new model a year, starting with the 50-tonner next year.

* Van Dorn Demag Corp., Strongsville, Ohio Strongsville is a city in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States. The population was 43,858 as of the 2000 Census. The current mayor, Thomas Perciak, was elected in November 2003 following the death of longtime mayor Walter F. Ehrnfelt in May. , is developing an all-electric machine based on its new Integra toggle series (see below). Sizes will range from 50 to 625 tons. The first unit should be available early next year.

* After just rolling out five new all-electric models in its EC line, Toshiba Machine Co., America, Elk Grove Village Elk Grove Village, village (1990 pop. 33,429), Cook and Du Page counties, NE Ill., a suburb of Chicago; inc. 1956. With a population of c.100 at the time of its establishment on open farmland, the village has grown dramatically and steadily, largely because of its , Ill., will extend the top end of the range (currently 386 tons) with models of 500 and 610 tons by the second quarter of 2001.

* Ube plans to build its first electric multi-component machine in the near future. The 720-tonner has been ordered by a U.S. automotive molder for hard/soft overmolding.

* Krauss-Maffei Corp., Florence, Ky., is developing an all-electric machine for rollout next year.

Hybrid Line Debuts

Returning to its roots in electric machine design, Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd Husky Injection Moulding Systems Ltd was founded by Robert Schad, a German immigrant who came to Canada in 1951 with $25 borrowed from an uncle and a letter from a family friend by the name of Albert Einstein. ., Bolton, Oat., unveiled its Hylectric machine, which has a servo-driven screw but is otherwise based on Husky's hydromechanical-clamp S Series. The first two models of 99 and 176 tons will be followed over the next year with models from 55 to 1100 tons.

Small, Budget-Priced Line

A slimmed-down price is the main attraction of the new Vista Edge series of fully hydraulic horizontal presses from Ferromatik Milacron, Batavia, Ohio. They come in sizes of 33, 55, and 88 tons, though models of 22 and 120 tons will be added in the first quarter of 2001. The Edge 33-tonner is priced at $33,500 as compared with $45,000 for a 33-ton Vista V hydraulic press hydraulic press

Machine consisting of a cylinder fitted with a piston (see piston and cylinder) that uses liquid under pressure to exert a compressive force upon a stationary anvil or baseplate. The liquid is forced into the cylinder by a pump.
. "No-haggle" prices of other Edge models are $38,000 for the 55-ton and $54,000 for the 88-ton.

These U.S.-built machines achieve lower cost through manufacturing efficiencies and optimization of components for cost-performance--approaches that Milacron intends to apply to all its machines. For example, the machines have sheet-metal instead of welded bases, simplified controls (no graphics or SPC 1. (business) SPC - Statistical Process Control. Something to do with quality management.

2. (body) SPC - Software Productivity Centre.
3. (company) SPC - Software Publishing Corporation.
 functions), and a very limited range of options. Thus, the Edge series is not intended to replace the more customizeable Vista V series of 33 to 120 tons. In the fourth quarter of this year, the machines will be available for shipment within one week. They will also have a 30-day money-back guarantee. Milacron demonstrated powder-metal molding on an Edge machine at NPE.

Two Platens Score Big

The space-saving benefits of two-platen presses were seen in a wide range of machine sizes from a host of vendors. Here are two entries not previously reported:

The Hydra Quad series of two-platen presses, made in Korea with a fully hydraulic (not hydromechanical) clamping system are offered here through a new U.S. agent, Vistar Machinery International, Inc., Canyon Lake Canyon Lake is the name of several inhabited places in the United States:
  • Canyon Lake, California
  • Canyon Lake, Texas
Canyon Lake is the name of several bodies of water in the United States:
  • Canyon Lake (Arizona)
  • Canyon Lake (South Dakota)
, Calif. These presses from 33 to 275 tons contain the hydraulic oil inside the tiebar casings on the injection side of the fixed platen, creating an oil-free mold area that is suited to clean-room molding.

Vistar also offers two-platen hydromechanical presses from 400 to 3000 tons that have a central "pancake" clamping cylinder; toggle presses from 35 to 935 tons; hybrid machines with electric screw drive; plus robots, chillers, granulators, and dryers.

New to the U.S. market is the 33-ton KM 30 C Winner, the smallest two-platen unit in the C series from Krauss-Maffei.

New Toggle Lines

In addition to two new lines of hydraulic-clamp machines, Van Dorn Demag Corp., Strongsville, Ohio, rolled out its new Integra line of mid-size toggle presses. (In pre-show publicity, this had been called the Pinnacle series.) The 140- and 280-ton models will be available in the fourth quarter, while the full range of eight sizes of 140 to 625 tons (including an all-electric version) will come on the market next year. They are based on Mannesmann Plastics Machinery's global toggle-press platform but are designed to U.S. specifications with commonly available U.S. components. They come with Pathfinder 3000 and 5000 controls, and standard features include robot interface, core pull, and configurable I/O (Input/Output) The transfer of data between the CPU and a peripheral device. Every transfer is an output from one device and an input to another. See PC input/output.

I/O - Input/Output
. Integra machines offer flexible configuration so that multi-component or high-speed versions and capabilities such as gas assist and LIM can be engineered quickly and economically. These machines have a more robust five-point toggle, as compared with the four-point toggle on Van Dorn's general-purpose HT line.

The new KX line of toggle presses of 55 to 720 from Kawaguchi Inc., Buffalo Grove Buffalo Grove

A village of northeast Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. Population: 43,300.
, Ill., also comes in a high-speed version. They have more robust motors and pumps than the standard line and can also incorporate an accumulator system.

Toggle presses from Plastic Metal SpA (also known as NPM NPM National Poetry Month
NPM National Postal Museum
NPM New Public Management
NPM National Association of Pastoral Musicians (Silver Spring, Maryland)
NPM Network Processor Module
NPM National Project Manager
) in Italy are available through the firm's new U.S. office in Hicksville, N.Y NPM offers the Unyka series of general-purpose, five-point toggles (50 to 2200 tons), Unyka CL series with seven-point toggles and longer stroke for molding extremely deep-draw parts, and Dynamika high-speed models (165 to 352 tons). NPM's newest development is the Unyka-3P line for tandem molding of two parts in overlapping cycles. These machines (550 to 2200 tons) have a third platen with the two molds on either side, similar to a stack mold. The injector is mounted perpendicularly and alternately feeds two hot-runner systems located within the third platen. The molds utilize a special locking system so that one can open while the other remains closed. This system is said to raise productivity almost 90%. The 3P configuration was originally developed for Royal Technologies Group of Toronto, which has three models of 1210 to 2200 tons.

Sandretto USA, Freedom, Pa., announced at the show that smaller models of its new Series Nine toggle presses come with air-cooled hydraulics. Lack of need for water cooling Water cooling is a method of heat removal from components. As opposed to air cooling, water is used as the heat transmitter. Water cooling is commonly used for cooling internal combustion engines in automobiles and electrical generators.  on some models of 140 to 285 tons is attributed to the hydraulic system's energy efficiency. It uses twin variable-volume pumps.

For the past year, PlastiMatix LLC (Logical Link Control) See "LANs" under data link protocol.

LLC - Logical Link Control
, Farmington Hills Far·ming·ton Hills  

A city of southeast Michigan, an industrial suburb of Detroit. Population: 81,400.
, Mich., has offered the HMT HMT Her Majesty's Treasury (UK)
HMT Hazardous Materials Table (49 CFR 172.101)
HMT Health Management Technology (magazine)
HMT Higher Mother Tongue
HMT Hindustan Machine Tools Ltd.
 line of double-toggle presses built by Hermestek in Taiwan. (They have been sold in Canada by Hermestek Ltd., Toronto.) They come in 70 to 1200 tons and have SPI (1) (Stateful Packet Inspection) See stateful inspection.

(2) (Service Provider Interface) The programming interface for developing Windows drivers under WOSA.
 ejector ejector
n by common usage, a device used to remove debris and fluids by negative pressure. Another term is
aspirator. See also aspirator.
 pattern and robot interface, proportional hydraulics, quickchange mold clamps, and core pull as standard.

Demag Ergotech USA of Strongsville, Ohio (which recently separated its business from that of sister company Van Dorn Demag), now offers an expanded line of Modular Concept machines. They include toggles of 138 to 396 tons and fully hydraulic clamps of 28 to 121 tons. Modular machines now offer two tiebar-space options for each clamp size. There are also three injection-unit options (with three screw diameters apiece) and a choice of standard or high-speed pumps. Each injection unit has a quick-change screw and barrel.

New Vertical Entries

A thorough redesign of its vertical machines was unveiled by Autojectors Inc., Avilla, Ind. Its new Evolution Series offers 20 to 40% larger mold area than previous models, faster clamp dry cycles (by 2 sec or more), lower table heights, and choice of rotary or shuttle tables. Also new is an open design that uses a safety light curtain A light curtain is a device which uses an array of photoelectric sensors to detect the presence of an object. Light curtains are commonly used with industrial equipment to 1) ensure machine safety at a point of operation control, area access control, or perimeter access, or 2)  instead of hard guarding. Evolution machines also carry the new VerteX PC controls, based on Milacron's new Xtreem Windows NT (Windows New Technology) A 32-bit operating system from Microsoft for Intel x86 CPUs. NT is the core technology in Windows 2000 and Windows XP (see Windows). Available in separate client and server versions, it includes built-in networking and preemptive multitasking.  platform (see sidebar). New control features not found on most vertical machines include floppy-disk drive for saving mold set-ups, flash-memory cards for quick program revisions in the field, user-defined "Quick Set" color screen pages, and four-way split-screen capability that holds the user's choice of "must-see" data. Available now are 30- and 80-ton models. A 50-tonner will follow this year and models of 120, 220, and 280 tons next year.

Custom-built vertical injection machines of 50 to 6000 tons are being introduced to the North American North American

named after North America.

North American blastomycosis
see North American blastomycosis.

North American cattle tick
see boophilusannulatus.
 market by Sandretto USA, Freedom, Pa. Sandretto developed these machines in cooperation with Cannon Tecnos of Italy, a sister company within the Cannon Group that supplies compression molding Compression molding is a method of molding in which the molding material, generally preheated, is first placed in an open, heated mold cavity. The mold is closed with a top force or plug member, pressure is applied to force the material into contact with all mold areas, and heat  presses. Cannon Tecnos is experienced in automated pre-press handling of fabrics and decorative laminates, as well as parts removal. Clamps can be either up- or down-stroking in single-station, shuttle, or carousel designs. New SEF SEF Search Engine Friendly
SEF Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras (Portugal; Portuguese Immigration and Border Control Office)
SEF Symantec Enterprise Firewall
SEF Straits Exchange Foundation (China) 
 2000 controls are included. Under license from Sumitomo Chemical of Japan, Sandretto offers the low-pressure SP Molding process for fabric lamination lamination

a laminar structure or arrangement.
, insert, or large-part molding.

Reed-Prentice Ltd., West Springfield West Springfield, town (1990 pop. 27,537), Hampden co., SW Mass., on the Connecticut River opposite Springfield; settled 1654, set off from Springfield and inc. 1774. Light manufactures include paper, chemicals, and ignition systems. , Mass., supplemented its 75- to 100-ton Duplimatic vertical series with new 14- and 33- ton Manumold and Duplimatic machines. Buyers can choose either hydraulic bridge clamp or shuttle configurations.

Toyo of Japan (represented by Maruka U.S.A. Inc., Rockaway, N.J.) has developed a vertical injection unit called the ITHR2

Boy Machines Inc., Exton, Pa., showed three new systems for automating insert molding. One is a three-axis parts remover integrated with its vertical presses. Second is the servo-driven Rotoslide rotary-table system developed by Panzer Tool Works, Inc., Elk Grove Village, Ill. The table not only indexes but also slides into and out of the mold area and also moves up and down. The latter motion allows the table to feed inserts to the mold without the need for multiple mold bottoms.

Third, Boy also offers Panzer's new linear Shuttleslide system, which can feed three mold bottoms to either two- or four-tiebar presses.

Faster Preform Molders

Plastimatix showed its own modification of a Gluco vertical press for thermoplastic A polymer material that turns to liquid when heated and becomes solid when cooled. There are more than 40 types of thermoplastics, including acrylic, polypropylene, polycarbonate and polyethylene.  molding. The 100-ton model shown had a C-frame, two-tiebar clamp; servo-driven turntable A playback machine for vinyl phonograph records, which were a major music distribution medium throughout the 20th century. The turntable contains a rotating platter to hold and spin the disc and an arm that holds a cartridge and needle (stylus).  that can travel up an down 6 in.; new servo-driven ejectors, and 5 in. of nozzle-height adjustment. The up-acting clamp keeps oil out of the molding area for clean-room use.

Krauss-Maffei introduced to the U.S. its KM PET-form machine for PET pre-forms. Two models, KM 175(192 tons) and KM 300 (330 tons), are based on the firm's C Series, though they use a vertical hydraulic, four-tiebar clamp. K-M K-M Krauss-Maffei (German locomotive manufacturer)  says the vertical design provides gravity-assisted preform removal and longer mold life because guide elements are always aligned and cores are centered for uniform wall-thickness distribution. A robot handles preform removal.

The KM 175 machine is offered with injection capacities of 1900 or 3500 cc and makes preforms for standard, widemouth, and specialty applications. It can run a 12-cavity mold with 66-mm centers. At the show it produced widemouth preforms in 12 cavities at 2700/hr. The KM 300 comes with up to 4500-cc injection capacity and can mold up to 48 cavities.

Husky has upped the productivity of its Index rotary-platen machine. Utilizing the same "micro-pitch" technology that permits squeezing 60 cavities into the 400-ton Index system, Husky can now raise the capacity of its 250-ton Index model from 48 to 60 cavities for 0.5-liter preforms. No increase in machine footprint is required. What's more, the dry-cycle time has been cut to less than 3 sec, so the 60-cavity unit can run 32,200 preforms/hr on a 6.7-sec cycle.

Microcellular Molding Expands

At NPE, it was announced that two more injection machine suppliers have taken licenses to build and retrofit machines for the MuCell microcellular foam molding process of Trexel, Inc., Woburn, Mass. Van Dorn Demag and Krauss-Maffei raise the number to nine machine vendors that can equip presses with the proper equipment to meter pressurized pres·sur·ize  
tr.v. pres·sur·ized, pres·sur·iz·ing, pres·sur·iz·es
1. To maintain normal air pressure in (an enclosure, as an aircraft or submarine).

 nitrogen or CO2 gas into the barrel. Van Dorn offers this option on machines to ship after Nov. 1. Krauss-Maffei plans to have its first MuCell-equipped machine operating at its development center in Allach, Germany, by December.

Meanwhile, the largest MuCell-ready machine yet built, a 1000-ton two-platen Duo model, was exhibited by Engel at NPE. However, Husky is building a 2200-ton MuCell-capable press for automotive molder MIG Plastics, Inc. of Morenci, Mich.

Coinjection & LIM

These two subjects might not seem to belong together, but they did at NPE. Engel has applied for a patent on new coinjection technology that allows molding sandwich structures of liquid silicone and other thermoset A polymer-based liquid or powder that becomes solid when heated, placed under pressure, treated with a chemical or via radiation. The curing process creates a chemical bond that, unlike a thermoplastic, prevents the material from being remelted. See thermoplastic.  rubbers.

In addition, Milacron announced at the show (and finished building last month) what is said to be the world's largest coinjection press. The 6600-ton, two-platen Maxima press has injection units of 368 and 413 oz that feed a single nozzle. It was assembled at the plant of a Midwestern molder.

A portable auxiliary injection-unit package that mounts on the fixed platen to convert a standard press to multi-component molding was shown by MGS MGS Mars Global Surveyor
MGS Metal Gear Solid
MGS Microsoft Game Studios
MGS Ministry of Government Services (Ontario, Canada)
MGS Maryland Geological Survey
MGS Malaysian Government Securities
MGS Minnesota Geological Survey
 Mfg. Group, Germantown, Wis. (see photo, p. 30). MGS has also begun to produce rotary platens for multi-shot molding in presses of 30 to 400 tons. The platen has a rack-and-pinion drive and built-in cooling circuits.

PC Controls Go On-Line

Get e-mail and the Internet right at the injection press? These are not futuristic possibilities, but are now standard features of the latest Windows NT version of Ferromatik Milacron's Xtreem controller. This is a 100% PC-based, "open-system" controller, also available in a basic ST model. Both models have a floppy-disk drive and Ethernet port A socket on a computer or network device for plugging in an Ethernet cable. See WAN port. , which allows all machines to be tied into the office PC network. Managers can "dial up" any machine to view real-time process and production screens.

In addition, the NT version comes with Internet Explorer Microsoft's Web browser, which comes with Windows starting with Windows 98. Commonly called "IE," versions for Mac and Unix are also available. Internet Explorer is the most widely used Web browser on the market. It has also been the browser engine in AOL's Internet access software.  software, a small video camera, and a microphone as standard. This permits video conferencing See videoconferencing.

(communications) video conferencing - A discussion between two or more groups of people who are in different places but can see and hear each other using electronic communications.
 at the press to solve machine or process problems. Also new is a "One-Touch" Internet connection with Milacron's process support center, where molders can get face-to-face technical support, remote diagnostics Vehicle Diagnostics
Vehicle diagnostics enables a mechanic to diagnose the exact mechanical condition of the vehicle and its systems and components. Remote Diagnostics enables to perform such diagnosis without requiring the vehicle to physically be present for checkup.
, or spare-parts service. Also new are abilities to record audio memos and streaming videos or still photos, which can be attached to voice or text memos for troubleshooting or set-up assistance.

Both Xtreem ST and NT controls have new displays of screw volume percent displacement, melt pressure, and plots of hydraulic and cavity pressure with shot volume and screw position. Milacron's Machine Validation Tool package, used to test machines at the factory, is built into the NT version. It can monitor and plot up 10,000 variables.

In addition, the Moldflow Plastics Xpert (MPX MPX - Multiplexor Channel ) software from Moldflow Corp., Lexington, Mass., can be incorporated as an option in the Xtreem NT control. MPX helps operators quickly optimize set-up and then monitor and correct the process during operation.

Incidentally, Moldflow is working to integrate MPX with the Interactive Process Manager (IPM (1) (Impressions Per Minute) Generally refers to document scanners that scan both sides of the page at the same time. Thus, a scanner that scans at 100 ppm (pages per minute) can provide 200 ipm. See ppm and document scanner. ) of Caco Pacific Corp., Covina, Calif. This will add information on mold pressures, temperatures, valve-gate position and core/slide position to the machine data monitored by MPX. The two firms will adopt a common hardware platform using Windows NT and a common data format for storing setpoints.

A brand-new PC-based machine control was unveiled at the show by Husky. It will be offered on all Husky's standard presses. A single Windows NT PC control for both the machine functions and operator interface replaces previous proprietary PLCs. Results are said to include faster cycles, 10-fold better cycle repeatability, improved synchronization of robot and machine, plus 10- or 20-fold better position resolution.

The PC touchscreen can control the machine, hot-runner system, robot, conveyors, and other auxiliaries. It can graph up to eight real-time process variables simultaneously. When you set speed and pressure profiles, you can determine the number of points you want in the profile. In the next enhancement, the control will use SPC methods to set control limits for each process variable based on past history, rather than leaving it up to the operator's subjective judgment.

The system comes with floppy-disk and CD-ROM drives CD-ROM drives, which today typically means a CD-RW drive that is a combo CD-ROM, CD-R and CD-RW drive, come in a variety of speeds. The original drive (1x) transferred data at 150KB per second.  and an Ethernet networking card. An EEPROM (Electrically Erasable Programmable ROM) A rewritable memory chip that holds its content without power. Although EEPROMs spawned flash memory, EEPROMs are byte addressable at the write level, whereas flash chips must erase a block of bytes before rewriting.  data key identifies each operator and pulls up that user's customized screen configuration. A "chat" function allows operators and supervisors to send messages back and forth in real time.

An optional enhanced troubleshooting package permits remote monitoring (protocol) remote monitoring - (RMON) A network management protocol that allows network information to be gathered at a single computer. Whereas SNMP gathers network data from a single type of Management Information Base (MIB), RMON 1 defines nine additional MIBs that provide a  and diagnostics by Husky technicians via modem. It can e-mail supervisors automatically when a machine goes down. This option also allows maintenance personnel to pull up electrical and hydraulic diagrams, and even audio and video files, on the machine display.

Ube showed a new touchscreen PC control on its U.S.-made hydraulic press. Its color-graphic displays include screens designed to be read at a distance and to make alarm conditions obvious. SFC SFC
sergeant first class
 is standard, and you can change the selection of parameters being charted on the fly. The controller has a floppy-disk drive and 6-GB hard drive that can store mold set-ups and AutoCAD drawings of the press hydraulics and electrics for maintenance use. A small printer can be located at the press to print out set-up sheets.

Engel has new "ultra-sensitive" Autoprotect mold-protection software in its CC100 controller that does not compromise clamp speed or cycle time. During set-up, Autoprotect records a "master curve" of clamp speed or pressure during closing. If the software detects the slightest deviation outside a preset tolerance from this curve on any molding cycle, it halts the clamp.
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
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Title Annotation:industry product information
Author:Knights, Mikell
Publication:Plastics Technology
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 1, 2000
Previous Article:New Dryer Technologies at NPE Aren't Just Hot Air.
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