Arburg: Production efficiency is key to the future


Arburg, the mFakuma 2012achine manufacturer that helped put energy efficiency on the map, has now taken its initiative a step further with the introduction of an all-embracing theme of production efficiency. At the Fakuma show this year, this theme was the focus of all the exhibits on display at the company's booth.

"Efficient production means optimum quality at the lowest possible part cost," said Michael Hehl, Managing Partner and spokesperson for the Arburg Management Team. "But production efficiency can only be achieved if the entire value chain is involved. There is a potential for a higher rate of efficiency - to varying degrees - in every area by means of shorter cycle times, improved energy efficiency, and by optimizing production."

In this perspective, innovation is more than just new features on a machine, but includes sophisticated new machine technology, new processes and applications, more process integration and product design.

Continuous long-fiber injection molding technology
Among the highlights featured at Arburg's display at Fakuma were two innovative applications. The first is a new "long-fiber direct-injection molding" process, a joint development with German Plastics Center SKZ in Würzburg.

The process allows inline feeding of the glass fibers, enabling longer fibers to be processed, for the production of lightweight injection molded parts with thin walls and high strength.

Arburg
From the right: Michael Hehl, managing partner; Helmut Heinson, managing director sales; and Herbert Kraibühler, managing director Technology & Engineering.

The second application, called Particle-foam Composite Injection Molding (PCIM), is a joint project with Krallmann and Ruch Novaplast in which a foamed part is combined with plastic for the first time. The two components are bonded, so that there is no need for subsequent assembly steps and a finished part is produced in a single step, opening up new options for  applications in the areas of electric mobility, lightweight construction and insulation.

Arburg is also showing a production cell with inline printing system: another example of enhanced production efficiency through product design and process integration is the production cell with inline printing system and six-axis robot system. This Inkbot process from FPT Robotik combines digital printing and robotics and enables parts with irregular geometries and curves to be printed. This means that customized injection-molded parts can be produced fully automatically in a single step.

New machine
Arburg has added a new machine to its range of electric Alldrive machines. The

new Allrounder 630 A features a servo-electric toggle system and a clamping force of 2500 kN and uses up to 50% less energy compared to conventional standard hydraulic machines. The exhibition machine is equipped with a 32-cavity mould from Kebo, Switzerland. The molded part weight is around 1.9g and the cycle time is 10 seconds.

Arburg is now also offering the hydraulic Allrounder Golden Edition  with a productivity package to boost efficiency, which includes the Arburg energy-saving system claimed to reduce energy consumption by up to 20%. The variable speed pump drive allows the machine to be operated at higher speeds, leading to a higher pump output, shorter dry cycle times and minimal emissions.

Also, Arburg is presenting its servo-hydraulic drive concept for the large Allrounder S series machines with a clamping force range from 2500 to 5000 kN. This energy-saving drive alternative will be available at what the company calls an attractive price/performance ratio from Fakuma until the Technology Days, Arburg's annual event in Lossburg, in March 2013.

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