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Mold-controls Maker To Offer Conformal Cooling

February 28, 2003

1 Min Read
Mold-controls Maker To Offer Conformal Cooling

Mold temperature controls specialist GWK Gesellschaft Wärme Kältetechnik mbH, Kierspe, Germany, has taken over production of components for the Contura conformal mold-cooling system developed by Innova Engineering GmbH, Menden, Germany. GWK has taken a manufacturing license and formed a new company, GWK Tools GmbH, to make mold inserts with manufacturing and employees from the now-defunct Innova Tooling GmbH. Innova Engineering will operate independently on development projects for conformal-cooling systems. Licenses that Innova has sold to third parties, as well as the firm’s alliance with engineering resins supplier Bayer AG, Leverkusen, Germany, are unaffected.

In the Contura system, cooling channels follow the contours of the mold cavity and core in order to provide more uniform cooling. The mold insert is cut into slices, channels are gouged into the exposed surfaces, and the slices are vacuum welded back together. In tool geometries where channels cannot fit, high-thermal-conductivity metals are used. GWK Tools will supply oversized inserts for final machining and assembly into the complete mold.

Now, GWK sales manager Helmut Gries says the company can offer complete mold temperature-control packages. “A problem in the past has been the interface between the temperature controller and the mold. Now we take full responsibility.”

Innova recently implemented a new pricing scheme for Contura. Although it has been installed in over 11,000 molds in the last nine years, and in spite of its reportedly fast payback through reduced cycle times and improved part quality, many potential users have shied away because of its high cost. Pricing was previously linked to the cost savings achieved in production. Although Gries does not provide details, he says prices are now significantly lower, and that several previously stalled projects are moving again.

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