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Norbert Sparrow

September 20, 2016

2 Min Read
Contract medical molder doesn’t settle for the same old (re)grind

For polymermedics (St. Austell, UK), a contract injection molder for the medical device and pharmaceutical industries, reliable, clean processes that produce defect-free precision parts is of paramount concern. The company recently collaborated with Piovan (Venice, Italy) to engineer a modified version of its Quantum Q7 gravimetric blender that would contribute to achieving those outcomes.

Process Engineer Sharon Mitchell was tasked at polymermedics with evaluating the Q7 and suggesting relevant changes to adapt the technology to shop floor needs. Because all of the surfaces that come in contact with process materials are made of stainless steel, Piovan’s Quantum series blenders are suited for critical applications in the medical and food & beverage sectors. They also feature easy removal of the dosing stations for cleaning and maintenance and a modular design. But Mitchell was looking for something more.

Polymermedics Process Engineer Sharon Mitchell.

“I looked at the system from an operator’s point of view,” said Mitchell. From that perspective, she noted that the blending process could be simplified by feeding regrind directly back into the throat of the blender and ensuring a perfect blend of material is fed into the barrel. The modification not only improved reliability, efficiency and color consistency, but it also reduced dust generation in the company’s clean molding environment.
 
In most cases, that’s where the story would end. But polymermedics and Piovan have a deep business relationship, and Technical Manager Neil Skyba passed along Mitchell’s observations. “Sharon’s observations were spot on,” said Skyba, “so I had no hesitation in sending them straight over to Venice.”

They ultimately travelled to Venice—not entirely a hardship—to discuss the modifications in person, and the customized Q7 is now hard at work in polymermedics’ molding hall, said the company.

“Thanks to Sharon and Piovan, the Quantum Q7 now perfectly meets the needs of our industry, and helps us to produce our products in a cleaner, more accurate and more efficient way,” said Skyba.

About the Author(s)

Norbert Sparrow

Editor in chief of PlasticsToday since 2015, Norbert Sparrow has more than 30 years of editorial experience in business-to-business media. He studied journalism at the Centre Universitaire d'Etudes du Journalisme in Strasbourg, France, where he earned a master's degree.

www.linkedin.com/in/norbertsparrow

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