Plastics News - Show Daily - October 24, 2022 - 9

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Plastics News, October 24, 2022 * 9
Maplan automates, innovates to save time, labor, energy
By Andrew Schunk
Rubber News
With the economic challenges
that are replete across the globe
and especially in Europe, saving
energy is the order of the day. And
machines molding rubber and silicones
need a lot of energy to run.
This is a trend that is not going
to reverse itself, according to
rubber production machine manufacturer
Maplan GmbH, based in
Kottingbrunn, Austria.
" Since prices for energy have
risen to lofty heights due to the
[Russian war in Ukraine] and additional
climate protection measures
have to be fi nanced, the expenses
for this have reached the
top of the cost calculations, " said
CEO Wolfgang Meyer at an Oct. 19
news conference at K 2022.
" For
mechanical
engineering,
this means the progressive use of
energy-saving
technical components, "
he said.
Maplan's hands-on example of
this is the Rapid horizontal machine
series and especially the periphery
around the new injection
molder being introduced by Maplan.
The highlight of the machine
is the high-precision clamping unit,
which reduces energy consumption
and enables faster cycle times.
This comprises both the central
ejector and the bar ejectors on
both machine platens, Meyer said.
The servo-electric drive allows
parallel operation without the
need for parallel hydraulics.
" This is a
face-lift for the
auto industry, "
Meyer told
Rubber News.
" Indeed, rubber
machines
need a lot of
electricity to
run. Maplan
introduced the
servo drive for
the industry,
and we are at
the forefront with this. "
Meyer
Enabling productivity
Meyer analogized the engineering
around the massive Rapid 300
injection molder to achieving energy
savings at home, whereby
a homeowner might turn many
small things off to witness reasonable
gains.
With the machine's optimized
hydraulics, linear guidings to reduce
friction and an isobar system
for heat distribution, these
components - like the many appliances
and outlets in a home -
in aggregate can help save energy.
" Our servo-hydraulic drive is
the most effi cient drive on the
market, " Meyer said. " It only runs
when you need it. No one seems to
be talking about the cooling that is
required. Where does all this heat
go? Ineffi ciency creates heat.
" If you do not create energy in
the beginning, you don't have to
cool it away. "
Often motors are always running,
whether a company needs
them to or not. " Instead of having
a 750W cooling unit running 24/7,
a company might only use half of
this energy or less, " Meyer said.
This, too, plays into the notion
of peripheral components helping
to save money and energy, as the
Demand Control Intelligence system
developed in-house by Maplan
offers a precise temperature
control unit for the Rapid 300.
According to Maplan, the new
injection molding machine can realize
savings of about $12,900 per
year over another, comparable
injection molder that is 10 years
old and up to $22,360 per year for
an injection molder that is 20-30
years old.
" This is terrible energy consumption
without the servo
drive, " Meyer said.
And with energy savings comes
improved environmental and fi -
nancial stewardship, said Philippe
Soulier, managing partner of Maplan
owner Soulier Holdings.
" With a machine that
costs
$200,000, it can pay for itself [over
a 20- to 30-year-old machine] in 10
years, " Soulier said. " It helps with
overhead costs as well as reduced
CO2 production. "
Other improved features of
Maplan's new injection molder
include speed of production increasing
by 20 percent and closing
speed increasing by 75 percent;
and with production of O-rings, for
example, between two and three
seconds can be saved per cycle.
" That does not sound like
much, but it is enormous over the
period of a year, " Meyer said. " Energy
is never going to be as cheap
as it was in the past. New machines
can reduce the entire energy
network that you have. Throw
out the old crap. ... It really makes
sense to do so nowadays.
" There are a lot of things that, in
combination, serve to make an effi
cient machine. When energy was
cheap, many people did not care. "
Saving labor, downtime
As Maplan enters its fi fth decade,
it has evolved with the times,
in this case automating to save in
labor, downtime and energy costs.
" In addition to energy costs ...
the lack of labor in many places
is the second major challenge for
production and machine manufacturing
companies, " Meyer said.
" The topic is no longer to automate
where there [are] expensive
labor costs. In Mexico, China and
Turkey, where there is cheap labor,
the factories are empty.
" Automation is constant,
cost-effi cient and 24/7. There is
no one there to make a mistake. "
Enter Map.autocell, a machine
cell that Maplan has been working
on since the last K show, which can
be tailored to machining tasks from
a modular system that " largely corresponds
to machine control. "
" We sell a standard machine for
Soulier
rubber
manufacturing, "
said. " Then we
develop the
energy-saving
items. We
don't sell elements
of our
MAPLAN
GMBH
Hall 16,
Booth F42
machines. The 360-degree solution
is Maplan's autocell. "
Meyer noted that Maplan, by
staying ahead of the game, often
is aware of information " that the
customer has no idea about, like
turnkey systems. "
" Robots take over the parts
transfer from the machine or within
the cell, " Meyer said. " By arranging
several cells in a row, processing
sequences from demolding to
deburring, quality inspection and
labeling to packaging can be combined
and cycled through. "
Even complex tasks can easily
be programmed with the autocell
system, Meyer said.
" The programming of the robot
movements is just as easy as that
of the machine movements, " Meyer
said. " This also allows less qualifi
ed employees to quickly familiarize
themselves with the system. "
Maplan injection molders are
used in the automotive, alternate
energy, railway, sanitary system,
medical technology, construction
and garden, aerospace and electrical
industries, among many others.
The injection molding machines
and presses can produce rubber
metal parts, cable bushings, bearings,
shaft seals, head gaskets, fl at
gaskets and diaphragms, among
many other components.
EcozoteĀ®
LDR
with 30%
recycled
content
zotefoams.com
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Plastics News - Show Daily - October 24, 2022

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