New electric injection-blow and extrusion blow machines are said to offer dramatically reduced energy consumption and higher productivity.
New electric injection-blow and extrusion blow machines are said to offer dramatically reduced energy consumption and higher productivity. The 57-ton I&B 52-3 injection-blow machine from Automa North America, Burlington, Ont., is a three-station hybrid unit with electric servomotors controlling most movements. Final clamping on the injection station is hydraulic. Energy consumption at 3500 pharmaceutical bottles/hr is one-third less than competitive injection-blow units, according to Automa. The machine, which includes a PC-based controller, can run up to 10 cavities and make bottles up to 350 cc. A four-station unit with an additional cooling and conditioning stage will be commercialized next year. The electric extrusion blow unit, called the Apex AT300DE (pictured), is a double-station shuttle machine targeted at cosmetic and pharmaceutical bottles up to 1 liter with two parisons (center distance 125 mm). Carriage shuttle and blowpin movements as well as parison thickness regulation are electrically driven. An hydraulic assist is used for final clamping (40 tons). A takeout system with expanding rings picks up bottles by the neck in the deflashing station and transports them to the merge conveyor. The machine has a PC-based controller and a 60-mm, 24:1 extruder. Energy consumption at 1150 bottles/hr is said to be about 33% less than competitive extrusion blow units.