INJECTION MOLDING: New Control Features Shown at K 2016

iQ weight control for hydraulic machines and new energy module for central plant monitoring.

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At the K 2016 show in Dusseldorf last month, Engel Austria (U.S. office in York, Pa.) presented two new monitoring and control features. One is a new version of its iQ weight control software, originally developed for machines with servo-electric injection units, and now available for hydraulic injection units. The electric version of iQ weight control is now installed on over 1000 machines. The software is designed to maintain shot volume from shot to shot by monitoring the pressure profile in real time and comparing it to a reference cycle. The speed profile, switchover point, and pack/hold pressure are adjusted within every shot.

Second, Engel unveiled a new software module for its central MES (manufacturing execution system) monitoring computer. The new energy module monitors and displays the energy consumption of individual machines and functions within each machine. It also can avoid peak power draws when multiple machines are started up after a weekend or a plant shutdown. The software dynamically allocates and prioritizes machine-specific consumption limits to avoid energy peaks by accessing data in the ecobalance energy-management system within in machine’s CC300 control system. What ecobalance does to manage energy consumption for different functions (heating, plasticating, injection, etc.) within a machine or cell, the new module does for the entire plant. Machines and cells can be grouped arbitrarily to allocate individual consumption limits to particular areas of the plant.