ACS Group Positions Itself as a One-Stop Shop for Plastics Auxiliaries
The AEC, Sterling and Cumberland brands bring new products and a deep well of experience to NPE2018.
The ACS Group—consisting of AEC, with material handling, process cooling and other auxiliary equipment; Cumberland, with size reduction; and Sterling with temperature control and oil-circulating high-temperature systems—brings a broad cross section of equipment to NPE2018 supported by a wealth of industry experience, according to Mark Johansen, VP marketing and product development. He explains the company’s pitch to potential customers here in Orlando and the overarching theme of its booth thusly:
“From conveying, drying, and blending, to process cooling and heat transfer, and size reduction, our 100 plus years of expertise and leadership ensure your factory operates at peak profitability.”
AEC and Sterling are in a combined stand (Booths W2542 and W2642), with Cumberland (Booth S24189) in the Re | focus Zone. Both booths are chock full of new technology, according to Johansen. At AEC, the company says its new High Efficiency Central Chiller can deliver users up to 60% in average energy savings thanks to what it calls the most efficient fan technology in the industry. The chillers utilize Electrically Commutated (EC) fan motors, which AEC says have proven to be more efficient than variable frequency drives (VFD) and fan staging. Compared to the VFD-controlled compressors, AEC says the High Efficiency Central Chiller is more efficient and less complex, generating the biggest savings when running between 40 and 80% of capacity.
“EC motors were specified for their low cost of operation and long life,” Johansen says. He adds that the ‘smart’ electronics inherent in the EC motor and controller, allow the speed to vary and precisely match the performance desired by the application. The EC motor operation yields efficiencies as high as 85%, so that it consumes less electricity than a traditional motor. “Additionally, with high efficiencies, less heat is generated, reducing stress on motor windings and bearings, extending the life of the chiller,” Johansen says.
Maximum flexibility is the goal of a new discrete wired conveying controller, also at AEC, that allows the number of pumps and receiver stations to be customized to fit processors’ evolving needs. The VacTrac Plus can control vacuum receivers, vacuum pumps, remote proportioning valves, purge valves, knife gates, and pump or hopper blowback in any resin conveying application across any process. The control is fully configurable from one to 12 pumps and one to 44 stations.
The VacTrac Plus has a 7-in. high-resolution color touch screen, powered by an Allen Bradley PLC. The graphical user interface layout with a VNC server allows remote 2-way communication on any PC, tablet, or mobile device. The system offers Ethernet connectivity and can be networked to PCs anywhere.
Johansen says the VacTrac Plus material conveying system is operational in the AEC booth, allowing attendees to see a demonstration of “the performance and scalability of this industry-leading solution.” In terms of live displays, AEC is also demonstrating its new BD Blender, which features a proprietary mixing technology said to eliminate all dead zones and achieve a homogenous mixture in as little as 15 sec.
The company will also show attendees the capabilities of its new feature-enhanced T50 granulator controls, with customers able to navigate the new HMI. “Along with controls, we will also have our maintenance mode active so customers can see how easy it is to access our cutting chamber,” Johansen adds.
ACS Group equipment on display is also ready for the Industry 4.0 wave crashing across the plastics industry, according to Johansen. “Nearly all ACS equipment shown at the NPE2018 is Industry 4.0 enabled,” Johansen says. Ethernet connectivity for its products is quick and easy, he says, allowing for “seamless compatibility with most leading smart factory platforms.” In terms of remote monitoring, Johansen says ACS equipment facilitates connection via phone, tablet or PC. “There is immediate visibility to process errors, predictive and preventive maintenance diagnostics, and real-time diagnostics of system status through live graphing and data logging,” Johansen explains.