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2/3/2015 | 2 MINUTE READ

MACHINE CONTROL: Controller Upgrades for Injection, Thermoforming and Blow Molding Machines

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Programmable logic controllers feature built-in diagnostics.

Eurotherm, Ashburn, Va., will highlight the entire family of MACO Compact discrete controllers for injection molding, blow molding, extrusion, and thermoforming machines.


Eurotherm by Schneider-Electric says the MACO Compact family is a platform of tightly integrated, application specific, programmable logic controllers that feature built-in diagnostics, process monitoring, advance processing, and precision temperature control. These attributes promote better control during the extrusion, injection and blow molding process, thus improving part quality, saving energy and reducing waste.


The expandable MACO Compact control system for injection molding machines features Eurotherm IMPACTTM II closed loop process control. For improved optimization in closed loop systems, IMPACT II creates a theoretical model of the injection molding process after only a few cycles and uses that model along with hundreds of rules to compensate for any deviations.


Operator interfaces are available in a range of cost-effective HMI’s, with features that include, high speed display updates, Ethernet communication, recipe storage ability, online and web RLD diagnostics, statistical process control, and large color touch screens available in several sizes.


The closed loop control updates at less than 0.1 millisecond, according to Eurotherm, which will display the HT MACO Compact control platform package on the widely installed Van Dorn HT Machine line. Eurotherm says its MACO product is a good replacement on machines where the original control systems are no longer supported in the field by the OEM.


Blow Molding
For blow molding machines, Eurotherm offers the Breeze IIc and the MACO Compact control, which offer operator interfaces utilizing Microsoft CE.net. Eurotherm positions the Breeze IIc system as a replacement for existing parison controllers. A compact parison board and touch screen display are all housed in an optimally sized single chassis, eliminating the size and costs associated with separate controller enclosures.


The Breeze IIc is factory programmed based on user specifications for any machine make or model, with an electronic 100 point parison profile and 100 point velocity push out control. The parison tooling position is updated every 0.1 msec to minimize material usage and improve part quality.


In addition to closed loop parison process control, the system provides control of the clamp, linear positioning of machine or auxiliary functions, pressure/flow, auto-tuned heat/cool temperature, and sequential machine, as well as built-in timing and counting. All control functions are integrated into a single 4-, 6-, or 8-slot chassis with expansion into multi-chassis configurations if needed. The open design also allows molders to integrate the control of virtually any machine and process variable. Other optional features include statistical process control (SPC), math functions, and several communications options.


Eurotherm’s EM-3c is specifically designed for small extruders and its standard package can be used solely for temperature and pressure control or expanded to take on complete line control. Pre-engineered packaging with preconfigured screens and standard control system definitions reduce installation time and expense, according to Eurotherm. 


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