Objectives and content
Plastic injection moulding machines (IMM's) are required
for mass production of plastic parts. About 50.000
machines are being produced annually world-wide
representing an estimated market volume of at least 3400
MECU per year. Hydraulically operated European IMM's
have been technological leader with high productivity
since many years, thus justifying their higher sales
price compared to competition mainly in the Far East.
During the last few years mainly Japanese and American
manufacturers have introduced electro-mechanically
operated IMM's. The main arguments are: average energy
consumption about 50 % less, better environmental
acceptance (no mineral oil, less cooling energy).
However, five of the six axes of an IMM perform linear
movements. Hydraulic drives relate much better than
electro-mechanics to this type of machine. But European
hydraulic machines need a considerable reduction in
energy consumption and improved environmental acceptance
without increase of machine cost. This can be achieved
by using an innovative electric-hydrostatic drive system
(EHS). This drive system controls the movements of the
IMM via the speed of the hydraulic pump directly.
Present day hydraulic systems have considerable energy
losses during partial load, idling and due to pilot flow
requirements. There are no developments available to
achieve similar improvements compared to the EHS.
Furthermore, precise prediction of total machine cycle
time and power consumption, for a plastic component, is
gaining considerable importance in competition. Software
packages available today either simulate the injection
process to analyse and optimise special process /
material parameters or the performance of the hydraulicmechanic machine movements. These software tools need to
be combined and adapted to predict total machine
performance for the production of plastic components.
Main objectives of the project are:
develop, design and test an innovative electrichydrostatic actuation system for IMM's that provides
overall productivity improvements of about 30% due to
reduced energy consumption and shorter dry cycle time
compared with current hydraulic machines;
improve capability to predict total cycle time and
energy consumption of IMM's for new plastic components,
thus enabling better prediction and reduction of plastic
contribute to keep technical leadership in Europe to
improve the competitiveness in this market segment worldwide and to secure the European export business.
The deliverables of this project will make it possible to
design an injection moulding machine with high
productivity and excellent energy efficiency, by using an
EHS, as well as to predict energy consumption and total
machine cycle time (including material process dependent
time) for plastic parts.
The proposal covers the Brite/Euram III research areas
1.1.1.S, 1.1.2.S, 1.1.1.M, 1.1.7.M and will impact
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
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