Q. There seems to be heavy investment in Injection molding across the world. What is causing this high demand?
The consumption of plastic has grown atleast twenty times since the nineties. If you need plastic products or components you have to manufacture them and the process is Injection molding and Blow molding. It is a simplev equation and this is the reason for the rise in Injection molding machines and installed capacity. The rubber industry also uses the Injection molding machinery but the usage and production does not equate to plastic. Because of its simplicity and diverse use, Injection molding has become the most popular process in plastic.
In comparison to the rest of the world, the consumption of plastic in India is still low yet, it is a high potential market. The per capita usage of plastic is ever increasing and even across industry, plastic is in demand. Most sectors require plastic components but
the automobile, packaging, consumer goods, appliances and electronics industries are amongst the biggest drivers behind this growth.
Q. What are the issues that crop up in the Injection molding segment?
Currently, Indian manufacturers are exporting plastic products to more than 50 countries. Yet, if they use the mechanical hydraulic process it uses a lot of energy and turns out to be expensive. There are also factors of control regarding flow and pressure which require consistency especially if one needs to scale up.
Q. How has Automation improved the Injection molding process?
Well, first and foremost it improved the efficiency of the whole process. The control system in an Injection molding process is the conventional hydraulic pump driven by a normal motor. This has been replaced with a Servo hydraulic pump governed with a Servo motor and Drive. At Delta we have the Hybrid Energy Saving or the HES System which is a combination of hydraulic and electric. HES features high power density, excellent pressure and flow control, long service life design and ease of maintenance. The system uses CANopen communication. A hydraulic system with an AC Servo motor with a Servo pump provides a high response rate. There is also a higher duplication accuracy and constant torque to the system. With precise control of pressure and flow the HES eliminates the energy waste and improves the control system for Injection molding machinery which in turn enhances market competitiveness.
Q. What more does Delta bring to the table?
We are the only company in India who can actually take ownership of electronics, electrical and hydraulic together because we have a dedicated inhouse team and an inhouse testing facility. A testing facility for hydraulics in manufacturing companies is still rare. The testing helps us enhance performance and check the reliability of our products.
Q. What new innovations is this sector likely to see?
There are exciting times ahead for Injection molding. Delta started with the hydraulic control system for Injection molding and now we are venturing into a dedicated controller system. We will be bringing IoT to the system in a complete package with Industry 4.0. This will not include the plastic processing but an entire system to monitor the plastic process including the heat control system and Direct Drive torque motors which are a crucial part of the refilling process, Door Control Drives via communication and more. This integrated solution simplifies the system structure. Production Data can then be monitored and managed on our Delta Manufacturing xecution System or the MES for the Injection molding machine. It will connect the master controller, Servo and motor Drive through CANopen communication for real time communication. We will also support standard Ethernet communication to connect peripheral equipment to achieve equipment IoT. The future of Injection molding is the complete basket of automation, communication and energy saving.
The article was published in Engineering Review