From Laminar to Lightweight Construction
From the individual part to mass production, Arburg GmbH + Co. KG, with its eleven exhibits, is devoting itself to the theme of production efficiency. Besides the holistic consideration of plastic moldings, the focus is also on their economic production. The range extends from the additive manufacturing of individual parts and small series, via Arburg Plastic Freeforming (AKF) to special injection molding processes and process combinations, such as three-component injection molding, long-fiber direct injection molding, particle-foam composite injection molding (PVSG) and the processing of liquid silicone.
A key focus is on the additive production of parts. With AKF, plastic parts can be manufactured individually or in small series using established injection molding machine technology, but without a mold, directly from CAD data. It uses inexpensive standard pellet stock, from which the parts are built up in layers drop by drop. The industrial process allows not only inspection samples and prototypes but also ready-to-use parts to be produced and novel geometries can also be realized. At the trade show booth, Arburg presents two Freeformers, both of which have a three-axis part carrier and two discharge units, in order to produce plastic parts from two materials. The focus here is on two-component parts as well as products with support structures, which can be removed downstream in the water bath or mechanically.
As a technical innovation, the machine manufacturer has included for the first time a complete microinjection unit of Euromap size 5 in its program. This exhibit centers on an electrical Allrounder 270 A with a clean-air hood; it is intended as a production unit for micro parts and produces four micro gear wheels weighing only 0.03 g. The micro injection unit combines a 15 mm screw for melting the material with an 8 mm screw for injection. It allows very small shot weights, maintaining tolerances in the micron range, even with standard molding stocks.
On a hydraulic Allrounder 820 S, a lightweight part is manufactured for the automotive industry by long-fiber direct injection molding. Since, by virtue of the process technology, the fiber length can be adjusted up to 50 mm and thanks to the low fiber damage in the plastic melt, the advantages of plastics as a lightweight construction material can be combined with high strength due to the long fiber lengths.
Another interesting lightweight construction method is particle-foam composite injection molding. With its partners Krallmann and Ruch Novaplast, Arburg has, for the first time, integrated the foam line necessary for manufacturing a foamed product precursor in the manufacturing cell – the intermediate product previously had to be separately conveyed to the injection molding machine. A six-axis robot places the particle-foam part in the injection mold, where a screw-thread is overmolded as an integral attachment. This composite part – consisting of a foamed component and an overmolded hard plastic component – can then be integrated into, e. g., a foamed housing as a standardized part in order to easily connect media lines with an airtight joint.
Fakuma Hall A3, booth 3101
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