Production in a Continuous Flow
Working together, Balda AG and Singulus Technologies AG have developed a new production line for finishing plastic parts. Removal of the plastic parts from the injection moulding machine and transfer to the system for application of a metallic surface finish and a scratch-resistant coating take place fully automatically. The parts are processed in a continuous flow until they are finished.
Previously, decorated plastic parts were manufactured by means of batch processing. Here, parts are processed in spatially separated areas. The inline process combines all of the separate manufacturing steps together in a centralised production sequence, so that the parts move directly from one processing station to the next. In this case, the operations of injection moulding, painting and PVD coating are coupled to one another.
An enclosed transfer system interconnects the individual production modules. Parts are transported from one processing station to the next in a cleanroom atmosphere. Depending on the task, different modules can be combined. In contrast to batch processing, parts need not be buffered, cleaned or inspected. All parts are transferred directly from one station to the next and processed until a finished product results.
The cost effectiveness of production increases continually, since quality control inspections are eliminated between the steps and part transport is reduced to a minimum. In addition, cleaning of parts is not necessary, as all processing operations occur under controlled cleanroom conditions.