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processing | Energy management Through the integration of an external energy

source, Motan-Colortronic says it has realised a unique drying and central material supply solution for German automotive supplier FKT. The company produces injection mouldings, which it combines with fabrics, nets, and aluminium profiles into complex assemblies at its plant near Ingolstadt. Over the past few years it has completely rebuilt its injection moulding operation. FKT operates a CHP cogeneration plant using wood

Above: Athena Automation’s machine control system includes an active power supply to

manage energy use, feeding back into the grid when feasible

energy consumption and is said to yield an up to 60% energy saving when compared to conventional systems. Between the dryers and hoppers, Moretto offers its Flowmatik system for automatically managing process air distribution in multi-hopper systems.

Recovering energy Moulding machine networking opens up new prospects for energy recovery during operation. Engel is investi- gating how to make recovered, stored braking energy available between machines to cover power peaks, and even feeding it back into the power grid if it cannot be reused locally in a cost-efficient way. “Where substan- tial amounts of power are involved, it would be worth- while investing in kinetic storage,” the company claims. Engel says it is currently transferring the energy

Right: Motan- Colortronic

installed these heat exchang-

ers to integrate FKT’s drying

system into the local district heating network

storage concept that it developed for its e-speed series of fast cycling electric hybrid machines to other series as well. This concept, currently used to support electrical clamp operation on units up to 650 tonnes, is based on the flywheel principle. The storage system absorbs the braking energy of the platen movements, which would otherwise be converted into heat and released into the environment, and transfers it back on demand, for example when the platen accelerates again. At Athena Automation, which was founded in 2008 by Robert Schad—a man with impressive “green” credentials—after he left Husky, Sales Support Manager Aron Szasz Gabor, says its injection moulding machines’ control system uses an active power supply. This allows power to be fed back into the grid, as well as for optimisation of use between the different axes within the system. Energy consumption is monitored and verified through built-in software, which provides the operator with full energy transparency of all machine components in real time on the machine’s HMI. Drawn power and energy consumed can be viewed for every individual axis on the machine.

34 INJECTION WORLD | September 2016

chip combustion that also supplies several companies and buildings in the area. FKT uses the low-cost district heating through a buffer tank for tool heating. The external heat supply has now been integrated into the Motan-Colortronic granule drying and central material supply system, which includes 13 Luxorbin A drying bins of various volumes and coupling station. A Luxor A 900 dryer feeds the drying bins with dry air, which is heated by the heat exchanger from the district heating supply. Conventional electrical heating is only used when temperatures above 80°C are required (such as when processing 50% glass reinforced PA grades and some other ETP grades). The system is controlled via Motan-Colortronic’s standard ETA plus software.

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