Production processes are becoming progressively more challenging. Besides core processes, the handling, conveying, mixing, and dosing of raw materials need to be optimized and adapted to an increasingly complex manufacturing environment.
The optimized control of material distribution in existing and new factories can reduce failures and operating costs drastically. With smart concepts and perfectly dimensioned components, we provide individual solutions that address these issues and further stabilize the overall process.
Whether you need material handling for a plastification unit on your injection molding machine, an extruder on your cast or blown-film line, or any other plastic converting process, we can offer smart, high-quality solutions to optimize your material flow.
Taking a holistic approach, our first step is to analyze your existing production processes and material flow to identify your individual requirements together with you. Based on this information, and together with our deep process know-how in different applications in the plastics industry, we then develop a smart tailor-made concept up to the required level of automation. Our concept provides flexibility for enhancements should you encounter the need for future adaptations.
You can bring your production to a whole new level by automating your material handling system to your preferred degree – beginning from single dosing units with an exact scaling up to the complete control and visualization of the whole system, including the integration of the silos. Our smart concepts for small and large scale, high-quality machines, combined with our local technical support will undoubtedly ensure your processes are safe.
Stable production process
Continuous high-quality production
Energy & cost saving
Reduction of manpower for material distribution
Errorless material distribution
Reduced material loss
Reduced factory footprint
Clean & safe production environment
A South-East Asian converting company with currently more than 100 injection molding machines and manual material distribution faced the usual difficulties of this kind of process setup, such as faulty material distribution, high level of required manpower and floor space as well as high traffic on site to distribute the individual raw material to the machines.
To grow their business and to improve its profitability, they planned to expand their production by building a new facility with more than 200 injection molding machines. With up to 100 additional machines and the large amount of plastic materials to be handled, the complexity of the whole production plant would actually increase, adding further sources of errors. Therefore, they planned to include a central material distribution system to address the above difficulties.
In view of the wide variety of materials with various mixtures and around 300 different colors used, outdoor silos also needed to be installed. Furthermore, the company needed a system capable of handling virgin and regrind materials as well as master batch. To make things even more complex, approx. 20% of the material used needed to be dried.
Only a customized system that fulfills all these stringent requirements would guarantee a safe upgrade of the production plant.
The Rieckermann solution
To ensure error-free material distribution for the facility, Rieckermann designed a tailor-made machine-based solution with central gravimetric mixing units and volumetric dosing units on each machine. The central gravimetric mixing units ensure that most of the material mixing takes place at a central location and not as in the current process at the dosing unit on top of the machines itself. The volumetric dosing units require lower investment than gravimetric ones.
This solution is quite unique on the market, and can easily be extended if the company should want to install additional injection molding machines in the future. The integrated system also includes the surveillance and control of the outdoor silos.
The key result
A stable production process, with continuous high quality, as well as the reduction of material losses and manpower are the main factors to be considered when developing a central material handling system. By installing the planned solution, the company would gain an automated, faultless material distribution process with a clean and safe production environment, and a minimum of required floor space for raw material beside the machines.
Additionally, the solution helps the company to reduce energy and manpower costs, leading to greater profitability.
Looking to future growth and investment, another major benefit from this individually tailored system with its central gravimetric mixing units is the reduction of investment costs required for a planned expansion. As the central gravimetric mixing units are already capable of handling 30% higher throughput, the volumetric dosing units could simply be added to each injection molding machine without further gravimetric dosing units being required. This results in a lower investment compared to gravimetric dosing units on each machine.