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Progress reported on rating energy consumption of injection presses

By: David Eldridge

October 23, 2012

FRIEDRICHSHAFEN, GERMANY (Oct. 23, 10:45 a.m. ET) — A European project to introduce labeling on injection molding machines that gives a rating for their energy consumption has completed the first stages. However it will be at least a year before the labeling system is launched by European machine makers.

The project was started in 2011 by Euromap, the European association representing plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers. It forms part of the plastics industry’s response to the European Commission’s Energy Related Products directive, which seeks to reduce the energy consumption of industrial machinery by 20 percent by 2020.

The project has worked on developing a standard approach to measurement of energy consumption in injection molding machines. This work has now finished, announced VDMA, the German machinery association, at a forum on its Blue Competence energy efficiency program which it held last week during the Fakuma 2012 exhibition in Friedrichshafen.

But before the labeling system is launched, machinery makers are being given time to improve the energy consumption of their product ranges so that they achieve an A rating at the launch.

“Everybody is being given the chance to get into the best classification,” said Karlheinz Bourdon, vice president of technologies at KraussMaffei, who is involved in the project.

Speaking to European Plastics News after the forum, he said there is no fixed timetable, but he hopes an announcement on the labeling system can be made by the time the K2013 exhibition takes place in October next year.

Bourdon said he expects non-European manufacturers of injection molding machines to also take up the energy labeling system after it has been launched. Other Euromap initiatives have been adopted around the world, he said.

Peter Neumann, president and CEO of Engel, said the labeling system should encourage all machine manufacturers to raise standards in energy efficiency.

“With such an initiative, you introduce a ‘push’ into the industry. That’s something I see as very positive,” he told European Plastics News.