Plastics News West Coast correspondent Roger Renstrom reported these items from NPE 1997, which was held June 16-20 in Chicago.
Omron Electronics shows object sensor
Omron Electronics Inc. of Schaumburg, Ill., exhibited a photoelectric sensor that can detect glass, plastic and other transparent objects.
The E3S-R transparent object detection sensor, starting at $145, can detect the presence or absence of shrink wrapping and can sense glass or plastic containers on an in-line conveyor in either horizontal or vertical configurations.
A stability indicator shows whether the sensor is positioned properly for feeding and routing applications, edge detection or verification of the product's presence. The unit has a sensing distance up to 39 inches and a multiturn sensitivity adjustment with indicator.
Gammaflux offers monitoring software
Gammaflux LP of Sterling, Va., introduced a new software package that measures resistance online hourly and can anticipate heater failure in a hot-runner system.
The Mold Monitor package starts at $22,000 for use on 30 zones with Gammaflux's series 9500 hot-runner temperature control systems.
The software compares the hourly temperature readings over every zone with a historical baseline and allows an operator to predict heater or thermocouple failure. An alarm appears for any zone in which the values exceed the baseline by 40 percent. Timely maintenance can maximize press uptime.
Gammaflux supplies the software as an update for current series 9500 users.
Burger Engineering introduces heater
Auxiliary products manufacturer Burger Engineering Inc. of Olathe, Kan., introduced a simple, compact mechanical device for heating and maintaining constant mold temperature.
The thermal-expansion-driven Watchdog mold heater, listed for less than $400, relies on the expansion or contraction of temperature-sensitive xylene to adjust the cooling flow rate as needed. The material regulates the water flow and temperature running through the device.
The Watchdog has no electrical parts, eliminates the need for an external heating source and requires less maintenance than traditional mold heaters.