Milacron Inc. is launching a new injection molding software business by introducing two products, called ProcessMedic and MachineMedic.
The software works with Milacron presses equipped with the company's Xtreem controller.
As a personal computer-based controller, the Xtreem boasts open architecture. It performs like an office PC, running any third-party, Windows-compatible software.
ProcessMedic and MachineMedic are the first of many planned, Milacron-branded software products that play off of the PC-based nature of the machine, said Dale Werle, vice president and general manager of Milacron's U.S. plastics machinery business. The Xtreem controller also is Internet accessible.
Both ProcessMedic and MachineMedic are resident on the Xtreem NT Prime controller. They are sold as an option for NT/ST models.
ProcessMedic is used to calibrate and test presses at the factory - so it serves as a record of how the press performed in ``as-new'' condition. The functional equivalent of a process data collection system, the software can monitor and plot about 10,000 variables. It offers configurable alarms, samples and other features. Milacron said the software makes it easy to track variations in the process before a bad part is produced.
The new diagnostic program, MachineMedic, taps into the controller's data acquisition loop. The user simultaneously can observe and capture input/output data in real time, from up to 15 different variables. The variables can be recovered and plotted. Intermittent events, such as sticking parts, also can be plotted.
In other controller news, Milacron is promoting the loading of Moldflow Corp.'s Moldflow Plastics Xpert (MPX) software on the Xtreem controller. MPX can be ordered as an option, pre-installed on the company's injection presses. MPX guides press operators through setup, automates the ``design of experiment'' phase and automatically controls production by changing process variables to maintain peak levels of quality and output.
Moldflow is based in Wayland, Mass.
In other Milacron news:
* Milacron's Plastics Technology Group's ServTek unit is aiming its injection molding screw, the PVCStar, at corrosive applications such as PVC and chlorinated PVC. ServTek claims the ceramic protection on the screw smear-head tip and end cap protects the screw substrate 20 times longer than typical chrome plating. The coating resists damaging chloride plating in the resin that can infiltrate microcracks and blistering in the chrome plating. The ceramic chemically bonds the plating to the substrate.
* Akron Milacron is getting groovy, man. The single-screw extruder operation is moving into the world of grooved-feed extruders. Traditionally, grooved-feed extruders have been popular in Europe. In the United States, processors have preferred smooth-bore extruders. But Akron Milacron said its new series of grooved-feed extruders can turn out 30-100 percent more melt than a comparably sized smooth-bore machine. Grooved-bore extruders can provide a cost-effective boost in output for U.S. extrusion companies, said Jim Frankland, Akron Milacron business unit manager. Other processing advantages include output that is more linear with screw speed and the ability to handle slippery additives at the feed port with no loss of stability or output. Akron Milacron's line of grooved barrels has a length-to-to-diameter ratio of 30 to one. The extruders come in 45, 60, 75, 90 and 120 millimeter bore sizes. A variety of groove patterns is available to handle a wide range of applications. The extruders are built in Batavia.
* Milacron is marketing Staubli Corp.'s magnetic mold clamping system, called QMC 121. Staubli magnets support molds on injection presses with clamping forces from 40-4,000 tons. Robert Grumski, manager of Milacron's process support business unit, said the machinery maker did comprehensive research and testing before picking Staubli. Staubli, based in Duncan, S.C., makes quick mold changing systems, multicoupling systems and a range of quick-disconnect couplings. John Bradley, Staubli's plastic industry manager, said the keys to QMC 121 are a patented magnetic pot technology that provides greater clamping force in smaller areas and a patented flux monitoring that reduces the chance of operator error.
Milacron's Plastics Technology Group is based in Batavia
Tel. (888) 645-2276, fax (800) 282-8082.