Sterling Inc. is marketing its auxiliary equipment under its Sterling brand name. No more Sterlco, Sterltech, Ball & Jewell and Sterling Material Processing.
Sterling had marketed its divisions with separate names and logos. Sterling announced the integrated approach earlier this year. Its product divisions now focus on four cornerstones of plastics processing: regulate, which includes all of Sterling's heating and cooling equipment; granulate, for granulators; automate, for robots and automation; and integrate, including drying, conveying, blending and extrusion product lines.
As part of ACS Group, Sterling will relocate its operations this year from Milwaukee to a larger new centralized ACS factory in the Milwaukee suburb of New Berlin.
In new product news, Sterling announced its CDS, or central drying station, which uses only one dryer with multiple hoppers. That way it dries several different resins or colors at the same time.
The CDS allows for quick mold changes, by switching the route of material conveying from one hopper to the next without having to empty and clean the hopper. An isolation valve separates hoppers, so one hopper can have a material change while the remaining hoppers continue to operate.
Sterling also said its SDF series of medium-capacity desiccant dryers feature a high-efficiency design, providing consistent, average dew-points as low as minus 80°F. An energy-efficient conditioning cycle reduces energy consumption up to 40 percent compared with traditional carousel-style designs.
Sterling claims the design virtually eliminates temperature and dew-point spikes.
After the centralized manufacturing is set up in New Berlin, ACS will continue to have its headquarters in Wood Dale, Ill.
In other ACS product news:
* The new AEC-brand digital dosing system, called the DD series, simplifies material changes. To remove the additive station, just lift two quick disconnects. With an optional spare station, material changeover is immediate and allows for cleaning-out away from the machine. The DD's control automatically calculates calibration values, allowing for direct input of desired percentages. The dosing unit can feed between one-half pound and 800 pounds of material an hour. The DD-2 dosing unit runs dual additives at different rates.
* The AEC-brand AERA-a and AERAII-a series of servo-driven robots boast a touch-screen controller based on the Windows XP operating system. The robot's controller has Ethernet and telephone connectivity for communications with an injection press, Intranet, Extranet or Internet use. It can communicate with other devices, such as vision systems and other pieces of auxiliary equipment.
* AEC has expanded the ASD series of compact dehumidifying dryers, with the new ASD 60. A dual-bed design allows the moisture-saturated desiccant bed to regenerate without interrupting the drying cycle. An electric air valve switches the operation from one bed to the other. The ASD series features the company's Hi-Core technology, which places the electric heating element inside the hollow core of the desiccant canister. That allows the desiccant to cool and regenerate in less than one hour.
* The company is offering a new removable hopper on some of its OS series of batch weigh blenders. To change colors, you switch out the plastic jug in the hopper opening and replace with another jug holding the new color. The jugs reseal, so you can save unused material until it is needed again. The removable hopper is available on the OS 007 and OS 014 batch blenders, which offer blending rates up to 900 pounds an hour.
* The AEC-brand AFC-S series central vacuum pump safety filter, to collect dust and fines to protect the vacuum pump from damage. The AFC-S operates as part of a central conveying system. The durable central filter is made of corrosion- and abrasion-resistant stainless steel and cast aluminum. A transparent collection chamber is easy to remove, using quick disconnects.