At Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd.'s 12,000-square-foot booth at NPE2018, there's a sharp focus on the Canadian company's packaging product business.
The company's HyPET 225 preform manufacturing system is running live at the booth, where the machine is using a 48-cavity mold to produce an 11.6-gram preform in a 6.2-second cycle time.
Pierre Pruvost, business manager of PET systems, said during a May 9 booth tour that the preform design can yield seven different small-format bottle designs. The varied options enable brands to respond to changing consumer demands, he said.
"Consumer behaviors are changing," Pruvost said, adding that many of the changes in consumer behavior are driven by the millennial demographic.
"This situation is actually creating a challenge for North American converters. … At Husky, we are very well-known for our large system solutions, but much less on the low volume," he added.
The HyPET 225 is the company's response to demand from both brand owners and converters who specialize in low to medium volumes, he said. The output range for the machine is between 15,000-28,000 preforms per hour, depending on the application.
Husky's Dave Morton, vice president of multilayer barrier solutions, highlighted the company's multilayer technology, which uses activated light, temperature and decorative effects for product personalization, while also providing barrier protection for the product.
"What we're really excited to show people is possibilities because really when we talk about 'multilayer,' it can do many things," Morton said of color gradation and thermal and fluorescent additives, among other effects that he categorized under "smart packaging."
John Quail, general manager of customer success in the Americas, also discussed updates to Husky's ShotScope NX plantwide manufacturing execution system [MES]. The system now features a new productivity dashboard that tracks cycle time, cavitation and the amount of plastic resin going into each part.
The company also launched preassembled hot runner kits at the show, allowing customers to do in-the-field preventive maintenance much quicker, Quail said. A remote interactive support product — what Quail called "a merged reality application" — that is available as an app was also shown for the first time.
"It allows you to get access to Husky experts when you need it," he said.
Husky also showed its upgraded line of Altanium Mold Controllers — Neo5, Delta5 and Matrix5 — which the company said now have faster boot up and screen response times.