Bonn, Germany — Kautex Maschinenbau GmbH reduced time for an on-site commissioning of a new system control for one of its blow molding machines to a single day for a customer in Spain.
The commissioning of complex applications and production systems often takes several days or weeks with considerable downtimes, according to Kautex officials, but virtual development and testing environments have sped on-site implementation.
For the Spanish customer, the control system change optimized the cycle time on the post-processing station of a Kautex KBB400D blow molding machine. The new control was developed in the Kautex factory in Bonn and tested on a virtual post-processing station.
A Kautex service technician visited the customer's production site and completed the process with the commissioning and final adjustments taking only one day thanks to a virtual link to a Kautex programmer.
Kautex says it was able to restart the customer's system in half the time originally calculated.
Kautex Project Manager Dirk Hiller sees great potential in the process.
"The simulation process, which we use for pre-commissioning and testing on virtual Kautex systems, reduces time and staffing requirements for the implementation on site," Hiller said in a news release. "Digital twinning of our machines means that we are now in a better position to adapt the control of the production system to changing conditions and production requirements more quickly."
"Digital twins" make it possible to test new configurations and technical processes in a virtual surrounding to improve the design of physical products, according to Kautex.
The company has been building advanced extrusion blow molding machines for 85 years. Kautex employs about 550 people with the main production sites in Germany and China. About 150 of the employees handle sales and service on all continents.