Düsseldorf, Germany — Harald Schmidt's M3 micromolding machines now have short cycle times, thanks to continuously precompressing the melt, he said at a news conference for MHS-Mold Hotrunner Solutions Inc.
"It's geared to high-volume, precision micromolding," Schmidt said.
Traditional injection molding — both micro and regular-part molding — ramps up the melt compression on each shot, then quickly injects under high pressure, before the pressure falls back down.
In MHS' three-step technology, a low-temperature screw compresses the melt and feeds the material to an injection unit inside the hot runner, so the melt always remains pressured and highly compressed. The residence time of the melt is increased.
The result is a very fast cycle that can make micromolding more of a mass-production process, according to Schmidt. For example, Schmidt said an eight-cavity mold can run medical-grade resin at 4.5- to 5-second cycles — or 40 million to 50 million parts per year.