Injection moulding machinery supplier Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery UK Ltd., Stoke Mandeville, Buckinghamshire, UK, a division of Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery GmbH, has launched a new testing service which aims to give manufacturers the opportunity to reduce their energy consumption by understanding their machinery’s energy usage. It is expected that the service will allow companies to make more educated machinery investment decisions.
The company states that it already carries out more than 300 performance measurements for its customers annually, and recently invested in three new Fluke energy monitoring devices to extend this service. By plugging this tool into an existing machine, including legacy and competitor moulding systems, the company explains that it conducts energy tests on-site using a real production scenario. Calculating the energy used in kilowatts for each kilogram of raw material converted, the team is then able to provide the customer with a credible energy consumption comparison with a newer Sumitomo (SHI) Demag machine.
“Most of the time, customers are looking for the justification to switch from a hydraulic machine to all-electric,” stated Nick Stockton, Technical Manager, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag Plastics Machinery UK Ltd. “But equally, the report can flag to customers changes to the process that they can adopt to reduce energy consumption on their existing injection moulding fleet.”
The company explained that although many machinery suppliers present top-level estimates for energy savings, the real proof is when energy tests are based on the entire machine set up and offer a like-for-like comparison. Stockton added, “For a genuine benchmark, you need to compare apples with apples. This means testing the entire process running the same product before and after new kit is installed, with all ancillary equipment plugged in. It is the only true way to gauge the energy and performance improvements.”
In addition to examining energy performance, the testing service also reportedly examines other factors including the parallel movements and the impact of drive cycle times on output. Using too much clamp force, running at full dosing speed and leaving a pump running when the machine is not operational are all common examples of where energy can be wasted. The results of this examination are then compiled into a comprehensive report, offering companies data that can be included in their annual CSR reports.
“Company stakeholders aren’t just looking at the bottom line, but also non-financial information,” Stockton continued. “Sustainability now features strongly in these annual reports, and shows the direct impact that business decisions have in relation to trust and future governance.”