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- inject 4.0
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“The demand for products and solutions that enhance the stability, efficiency and safety of the production process continues to grow. The strong interest of processors in Packaging Days 2018 confirms this trend,” says Christian Reisinger, head of Direct Sales at ENGEL. Participants – the majority of whom were managing directors, purchasers and technical managers – represented both international businesses with local production operations and companies based in South America.
For all of them, the priority is to make products of high quality while the efficiency factor is also becoming more important. This involves sustainability, energy efficiency, higher productivity and lower unit costs as well as taking control of complex processes in a simple and secure manner. In many instances, Industry 4.0 technologies, such as the intelligent assistance systems from ENGEL’s iQ product family, are enabling processors to maximise the potential of machines without requiring machine operators to acquire specialist knowledge. Presentations and discussions therefore revolved around inject 4.0, as ENGEL refers to Industry 4.0; another focus was on innovative process technologies, mould making trends and the automation of high-performance processes.
Thin-wall injection moulding was given special emphasis. In South America, a wide range of packaging – everything from small food containers to 18-litre buckets – is produced on high-performance ENGEL e-motion and e-speed machines using thin-wall injection moulding; this is often combined with IML (in-mould labelling), which enables decorated packaging to be produced ready for sale in a single work step. Swiss-based Beck Automation, a technology partner to ENGEL in the field of IML automation, staged a presentation of its own at the Packaging Days. The mould manufacturer Stacktech also appeared in partnership with ENGEL. The Canadian company specialises in such fields as thin-wall packaging and caps and closures.
Demand in South America ranges from injection moulding machines and sytem solutions for the production of thin-wall containers to machines that produce caps and closures and pallets. In the various national markets, the all-electric ENGEL e-cap, e-motion and e-mac injection moulding machines have become firmly established in the production of caps and closures while large-scale ENGEL duo machines are used to make pallets.
In South America, ENGEL is regarded as a technological frontrunner and pioneer in the field of energy efficient drive technology – and Packaging Days has underlined that reputation. Another advantage of ENGEL is the high level of expertise in systems solutions. ENGEL is a single-source supplier of complete manufacturing cells which in addition to injection moulding machines also include process technology, robots and other peripherals. “Demand for systems solutions is rising in South America,” confirms Reisinger. “In particular, the automation of processes is becoming much more important.”
ENGEL has maintained a presence in South America for many years. The company has a sales and service subsidiary in São Paulo, Brazil, and works with established sales partners in all other countries. Pamatec in Argentina, Euromaq in Chile and Sinemco in Colombia employ their own technicians who support clients on site in close collaboration with ENGEL experts. Another partner was recently gained in Colombia: PM Tec in Cota (close to Bogotá) has its own technology and training centre where customers of ENGEL and Sinemco can attend training courses and conduct mould trials on ENGEL injection moulding machines.