August 2001

From University of Warwick

New magnetic tool lock attracts 40% - 60% time saving for plastics manufacturers

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One of the few things that causes delays for modern plastic injection moulding machines is the time taken to physically uncouple the injection moulding tool in order to reset the machine for a new task. However, a new magnetic tool locking device, developed and tested by the University of Warwick with Staffordshire company Magnaforce, UK will transform that 10 minute task to a single simple flick of a switch.

The Magna-lock device replaces the old physical tool connections with a simple strong and accurate magnetic bond that can be applied or removed at the turn of a switch. It can be applied to 99% of existing injection moulding machines without the need to modify existing moulding tools. As well as saving on the 40-60% of the time between jobs turnarounds on the machinery the device will also eliminate the tool damage and expensive downtime associated with ejector bars breaking or seizing.

The University of Warwick's Warwick Manufacturing Group were able to assist Magnaforce UK Ltd to develop and test the new Magna-lock device as part of the University's Innovation-Direct programme, which provides small companies with practical help on all aspects of design and innovation from market through to manufacture. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund with support from Sun Microsystems, the 2 million initiative gives Midlands SME's quick and easy access to expertise on product and process development. Initial support is provided free of charge to qualifying companies.

This article comes from Science Blog. Copyright 2004

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