Monday 28 December 2015

Most viewed blog posts in 2015

In this blog post I will share with you some analytical info of this blog. The basic research question is: Which were the 3 most viewed blog posts of 2015 on Juster-3PO?

You can watch now below the results and a short summary with key take aways:

Let's get started with 3rd place:

3rd place

In this post I showed the most important required skills for being a leader in your field and take over responsibilities.

Key takeaways:
4 major skills are necessary to build a leading environment:
  1. Delegating tasks
  2. Motivating your people
  3. Figuring out the values of people
  4. Training your communication

2nd place:

In this post I compared the electric cars BMW i3 and Tesla model S regarding their technology, design and all-over conception strategies.

Key takeaways:

1) Battery system: Tesla uses normal notebook cell type batteries and holds the patents on how to build up battery systems consisting of more than 5000 cells. BMW started a partnership with Samsung SDI to develop its own batteries which made BMW a function of Samsung and their decisions.

2) All-electric car vs. semi-electric car: the Tesla model S has one electric engine and can be considered to be an all-electric car. The BMW i3 has an electrical engine and in addition, a 34 PS Otto- combustion engine that generates additional battery power. Dual systems always result in additional space consumption and maintenance work.

3) Technology innovations: One innovation at a time. Tesla's innovation in the model S was the the central positioned computer system (batteries and engine were already introduced in the previous models), whereas the i3 uses a new engine, battery system, and a carbon-fibre reinforced plastics structure (CFRP) for the whole body. These are nice things but contain the risk of overloading both: the customer and the manufacturer itself.

1st place:

In this post I presented the essential beliefs of Walt Disney in the light of “What can we learn from them that improves our leading skills?” 
Key takeaways:
  1. You have to trust yourself, especially when no one is doing so!
  2. You have to take risks!
  3. You have to see leadership as a source of inspiration, innovation and focus!
  4. You need to sell yourself!
  5. You have to change your thinking about failure!
  6. You must see indestructibleness as your best friend!
  7. You have to improve yourself a life long!

Thank you for following and reading! Stay tuned for fresh knowledge! In 2016 I will continue with topics around technology and innovation in polymer plastics industry, investigating topics in the leadership fields and try out new things like a facebook page which can support this blog. 


Tuesday 17 November 2015

Cyber physical production systems (CPPS) in plastics industry - Part II: How injection moulding machine manufacturer will change polymer processing

Welcome to the second part of this series about Cyber Physical Production Systems (CPPS) in plastics industry. (Here is link to part I). In this part, we will have a detailed look on how parts will be produced by the injection moulding technique in the future using CPPS applications. I would like to present to you the point of views of the major injection moulding machine manufacturers regarding future developments. These will have a major influence on, whether the CPPS will be a successful story in the future, or not.
Arburg: The concept of Arburg is based on the individualization of plastic parts in a large production series. This can be made by combining additive manufacturing with the injection moulding technique in a digitally networked process chain. In the opinion of Arburg, Industry 4.0 consists in an individual solution integrated in mass production.  For example, Arburg presented at the Hannover Fair 2015 (Germany) the production of a “rocker-type light switch”. This is a mass produced part by injection moulding. However, it can combine an individualization step by using the Arburg’s Freeformer. For example, the customer can “paint” his/her signature in a digital terminal (e.g: tablet).This information is stored on a chip card, which is later placed in the controlling unit of the injection moulding machine, where part of the information is converted by laser  into a data matrix code on the backside of the produced light switch. Then, the light switch is placed into the Freeformer (additive manufacturing unit), where the information from the chip card is again read and the signature printed on the surface of the light switch. After this process, an automated quality check is done and the light switch is packed. In parallel, a homepage with all the relevant production information is set up enabling worldwide accessibility. The following youtube-video helps understanding it better.

ENGEL’s injection 4.0 approach aims at reaching optimal efficiency, productivity, availability, quality, and flexibility on the production site. Injection 4.0 has basically 3 core elements: smart machines (focus on self-adapting, decentralized systems), smart production (horizontal and vertical data integration) and smart services (focus on remote maintenance tools). How those three work along each other was shown at the FAKUMA 2015 (Germany). Apart of that, injection moulding machines can be equipped with the iQ (intelligent Quality)-weight control as well as with the iQ-clamp control. The iQ-weight control enables a response to viscosity changes during processing. Every final part will have consistency in weight through the right timed switch over from the injection pressure to the packing pressure. The iQ-clamp control estimates the mould breathing and applies the necessary amount of clamping force. This allows keeping the mould breathing constant although process conditions might change.

Prof. Helmar Franz from Haitian pointed out at the 2nd International Injection Moulding Conference 2015(Germany) that the future challenges are in the integration of injection moulding techniques into other technologies such as thermoforming, die casting, and additive manufacturing, as well as to integrate other conversion techniques into the injection moulding technique. Apart of that, future challenge lies in using the, as he calls it “big data meet machinery”, which can result in the development of new business models.

Krauss Maffei continuous its way towards Industry 4.0 with the Adaptive Process Control (APC), which facilitates quality control by analyzing material induced interferences over a viscosity number. As a consequence, underfilling and overfilling processes are minimized. The change-over point will be estimated for each shot ensuring that switch-over follows at the right time. We still tend to have a constant process replication, which is from a quality point of view not efficient enough to resolve influences of material and external manufacturing conditions.

Sumitomo Heavy Industries is known for all-electric injection moulding machines. They put their future outlook in improving the “Zero Molding”, which was implemented in 2008. The idea of “Zero Molding” together with its functions Flow Front Control (FFC), Minimum Clamping Mold (MCM), and Simple Process Setting (SPS) is to enable an optimal production of plastic parts with minimum defects, faults, and losses. The future zero failure technology, which meets also the idea of CPPS will contain a web based dialog between production sites, local affiliates, and SHI Demag. Furthermore, Sumitomo will also provide platforms for data storage, informatics visualization, and diagnostic processing.

Let’s jump to the last but not least manufacturer: Wittman-Battenfeld: “Wittmann 4.0” is called their main key stone in realizing an overall integration. The new B6p controlling unit of the injection moulding machine allows to connect and control all attached robotics and periphery devices in one uniform windows surface. This allows an optimal organization of the whole production process, starting from material supply to automation process. The data is collected and stored in the central mould database. In case the mould is changed to other machines, the central computer will provide the devices with the right data. Another learning effect is reached by storing all production errors and make them accessible. Summing it up: Battenfeld believes that together with the Internet of things approach, the injection moulding machines will start communicating, “talking” more to the peripheral equipment allowing to increase productivity.

To sum up: there are already similarities in the approaches of all the manufactures, especially when it comes to control occurring process instabilities caused by material or external influences (ENGEL’s iQ weight control; Kraus Maffei’s Adaptive Process Control or Sumitomo’s Zero Moulidng strategy). Furthermore, allover production strategies, where the injection moulding machine is not just a well-connected piece within the production, have entered the prototype phase. Fact is that we still plan our products in a linear way but the world around us changes in an exponential way. CPPS might helping combating a more exponential way of thinking in the world of plastics manufacturing. I believe that in the next five years fully integrated CPPS will be state of the art in plastics industry.

Share this knowledge with your friends!




[1] Proceedings 2nd IIMC, IKV Aachen

[2] Kunstoffe, 9/2015, p.103

[3] Kunstoffe, 9/2015, p.32 - 40