The Zhafir subsidiary of Chinese press maker Ningbo Haitian Plastic Machinery Group has developed a new all-electric injection molding machine, called Mercury.
Zhafir demonstrated two prototype Mercury machines an open house held Nov. 26-27 at its new 43,055-square-foot assembly hall in Ebermannsdorf, where it builds Venus all-electrics.
Zhafir CEO Helmar Franz said the company will show a production-ready Mercury at the K2010 trade show. Production is scheduled to start in 2011, initially with clamping forces of 55- and 135-metric tons. Franz said the press will be offered with “a very limited number of high end options as standard, such as for injection compression molding.” The Mercury will enable processors and tool designers to produce more complex parts and use plastics that are difficult to process.
As part of its “revolutionary design,” the Mercury has replaced conventional round tie bars and separate machine cladding with two thick, flat steel sheets on both sides of the machine. The sheets, made by parent company Haitian in China, provide the same level as mechanical stability as tie bars, the company claims.
The presses are also narrower, enabling more machines to be fitted into a production hall.
Unlike conventional machines, which combine plastification and injection within one injection unit, the Mercury uses a non-moving-screw plastification unit and a separate injection unit, so that customers can use various screw and injection plunger pistons.
Franz said that design “avoids compromise” and gives “exceptionally high melt quality and constant injection volume for consistent injected weight.”
There is no non-return valve in the plunger, with associated material degradation, and “practically no limits to injection speed,” Franz said.
Franz says that a Japanese company has been known to take a similar — but much more expensive — approach of separate plastification and injection units, but without electric drive.
Zhafir is delivering a 55-ton, pre-series Mercury to a customer for trial and feedback.