Machine Control Case Studies

Case Study 101: Servo Industry Sector: Machine Control • Fiberglass Fiberization

New Technology Applied:

  • Allen Bradley ControlLogix
  • Allen Bradley Servo Drives
  • AMCI Encoders
  • Rockwell RSView32 SCADA System

Project Description:
Staneco Corporation designed a fiberglass insulation machine which operated faster and more efficiently than the old equipment. Four fiberizer units deposited fiberglass on a moving conveyor. Any three could be used or all four depending on the type of insulation being made. The fiberizers were pivoted and deposited the fiberglass in a sine wave pattern. The pivot speed and conveyor speed were all adjustable depending on the product and stored recipes. To make uniform fiberglass, the pattern on the conveyor had to be adjusted. The phase angle of each pivoting fiberizer had to be calculated (frequency of pivot and conveyor speed both affect the phase angle). The information was used to control servo motors which controlled the motion of the pivot.

Project Outcome:
The key to successful resolution of this process problem was deciphering the complex relationship between belt speed and controlling the deposition sine wave of the fiberizer. The result was improved consistency, quality of product, and higher production rates.

Case Study 114: Extruders Industry Sector: Machine Control • PVC Compounder System

Technology Replaced:

  • Relay Panel

New Technology Applied:

  • Allen Bradley SLC 500
  • Allen Bradley PanelView

Project Description:
Staneco Corporation designed a control system to produce batches of compounded PVC. The system automatically weighed out batches of PVC resin and calcium carbonate. The material was conveyed with a pneumatic conveying system into a compounder drum. The drum was rotated and heated with the temperature being monitored. A liquid stabilizer and additional chemicals were automatically added to the mix when the temperature reached predetermined temperatures. At the end of the cycle, the material was unloaded into a cooling drum until it was cool enough to be transported into a storage silo. The material was then automatically distributed to several lines of extruders based on demand from the extruders.

Project Outcome:
The new control system eliminated repeat failures which were greatly impacting production and quality.

Case Study 110: Blending Industry Sector: Machine Control • Alloy Blending Machine

Technology Replaced:

  • Obsolete Relay Pane

New Technology Applied:

  • Allen Bradley MicroLogix 1500
  • Allen Bradley PanelView
  • AMCI Stepper Motor

Project Description:
Staneco Corporation designed controls for a machine that produced alloys in small batches. There were 20 recipes for different alloys. The cycle started by purging the chamber of air followed by gases being introduced into the chamber. The metal was heated to the required temperature by an induction heater. When at temperature, the crucible was then tilted in steps at different speeds using a servo motor to pour the metal into a mold. The crucible was then returned to the home position and atmospheric pressure was re-introduced. Temperatures were recorded on an electronic chart recorder.

Project Outcome:
The new control system provided increased reliability along with a more efficient operator interface.