Flow Control – the water flow meter for injection moulding

Flow Control takes over the continuous electronic flow measurement of the injection moulding tool cooling circuit.

Flow Control continuously measures the flow rate and return temperature from the individual cooling zones during the operation of your injection moulding machine. If the set tolerance limits for the rate of flow or temperature values are exceeded, an indicator light in the status lamp array immediately alerts the machine operator. Flow Control can also send an error signal to the injection moulding machine. You then have the option of evaluating this error signal in your preferred form, for example as a bad piece signal or by stopping the production process. This provides early notice if flow reductions in the water cooling circuits have exceeded a critical value, which is mostly caused by mineral deposits.

Flow Control can be very easily retrofitted to the existing water flow regulators of your injection moulding machine and functions extremely reliably.

Why use electronic flow monitoring?

Deposits from the cooling water contaminate the cooling circuits in an injection moulding tool. These deposits gradually restrict the internal diameter of the cooling circuits. This in turn causes problems with the flow rate, problems that are only rarely detected by standard flow controllers. The consequence is an increased production of scrap parts.

Our electronic flow monitoring solves this problem. Flow Control continuously measures the flow rate and the return temperature of the individual cooling zones.

Advantages

  • Simple retrofit in the existing return piping of your injection moulding tools
  • You can also install Flow Control yourself without any great effort
  • The sensors and actuators are completely pre-assembled in the measuring units
  • Compact measuring units in 4 and 6 unit designs
  • The measuring units can be variably combined and easily connected through a combi-BUS cable
  • On the detection of an error a rapid and highly visible alarm signal is given on the status lamp array or the transmission of an error signal to the injection moulding machine
  • Documentation of all measured values with the possibility to transfer the values to MES and QM systems
  • Stores all error messages, status messages and change of user

Digital and versatile – the Flow Control monitoring unit

The Flow Control monitoring unit is far more than a digital flowmeter. The user-friendly touch display allows you to see the current zone-specific flow rates and return temperatures of all of the connected circuits at a glance. The temperatures and flow rate limits for each injection mould can be individual set. Flow Control currently supports up to 40 cooling circuits per injection moulding tool. Flow Control offers the possibility to assign a separate designation to each cooling circuit on the tool and can store up to 250 tool data sets on the integrated memory. It is also possible to upload or download data records using FTP or USB.

Advantages

  • Monitoring of up to 40 temperature control circuits
  • Display and setting values for temperature accurate down to 0.1°C
  • Display and setting values for the flow rate accurate to 0.1 L/min
  • Temperature and flow rate limits are freely selectable within the measuring ranges for each circuit
  • Display of the exceeding or undershooting the respective temperature control circuit on the display, signalling via the status lamp array or the transmission of an error signal to the injection moulding machine
  • Monitoring is synchronous with the machine cycle only during the shaping phase
  • Any fluctuations in temperature and flow rate due to tool movements or hose deformation are detected, but no unnecessary error output results
  • Uploading / downloading data records is possible using FTP or USB
  • Transfer of measured data to your IT system via OPCUA, for example to a higher-level MES or QM system
  • Flow Control has an industry 4.0 interface

Precise and long-lasting – the Flow Control flow sensors

Flow Control uses only high-quality and long-lasting sensor technology for measuring and monitoring the flow rate and temperature of the water circuit

 Advantages

  • High operating reliability and life span of the flow sensors using the eddy current method
  • Accurate flow measurement results even under extreme temperature fluctuations
  • Excellent media resistance and insensitivity to contamination
  • Measuring sensors have no direct contact with the media
  • Maximum pressure 6 bar at 100°C
  • The units are installed in a closed housing making them insensitive to contamination and damage

FAQs regarding the topic of flow rate measurement

Our electronic flow monitoring solves this problem. Flow Control continuously measures the flow rate and the return temperature of the individual cooling zones. If the set tolerance limits for the rate of flow or temperature values are exceeded, an indicator light in the status lamp array immediately alerts the machine operator. Flow Control can also send an error signal to the injection moulding machine. You then have the option of evaluating this error signal in your preferred form, for example as a bad piece signal or by stopping the production process. Flow Control monitoring and error output is synchronous with the machine cycle and only active during a defined period of the machine cycle. Flow Control operates synchronously with the cycle of your injection moulding machine. Monitoring is switched on and off using two signals from the injection moulding machine, for example, the “tool closed” switches the monitoring on and “tool open” switches the monitoring off. This means that any movement of the tool or deformation of the cooling water hoses, which cause undesirable fluctuations in the flow rate and tightness are completely ignored and an unnecessary erroneous error sign is prevented. Flow Control only initiates and alert signal when it is necessary and unwanted production of scrap products is a thing of the past.

This is very easy. As an electronic flow rate monitor Flow Control stores all incidents of the limits being exceeded or undercut in a separate alarm log. All other relevant details are also recorded, such as the number of the cooling circuit, the level of the password logged in at the time of the error and the time and the type of the error that occurred. Flow Control automatically transfers all of the measured data to your IT system using the network interface, for example to a higher-level MES or QM system. This enables all QM relevant requirements to be met and you are on the safe side in all matters relating to process control.

No, that isn’t true. With Flow Control, we have developed a system that can be installed in the shortest possible time. You can also install Flow Control yourself – without the use of external technicians and without expensive retrofitting of the machine. The use of 4 or 6 measuring units enables the installation on the injection moulding machine to be very flexible. Simply find a suitable place for the measuring units on your injection moulding machine and install them. The individual measuring units are linked by a separate connecting cable and a plug-in system, irrespective of whether you opt for 4 or 6 measuring units and regardless of the number and sequence of the “independent measuring units”.  Your injection moulding process is now monitored for flow rate and temperature, reports the presence of an error internally and externally via an MES or QM system and documents all error messages, status messages and changes of user including any changes to parameters and settings.

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