MSV 2015: Arburg Provides Practical Demonstration of High-Volume, Single-Unit Batch Production

MSV 2015: Arburg Provides Practical Demonstration of High-Volume, Single-Unit Batch Production

MSV 2015: Arburg provides practical demonstration of high-volume, single-unit batch production

  • Combined: injection moulding and additive manufacturing turn high-volume parts into one-off items
  • Transparent: Industry 4.0 technologies network the production of individualised office scissors
  • Industrial additive manufacturing process: Arburg Plastic Freeforming (AKF)

Lossburg. Combining injection moulding, additive manufacturing and Industry 4.0 technologies makes it economically viable to produce and individualise large-volume products in single unit batches in an automated, digitally networked cyberphysical production system. Arburg will use a production line for individualised office scissors to demonstrate just how such a flexible integrated production set-up can work on Stand 20 in Hall G1 at the MSV trade fair in Brno, Czech Republic, from 14 to 18 September 2015.

Dr. Daniel Orel, Managing Director of Arburg's Czech subsidiary in Brno, believes that the company has chosen the perfect exhibit for the MSV 2015: "Industry 4.0 is currently a hot topic in the Czech Republic. The MSV trade fair has also decided to focus on this topic this year. Our networked process chain is certain to hit the mark here. As a pioneer in Industry 4.0, we can already show visitors what many other companies are still only talking about. This is another opportunity for us to prove our superior expertise."

Combining injection moulding and additive manufacturing

Individualised high-volume production: the process chain shown by Arburg at the MSV 2015 squares the circle by combining injection moulding and additive manufacturing. The production cycle starts at the injection moulding station. Here, visitors to the stand can choose between scissor versions for left and right-handed users, with pointed or rounded ends. The required version is recorded on a smart card, via which production release for the injection moulding process takes place. The overmoulding of the scissor handles is performed on an electric Allrounder 370 E.

Human/robot cooperation
The injection moulding machine is equipped with a linear Multilift V robotic system, which is permanently monitored via a light curtain. In order to enable flexible and fast product changes, human and robotic system work interactively hand-in-hand: The operator places the desired scissor blank directly into the gripper. The robotic system then transfers the insert into the mould. The cycle time for overmoulding the handles in PP is around 60 seconds. A DM code is then applied by laser. This means that every product becomes an information carrier that identifies itself to the machine during the process and supplies information for the next production step. The finished scissors can be measured at a testing station. This process and quality data are stored centrally in the ALS Arburg host computer system and can be retrieved on a part-specific basis via the individual DM code.

Individualisation of moulded parts using the Freeformer

At the Freeformer station, individually configurable lettering made from PP can be applied onto the handle of the scissors in an additive process. This takes around two minutes at a layer height of 0.21 millimetre. The end product of this highly flexible manufacturing and processing operation are scissors in single-unit batches featuring individualised lettering.

With the Freeformer, fully functional plastic parts can be produced directly from 3D CAD data using standard granulates, without the need for a mould. The two standard discharge units allow two components to be processed. This also means that it is possible to produce parts with different colours, hard-soft combinations or water-soluble supports that can be removed at a later stage.

Transparent, traceable production

The Arburg host computer system (ALS), which integrates the various autonomous stations and records all the relevant production data and test results before transmitting these to a central web server, plays a central role in the entire manufacturing process. Visitors can use mobile devices to retrieve the product, process and quality data for their personal scissors from the producing-specific website on the cloud by means of the DM code.


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Arburg will demonstrate how injection moulding and additive manufacture can be combined at the MSV 2015 trade fair.

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Individualising high-volume parts: the Freeformer can apply individually configurable lettering made of PP to office scissors in an additive manufacturing process.

Photos: ARBURG

About Arburg

German machine manufacturer Arburg is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of injection moulding machines with clamping forces between 125 and 5,000 kN. This is complemented by robotic systems, customer- and sector-specific turnkey solutions and further peripherals. An innovative additive manufacturing system was added to the plastic processing range in 2013.

The company places the topic of production efficiency at the centre of all its activities, taking into account the entire value-added chain. The objective is to enable the Arburg customers to manufacture their plastic products, whether one-off parts or high-volume production, in optimal quality and at minimum unit costs – e.g. for the automotive and packaging industries, communication and entertainment electronics, medical technology, or the white goods sector.

An international sales and service network guarantees first-class, local customer support. Arburg is represented by its own organisations at 32 locations in 24 countries and by trading partners in more than 50 countries. The machines are produced exclusively at the parent factory in Lossburg, Germany. From a total of around 2,400 employees, around 2,000 work in Germany. About 400 further employees work in Arburg’s organisations around the world. In 2012, Arburg became one of the first companies to gain triple certification: to ISO 9001 (Quality), ISO 14001 (Environment) and ISO 50001 (Energy).

Further information about Arburg can be found at