At ChinaPlas 2023
Conair’s new Moisture Minder®, an in-line sensor that reads the moisture content of moving resin to enable real-time identification and notification of out-of-spec moisture levels, will headline a series of energy— and material-saving innovations— in Booth 13D45 at ChinaPlas 2023, April 17-20 at the Shenzen World Exhibition and Conference Center in Shenzen, Guangdong, PR China.
Valuable to plastics processors involved in molding, extrusion, packaging, and bottling, the new Moisture Minder sensor detects residual moisture levels as low as 10 ppm in a range of polymers at throughput rates of 20 to 5000 lb./hr. Installed at the outlet of a drying hopper, it measures the moisture content continually, confirming that material is properly dried or issuing real-time alarms if material moisture levels drift outside user-prescribed limits.
“Processors who manufacture high-quality products know that it is essential to maintain process stability at all times. The Conair Moisture Minder offers them a way to make a final check on the moisture levels of materials before they enter processing equipment, where excess moisture could cause process instability and result in scrap,” explains Sam Rajkovich, vice president, sales and marketing for Conair. He adds that the device also stores all readings for historical trending, “so that managers can recognize if process conditions begin to shift and respond by making dryer-control changes to avoid compromising the entire volume of material inside the drying hopper. These historical records can also be used to validate process consistency and confirm that all products were manufactured under acceptable conditions.”
New Common Control architecture
Three other products on display feature Conair’s new “common” control architecture, which uses common colors, buttons, and interactions to deliver a uniform user experience, making it easier for processors to onboard and train operators on a variety of auxiliary equipment types:
- The D200 Carousel Plus™ central dryer, where the common control is accessed through a 7-inch Premium color touchscreen HMI. With the recent introduction of the DC-B common control across all dryers with throughputs above 15 lb./hr., Conair’s multi-year effort to offer the common control across all computer-controlled auxiliary equipment is nearly complete, spanning TrueBlend™ blenders, SmartFLX conveying controls, premium Thermolator temperature control units, and all Carousel Plus™ dX Series mobile and D Series central drying systems. The control, which is available in multiple languages, was specifically designed by Conair to require a minimum of training for operators, so that they can more easily master the operation of blenders, dryers, conveying systems, temperature control units, and other auxiliary equipment.
- The SmartFLX conveying control, which drives a live demonstration of Conair’s revolutionary, material-saving Wave Conveying System. Once again accessed through a 10-inch touchscreen HMI, the advanced SmartFLX conveying control drives resin through a continuous circuit. Resin flows through an FL15 Filterless receiver, which filters out debris and fines using a counter-rotating venturi instead of a conventional filter, a mobile surge bin, Conair’s patented Wave Conveying valve, and a vacuum pump. Conair developed the Wave Conveying concept to overcome the problems of high-speed, dilute-phase conveying systems, which transport resins at speeds fast enough to cause damage due to friction/rubbing of soft resins or impact/shattering of hard resins. Such damage results in resin waste in the form of angel hair and fines, excessive wear to conveying system components, and maintenance problems with clogged filters, overheated pumps, or poor conveying performance. Instead of moving low resin volumes at extremely high speeds, Wave Conveying moves higher resin volumes at lower speeds in the form of dense material “pulses” (Wave Pulse phase) or gentle, rolling material “streams” (Wave Stream phase). Alternatively, the system also allows dilute-phase conveying, but at carefully controlled speeds.
- Also equipped with the common control architecture, the SB-5 is the 7-inch color touchscreen control for the TrueBlend 250 material blender. Able to manage up to 12 ingredients, dispensed from any of 12 material bins, TrueBlend blenders sustain best-in-industry dosing accuracy of 0.025% for the total batch dispensed, thanks to Conair’s unique “feed forward” dosing algorithm. Instead of making a single dispense of each ingredient and adjusting for discrepancies in subsequent batches, the SB-5 control uses incremental dispenses in each batch, continuously weighing the material and adding a little bit more until the target weight is reached. This approach ensures that all ingredients are accurate to 0.025% of the batch recipe. The TrueFeed blender is fed by two Access Series receivers, with one bin mounting the larger Access AR-5 and another the more compact Access AR-2, both of which feature a unique angled canister design with hinged lid that affords easy access to the unit’s drop-in disk filter, without removing the lid. The blender itself is mounted on a TBBS mobile blending stand which incorporates a convenient surge bin for resin storage.
Several other products round out Conair’s presentation: Small ingredient bins top TrueFeed feeders in a dual configuration, with each feeder simulating the precise dispensing of an additive into a single stream of virgin material, supplied by a central bin, as it enters the feedthroat of a processing machine. Nearby is Conair’s C50 DeDuster, a patented in-line separator that removes dust, angel hair and streamers from material to prevent problems with black spots, gels, or weak spots in parts. Finally, there is a Duraload DL12 receiver, mounted atop a TrueRate intelligent weigh scale. When the TrueRate scale is positioned between a loader or receiver and a material vessel, it precisely computes the weight of each material load, as well as the total throughput of each material type, making it easy to accurately track inventories and usage levels for a wide variety of resins.
The Conair Group (www.conairgroup.com) offers innovative auxiliary equipment solutions to plastics processors around the world. With 32 degreed engineers, including 16 senior team members with an average of over 23 years of experience, Conair brings unparalleled technical expertise and support to its customers, guaranteeing its products will deliver maximum productive uptime. Twenty parts and service team members respond to tens of thousands of calls each year, answering in an average of about 15 seconds. Over 450 individual products include resin drying systems, blenders, feeders and material-conveying systems, temperature-control equipment, and granulators. Extrusion solutions include line-control systems, film, and sheet scrap-reclaim systems, and downstream equipment for pipe and profile extrusion. Conair also has specialized expertise in every major end market – such as packaging, medical, transportation, building and construction, and many others – and strives to ensure plastics processors succeed in today’s competitive global marketplace.
The new Moisture Minder® from Conair offers an in-line solution for real-time moisture analysis. It accurately detects residual moisture in a broad ranges of materials at rates of 20-5000 lbs./hr.