What is a Thermolator®?
“Thermolator” refers to a Thermolator® temperature control unit (TCU). Thermolator is the brand name for the first line of TCUs to be introduced to plastics processors back in the 1950s, a brand name that the Conair Group acquired in 1977. Through the years, Thermolator TCUs have been so reliable and have become so ubiquitous that in the plastics industry that many processors use the brand name, “Thermolator,” and the generic name, TCU, to mean the same thing.
What do Thermolator® temperature control units do?
A temperature control unit, or TCU, is a device that continually circulates fluid (typically water) to maintain a specified process temperature in a mold, tool, cooling tank, or cooling circuit used in injection molding or extrusion processes. The temperature of the circulating fluid is regulated by thermostatic controls in the TCU as the fluid is pumped through channels surrounding the tool cavity and other parts of the cooling circuit. As needed, the TCU raises the temperature of the fluid using a heating element, or cools it by opening a drain solenoid valve to eliminate warmer water and replace it with cooler water from a chiller or another source.
Maintaining temperature control not only requires accurate regulation of coolant temperatures, but also a turbulent flow of coolant. Turbulent flow, generated by a properly sized coolant pump, is essential to maximizing heat transfer and producing quality components with expected mechanical properties. If pump sizing is inadequate to deliver required coolant flow, turbulence, and heat transfer, parts may warp or distort and productivity will suffer.
Thus, Thermolator TCUs from Conair don’t just heat or cool fluids, but truly regulate the temperature of processes to ensure the highest possible product quality and the highest possible production rates.