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Press makers unveil precision units

Issue: February 2018

The latest injection molding machines presented at Tokyo’s International Plastic Fair (IPF) in October touted all-electric operation for precision, new designs for versatility, or faster speeds for packaging applications.


Sodick Co. Ltd., Yokohama, Japan, introduced its updated MS series of all-electric, two-stage screw/plunger injection molding machines.

Sodick’s MS50 all-electric injection molding machine boasts 55 tons of clamping force.

The MS line, now part of the company’s all-electric series as denoted by an “eV” decal, replaces the previous MS series of machines, which featured a hybrid drive system, said Kentaro Isozumi, with Sodick’s sales division in Japan. The updated model line consumes 30 percent less energy than the earlier version, Isozumi said.

Sodick offers three models: the MS50 with 55 tons of clamping force, the 110-ton MS100 and the 220-ton MS200. The company updated the toggle clamp and platen design for improved performance. It has enhanced the capability of the controller with its Sodick Scientific Molding software program for process monitoring, development and validation. The controller has IoT connectivity.

At IPF, Sodick’s MS50 produced a container with a living hinge from PP in a 22-second cycle. An MS200 unit molded a 28-gram cup from PP in a 4-second cycle. Sodick is represented by Plustech Inc., Schaumburg, Ill., in North America.


U&M Plastic Solutions Co. Ltd., Tokyo, launched an all-electric toggle machine series at IPF. The company is a new machinery division formed by Ube Machinery Corp., Ube, Japan, following its purchase last year of the injection molding machine division of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Plastic Technology Co. Ltd.

Ube established U&M Plastic Solutions Co. Ltd. to sell both the Ube Machinery and U-MHI Platech brands of injection molding machines.

U-MHI Platech introduced its new HH line, which marks the first commercial product following the acquisition of the MHI division, according to Noriaki Nii, manager of U&M’s East Japan Business Group.

The HH line is based on Mitsubishi’s ME-III series that it replaces, but it also incorporates several technologies from Ube, Nii said.

The HH series is available in five models, with clamping forces from 390 tons to 950 tons. Features include direct-drive motors for injection movements. This direct-drive approach was picked up from Mitsubishi’s machine design, where the ball screws that drive the motions of the machine are linked directly to the motor rather than to a belt-drive system.

The HH line features the new Mac-IX controller from Mitsubishi, which is an update of its Mac-VIII controller. The new controller has a larger (15.6-inch) color touch screen and is IoT-ready with software protocols and ports added for connectivity to a wider array of equipment. Ube collaborated with Fanuc Corp., Oshino-Mura, Japan, to optimize Fanuc’s LINKi IoT program for the HH line.

The new machinery line can run special processes, such as Ube’s Dieprest core-back foaming process, Nii said.


Fanuc introduced the newest and largest model in its Roboshot Alpha-S-iA line of all-electric toggle machines. The Roboshot Alpha S450iA delivers 495 tons of clamping force, greater than the 330 tons provided with the Alpha S300iA model, said Hiroshi Watanabe, assistant manager of the Roboshot sales department. The Roboshot line is offered in the U.S. through Milacron LLC.

Fanuc’s Roboshot Alpha S450iA delivers 495 tons of clamping force.

The new model is available with a choice of two injection unit sizes. Features that are standard for the line include Fanuc-designed servomotors driving each axis of movement. Low-friction linear guides ensure smooth injection and metering motion of the injection unit.

The new injection unit delivers a maximum pressure from 19,580 psi to 32,633 psi depending on the size, and a maximum injection speed of 240mm per second. The platens measure 1,300mm by 1,300mm and have a clamping stroke of 900mm.

The tie-bar space measures 920mm by 920mm.

The machine line also incorporates Fanuc’s 310iS CNC control for precise programming, monitoring and operational control. Users can view performance, energy consumption and energy regeneration of the servomotors and amplifiers, and have the option to monitor the power consumption of auxiliary equipment. The control also includes Fanuc’s AI mold protection and the latest updates to the company’s Roboshot Linki connectivity software.

Later this year, Fanuc plans to launch a larger injection unit for Alpha S450iA that would cover up to 100mm diameter screw size.


Sumitomo (SHI) Demag introduced a larger model in its SE-HSZ-Pack line of high-speed packaging machines for super-thin-wall container molding. Its new SE350HSZ-Pack eclipses the SE280HSZ-Pack as the largest in the line, said Tatsuya Nagase, with Sumitomo’s Tokyo-based marketing group.

A high-speed packaging machine for super-thin-wall container molding, Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s new
SE350HSZ-Pack is the largest in the SE-HSZ-Pack line.

Sumitomo said the model delivers improved performance through high-response injection that is coupled with high plasticizing capacity. The SE350HSZ-Pack incorporates Sumitomo’s direct-drive motors for both injection and clamping. The low-inertia/high-torque design of the compact direct-drive motors allows them to draw power only when it is needed, Sumitomo said.

The injection unit provides injection speeds of 550mm to 650mm per second, depending on the type of injection unit. The injection unit has a response time of 25 milliseconds. It delivers injection pressures up to 39,740 psi and provides 6 tons of nozzle touch force.

Other features include a five-point double toggle and 385 tons of clamping force. The platens measure 1,070mm by 1,020mm. The mold opening/closing stroke is 700mm, and the unit provides mold opening and closing speeds up to 1,300mm per second.

The press also incorporates Sumitomo’s PC-based Z control, which delivers low-pressure and precise filling. It also limits the clamping force to the minimum required for the specific application. This produces high-quality parts while reducing wear on the mold.

At IPF, the SE350HSZ-Pack produced 26-gram drink cups from PP in an eight-cavity mold in 4.5 seconds.

Mikell Knights, senior staff reporter


For more information

Milacron LLC,
Batavia, Ohio, 513-536-2000, www.milacron.com

Plustech Inc.,
Schaumburg, Ill., 847-490-8130, www.plustech-inc.com

Sumitomo (SHI) Demag,
Strongsville, Ohio, 440-876-8960, www.sumitomo-shi-demag.us

UBE Machinery Inc.,
Ann Arbor, Mich., 734-741-7000, www.ubemachinery.com