The FLX material-handling control system from Conair - developed for plastics processors who want a simple, entry-level material-handling system that can grow with them - is now available in a new larger configuration to serve up to 64 loaders and 20 vacuum conveying pumps. This top-end capacity is double that of the original FLX system.
Designed to be affordable and easy to install and expand, a processor could start with an FLX system to manage just 8 loaders and 2 pumps (one primary pump and one back-up pump), and then increase capacity and capabilities in manageable increments when necessary, simply by adding input and output cards. The system can include such high-level functions as multi-source/multi-destination loading, purge, ratio loading, ratio loading with purge, reverse conveying for regrind recovery, loader fill sensing, output sharing between FLX control panels, Ethernet communication and much more.
The PLC-based system has a 5.6-inch color touch screen operator interface on the central control box. The graphical display is easy to read, easy to use and requires minimal, if any, operator training. Color-coded icons let operators know the status of connected equipment at a glance. Any interruptions to optimum processing are clearly signaled for fast resolution with no nuisance alarms. Alarms can be programmed as active (disabling the device being alarmed) or passive, allowing operation to continue until maintenance staff can identify the problem. Built-in help screens simplify troubleshooting.
To give production personnel convenient access to set-up and data screens, up to six remote human-machine interface units (HMIs) can be connected to the system via Ethernet link. A built-in webserver allows any personal computer on the same network to display the system status as a web page.
The FLX is affordable and easy to install and expand, and even a small-scale system can have many advanced capabilities. For instance, loader demands for material are handled on a first in/first out (FIFO) basis. Most other controls simply poll every loader sequentially, which means some loaders may actually run out of material before they can be filled. With the FLX control, however, demands are filled in the order received. Any loaders on any pump can even be given priority status, becoming the next receiver filled regardless of what other demands may exist in the system.
When configured for ratio loading, the control can be programmed to load either virgin or regrind first. Layering sequences can be calculated automatically or manually.
About The Conair Group
The Conair Group is the supplier of auxiliary equipment for plastics processors, including 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. Over 450 individual products solve problems, save energy, cut waste and are easy to use. With long-standing operations in Europe, Asia and South America, Conair is also an international company. More than 300 employees worldwide bring together 50 years of manufacturing experience and youthful creativity to break down barriers to innovation and harness new technology to give customers meaningful, bottom line benefits. The industry's most complete product line, top-flight engineering and unbeatable service, all combine to give processors the confidence they need to succeed in today's competitive global marketplace.
Source: The Conair Group