Lower Energy Costs, Higher Temperatures, More Flexibility Characterize New Temperature Control Units from Conair
February 10, 2016
Processors can save up to $740/year in pumping energy costs with these new, super-efficient temperature control units (TCUs) from Conair Group. In addition, with extra pressure, more flow and higher maximum temperatures, it may be possible to use a smaller unit in many applications. The Conair TCUs, which were shown for the first time at NPE 2015, have completed a successful beta-test phase and now all models are available to customers. The units are being featured at the Plastec West/MD&M West tradeshow February 9 – 11 in Anaheim, CA. Conair is exhibiting in two booths: 2346 and 2150.
Conair engineers designed the new pump so that the amount of fluid delivered with each revolution of the impeller is significantly increased. This results in greater pump efficiency as defined by the volume and/or the pressure of water delivered per unit of energy.
“We did extensive testing of the performance of the new design versus our previous-generation pump,” explains Tim Miller, Product Manager – Heat Transfer, Conair. “Averaging the results in all the different TCU sizes, we determined that users could save $740/year in energy costs. We found similar results when we compared the Conair TCUs against competitive products.”
The new units also have a higher maximum water temperature then before. With the high-temperature option, they can achieve 300°F (149°C) leaving water temperature, allowing molders to achieve higher mold temperatures without needing to use oil as the heat-transfer medium. Miller says that water is a better heat conductor than oil and is safer to use. The new TCUs offer a maximum heater size of 48 kW, which is twice the heating capacity previously available in a standard-sized cabinet.
All the new TCUs have the same basic mechanical design and features but molders can choose between Value, Standard and Premium control platforms. The Value unit comes preconfigured with just two pump sizes and no options in order to keep prices low. The Standard and Premium configurations are available in more pump sizes and offer a higher level of customization. The Premium offering allows the highest level of customization, although both Premium and Standard platforms offer more functionality than the previous generation of TCUs. For instance, both the Standard and Premium models are available with optional remote communication capability that allows users to change settings and diagnose problems using standard communication formats like Modbus and Ethernet/IP.
Both standard and premium configurations are capable of operating optional solid state relay (SSR) heater controls and can be equipped with optional modulating flow-control valves replacing standard conventional solenoid valves. The “floating” valve is separately driven open and closed so it can open or close completely or partially, depending on process requirements.
The premium TCU configuration gives users additional flexibility, including a choice of control sensor location. The controls can operate based on supply temperature readings, return temperature readings or an average of the two. In models equipped for closed-circuit cooling (in which the process water and cooling water are completely isolated) heat-exchanger capacity has been increased dramatically and two sizes are available: a standard-capacity heat exchanger with 5X the surface area than previous Conair TCUs and a high-capacity version with 10X the heat exchanger surface area.
Other options available in the premium configuration include:
- Remote mountable HMI (may be relocated near the molding machine controls)
- Flow meters
- Phase protection
- Improved diagnostics
MedLine® Temperature Controls
The new temperature-control units are also available as part of Conair’s MedLine® family of clean-room-ready auxiliaries. They include features that facilitate clean operation, including wipe-down control panels, white powder coating and urethane casters. In addition, the MedLine TCUs are subjected to additional calibration steps, labeled and certified for one year before they leave the factory. They come with a quality and regulatory compliance package aligned with ISO and FDA requirements. Compliant documentation significantly reduces the paperwork processors typically need to generate in order to validate their cleanroom facilities and processes.
The Conair Group (www.conairgroup.com) is a leading global 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. Conair is also an international company, with long-standing operations in Europe, Asia and Latin America. 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.