At Formnext 2021 in Frankfurt, Germany, Arburg will be presenting a high-temperature Freeformer that can turn medically approved PEEK granulate into skull implants. Each part has an individual QR code assigned to it, which can be used to log into the “arburgXworld” customer portal and call up and document all relevant data for the respective build job in the “ProcessLog” app. Arburg now also offers a Remote Service (ARS) feature for all Freeformers so that problems can be solved quickly and cost-effectively via online support.
“Arburg not only has decades of know-how in plastics processing and mechanical engineering, but also covers the entire additive manufacturing process chain,” says Lukas Pawelczyk, Head of Freeformer Sales at Arburg. “This includes 100 per cent traceability and documentation of every single build job and online support for our Freeformers.”
“ProcessLog” delivers process reliability
“ProcessLog,” a premium app developed specifically for the Freeformer and part of the “arburgXworld” customer portal, allows a wide range of process and build job data for parts produced using Arburg Plastic Freeforming (APF) to be clearly displayed in graphic form and printed out as a PDF file, such as for documentation purposes. To demonstrate this at the trade fair, each manufactured part will be given a label with a QR code. This involves transferring the build job from the Freeformer controller to a PC via a removable disk. The label printed by the PC already contains information about the Freeformer machine, the materials used, the start and end of the job, the build time, and the material and build temperature.
Using the QR code, the recorded process data can also be viewed in “ProcessLog” over the entire build time with detailed information on melt pressure, screw position, drop frequency, and discharge rate. This successful and seamless monitoring, part-specific tracing, and documentation of process data are of particular interest for the medical technology, automotive, and aerospace industries.
“arburgXworld” customer portal offers added value
Additional transparency is also provided by the free “MachineCenter” customer portal app, which clearly displays all the customer’s freeformers. Documents on material profiles, software packages, and sample parts, for example, can be retrieved for each machine, together with material datasheets. Operating and maintenance instructions are also provided, alongside floor plans.
In the “Shop,” consumables such as nozzle tips and platforms can be ordered quickly and easily. In addition, the graphic spare parts catalog contains exploded views of all Freeformer assemblies with graphic links to the material number of the required individual part.
Freeformer cross-linked via IIoT gateway
All new freeformers are equipped with an IIoT gateway and basic connectivity to enable standardized cross-linking with the customer portal or Arburg Remote Service function. Arburg now also offers a Remote Service (ARS) for its Freeformers, which involves hotline staff connecting directly to the machine’s control system via a protected and encrypted data connection in consultation with the customer. In addition, the machine operator actively enables VPN access via a software switch. This secure online support enables customers to make quick and easy use of Arburg’s extensive expertise to analyze and optimize their processes.
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