Elematic Oyj rode into the bauma 2019 trade fair, Munich, with a fifth generation plank and slab extruder sporting new compaction control, bouncing prevention and mix recycling mechanisms. The Extruder E9 sets what company engineers dub a new benchmark for high-speed casting at low operating costs. Equipped with an advanced touch screen user interface and added intelligence features, the machine is geared to offer a new level of user experience and the potential for significant material savings measured against predecessor models.
|The fifth generation E9 Extruder was the centerpiece of the Elematic exhibit at the 2019 bauma trade fair. New technology and components equip the machine to deliver advanced plank and slab quality, plus mix optimization and recycling. The retooled E9 rounds out an Elematic extruder family, joining the S5 and P7 models.|
The E9 plays to a new metric in extruded plank and slabs: Speed. In today’s construction market, Elematic notes, fast casting is desired because of tight project scheduling demands. With reportedly the industry’s highest casting speed—up to 2.7 meters per minute, 30 percent to 70 percent faster than prior models—the new machine responds to market requirements for fast plank or slab turnaround.
“The speed translates into eight to 10 cast beds in the same amount of time that previously produced only six cast beds. This means as many as 18 cast beds per day, which brings high return on investment and profitable business for the precast producer,” says Elematic Product Director, Floor Technologies Jani Eilola.
The stepped-up pace is achieved with a new extruding screw design, independent screw drives and optimized casting parameters. Similar to its predecessors, the new E9 is based on shear compaction technology. Efficient compaction allows for minimum cement content in slabs, owing to the high concrete density and exponential effect on compressive strength development.
Independent screw driving increases casting speed and product range versatility for the Extruder E9, which debuts after years of growing demand for casting different products fast with one machine, and is capable of fabricating solid, wing or stadium slabs, plus piles and poles.
“A common example is casting narrow or split slabs. With the new Extruder, it is possible to choose from six different widths on a basic 1.2-meter-wide bed,” Eilola explains. “It brings considerable savings when narrow filler slabs can be cast instead of sawing them to correct measurements.”
The E9 also features a second-generation automatic compaction control system with leveling beam resistance as a new input parameter. Together with the independent casting screws, it guarantees a balanced casting process as concrete is fed more evenly throughout the whole plank or slab cross section. Compared to predecessor models, the casting process is monitored and controlled better, leading to further increases in finished product quality. The machine’s intelligent bouncing prevention system stops pressure fluctuation during compaction from imparting waves on the product surface.
The new machine’s slow casting mode reduces the need to stop production when concrete supply to the hopper is restricted, in turn promoting plank or slab quality and uniformity. An optional recycling system is geared to lowering net concrete mix consumption and production costs. Once excess concrete is transported back to the machine, the system slowly mixes it with fresh material to ensure that quality remains at target level.
The Extruder E9 features a modern and intuitive 15.6-in. touch screen interface. Users can zoom, drag and drop items in a manner similar to other smart devices. The interface is designed to meet everyday functions in precast concrete plants—changing casting modes directly on the machine, among them.
Alongside the Extruder E9, Elematic has introduced the Modifier E9-1200m for digging and placing cuttings, recessions and other openings on green plank or slabs. The machine offers accurate, fast and flexible marking and digging of cutting lines and openings, while significantly reducing mix consumption in precast production.
The Modifier E9 is designed for automatic operation, but can also run in semi-automatic and manual modes. It enables efficient concrete recycling through a water-free digging process, whereby mix removed from openings can be returned to the Extruder E9. The recycling mechanisms are equipped with time limit functions to prevent the feeding of mixes that have exceeded preset working or quality thresholds.
The Modifier E9 saves production time by eliminating the need for manual marking of cutting lines or making openings for lifting loop installations and through holes. It uses wireless technology to transfer bed plans to the Elematic FloorMES machine control system, and can take the plans directly from Building Information Modeling systems. Machine location detail is acquired from laser positioning, which uses a mirror at the end of the bed to measure distance. Reducing the need for manual work improves production efficiency, eliminates mistakes and improves shop floor safety.
The Modifier E9 is fitted with a safety buffer on both ends, including light sensors to protect the area in the middle of buffers, plus ultrasonic sensors, which add to safety but also make it possible to pause the operation when getting close to the extruder. — Elematic Inc., Brookfield, Wis., 262/798-9777; Elematic Oyj, Finland, www.elematic.com
WALL MANUFACTURING EXECUTION
|WallMES is the newest manufacturing execution system within the Elematic Plant Control program.|
Beyond the Extruder E9 and Modifier E9, Elematic chose the bauma backdrop to debut the latest addition to its precast Plant Control series. A manufacturing execution system to optimize precast wall panel casting, WallMES covers automatic production planning, work follow-up and quality control operations, and can receive design information directly from Building Information Modeling platforms.
The new system provides plant operators table-specific, real-time production progress data with comparison to actual versus estimated work times; wait times; production efficiency figures versus work hour estimates; advanced quality control data points; plus, key performance indicator details with automatic dashboard and customizable report generation. The system stores all production history data automatically. WallMES planning functions help balance work schedules and available resources per phase or shift to realize smooth and continuous daily work flow. The system also facilitates focused quality improvement by measuring test results and any corrective actions.
Elematic’s design philosophy behind WallEMS and companion Plant Control series devices focuses on giving precast producers freedom to choose a path and pace of digitizing their operations. Independent modules make it easy to proceed step by step, module by module, without major initial investment. Like Plant Control companions, WallMES features a visual interface with a drag and drop function plus clear icons and buttons that guide users through different operations.