Precia-Molen provides an I400 based formulation system for ATEX area

Precia-Molen was recently approached by a major international manufacturer of conformance coatings to provide a solution that would satisfy four key criteria within the production process. The client supplies coatings for various applications within the Aerospace and Defence, Automotive, Appliance Controls, Industrial Controls and Chemical Industries. These involve working in harsh environments which include high temperatures, salt spray, humidity, condensation, water immersion, noxious/corrosive gases, solvent splash, spill and immersion.

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The task:

With a desire to meet increasing sales projections the client required a completely new state-of-the-art production facility (classified as hazardous according to the ATEX directive) with eight mixing stations able to operate simultaneously. With product quality and traceability critical in order to ensure the reliability of electronic components in highly demanding environments the system reports must satisfy military auditors.

A successful solution:

After consultation a decision was made to supply a 1400 D-MS Ex 2-21 with an SDU for the proposed simple dosing system. However, after further discussion it was clear that the client required much more functionality which prompted Precia-Molen to include a central formulation system utilising the GeneSYS™ MRM (Manufacturing Recipe Model) and to retain the I400 D-S EX 2-21 as a weighing terminal with HMI functions. As dosing was to be manually controlled the system would prompt the operator to make an addition and then monitor and record the actual weight added. Precia-Molen was also given a further task of providing a solution that would also prompt operators to add the necessary ingredients and to record the results including raw material lot numbers for archiving.

Key benefits:

The new system has provided numerous key benefits, including:

  • High accuracy dispensing of bulk ingredients. Supervisor alarm given for over dispense.
  • Operator errors minimised due to structured user dialogue and clear prompts
  • Recipes maintained under change-control in line with Good Automated Manufacturing Practice
  • Full audit trail
  • Record with each ingredient addition logged by weight
  • Raw material batch numbers (lot number) recorded
  • Operator identified for each batch

A successful solution:

The installation included three system key components:

  • Stainless steel compact LoadMount with integral jacking for convenient installation and stainless steel ATEX certified load cells.
  • I400 D-MS EX 2-21 at each station to operate as HMI
  • Central formulation system with GeneSYS™ Manufacturing Recipe Module

Since installation and commissioning the new system has proved to be a total success and is operating fully to specification. All the operators and supervisors are very happy with the ease of use and management is receiving the required production data it needs for quality control.

Overall the control system has been acknowledged as delivering excellent performance at a far lower cost than a similar plants.