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Integrated RA motion solutions for tyre building machines

Customer Profile
A privately held OEM (hereafter refered as "TG"), established in 1994, provides mixers and tire building machines for the tire manufacturing industry,and   currently enjoys a 20-25% market share for tire building machines in the People’s Republic of China.

 

Solution
· New integrated motion control platform

- Performs all sequential, drive and motion control functions with just one control and software package

- Integrates with plant level architecture; optional Ethernet module allows integration to ERP level

· SERCOS interface
- Provides seamless integration between controller and drives


Results
· Decreased programming time
- Cut by 50%, from two months to one month

· Reduced wiring time
- Decreased by 75%, from four weeks to one week

· Cut installation time
- Shortened time for startup from 30 days to 10-15 days

· Enhanced flexibility
- Simplifies future expansion of integration to ERP level

 

Challenge
Tires are manufactured in three basic stages. In the first stage, the tire components are created. Different types of rubber are mixed with a variety of oils,pigments and other additives to produce the various compounds needed to create rubber-based parts, such as innerliners,sidewalls and treads. And other components, such as steel belts, are also manufactured. Next, the tires are assembled within the tire building machine. In the final stage, heat is used to vulcanize the assembled tires, thereby bonding the components together and curing the rubber.To help the end user gain a competitive edge in the heavy truck tire market, TG set their sights on creating a costeffective,reliable tire building machine for all-steel reinforced truck tires.

 

Since its inception, TG had utilized traditional motion control methods to integrate their tire building machines. The typical tire building machine contains multiple servo axes, the majority of which must be synchronized with the coordinated motion of the production cycle.While a PLC was used for sequential control, up to 18 discrete wires per axis were needed just to establish the interface between the controller and the drive.Additional third party motion control modules and programming packages — plus complicated wiring and cables — were used to establish the coordinated motion control.

 

Using the traditional motion control method, TG typically spent four weeks wiring, inspecting and testing their tire building machines and another two months programming them.Field assembly and commissioning entailed an additional 20-30 days. With market demand for all-steel truck tires at its peak, TG’s customers required the new tire building machines to be up and running as quickly as possible. Tsingtao Gaoxiao needed a faster, better way to integrate motion control in order to speed the production and installation of their tire building machines and meet their customers’requirements.


Solutions
For years, TG had relied on Rockwell Automation for integrated control solutions for a wide range of applications. Now, they approached their long- time partner for a motion control solution that would simplify the integration of their new tire building machine, while providing the extremely accurate product positioning required for this application.

 

Rockwell Automation recommended a completely integrated solution based on Allen-Bradley ControlLogix controllers,Allen-Bradley Kinetix 6000 multi-axis servo drives and Allen-Bradley Ultra3000 digital servo drives, running on RSLogix 5000 programming software from Rockwell Software and DeviceNet.

 

While traditional motion control systems require multiple controllers and programming packages, the Kinetix integrated motion solution performs all sequential, drive and motion control functions with just one control and software package. Motion control functions are embedded in both the ControlLogix controller and the RSLogix 5000 programming software, and a SERCOS.

 

The SERCOS interface utilizes a single fiber optic ring as the sole interface between the controller and the drive —eliminating up to 18 discrete wires per axis. Additional wiring is eliminated,thanks to the Power Rail, Kinetix’s unique mounting and connecting system, which replaces power wiring, logic wiring and complex cables.

 

Results
With the Kinetix integrated motion solutions in place, TG greatly accelerated the delivery of the machines to their customers — and reduced costs. Thanks to the SERCOS interface and Power Rail, the OEM has decreased wiring time by 75% — from four weeks to one week. In addition, since just one programming package, RSLogix 5000 is used for sequential, drive and motion control, TG has also cut their programming time by 50% — from two months to one month. And most importantly, the OEM has substantially reduced its installation time.

 

Using the traditional motion control system, TG required up to 30 days to assemble and commission its tire building machines at its end users’facilities. With the new fully integrated solution, the OEM can now have their machines up and running within 10-15 days.

 

In the near future, TG plans to extend the integration of this plant floor solution to their customers’ERP systems by adding an Ethernet module to the ControlLogix controller, thereby establishing a true “shop floor to top floor” enterprise solution for the tire manufacturing industry in China.

 

The architecture below depicts Rockwell Automation’s concept of an Integrated Architecture. The area outlined with a brown dash line represents the present automation level under discussion in this document. The remaining portion illustrates a host of solutions that Rockwell Automation can provide today to integrate the plant floor to the enterprise and beyond.

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