An automotive interior without buttons and switches

The vision of a vehicle interior without buttons and switches is becoming increasingly real.  Visitors to NPE 2012, being held at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL, can stop by the ENGEL booth and sit in the driver’s seat of the future to experience the reality of cutting-edge automotive control functions.  The NPE 2012 exhibit halls will be open to guests April 2-5, 2012.  ENGEL North America will be located at Booth #943 in the West Hall of the convention center.

Activating control functions through the center console of the simulation cell is as simple as lightly touching one of the functional elements of the completely enclosed surface.  Thanks to ENGEL clearmelt technology and the integration of a capacitive foil using in-mold labeling, vehicle controls will be just as elegant as smartphone controls in the future.

"This trend not only gives automotive interior designers a new level of freedom, it also reduces the cost of producing functional elements," stresses Mark Sankovitch, President of ENGEL North America. "We are already talking to various OEMs and automotive companies. In four to five years, the first vehicles will be equipped with this sensitive surface technology," adds Franz Füreder, head of ENGEL Automotive at ENGEL Headquarters in Schwertberg, Austria.
ENGEL is presenting this exhibit in cooperation with various system partners. Magna Exterior & Interior Systems from Munich, Germany is supporting the processing technology side of the project.

ENGEL duo range expanded

At NPE, an ENGEL duo 350 injection molding machine will be producing the piano black center consoles. This is the first showing of this new machine size in North America, which brings the power of the duo large-scale machines – maximum power on a small footprint – to the lower clamping force range.

Using spin-stack technology, the thermoplastic center console top carrier made of ABS-PC is injected while the pre-molded part created in the previous cycle is overmolded with polyurethane in the second half of the mold. This process is based on the ENGEL combi M method but with a polyurethane system connected to the mold, instead of a second injection unit. The capacitive foil is insert-placed into the mold before injecting the first component. ENGEL viper 20 and ENGEL viper 40 linear robots take care of component and part handling.
In the ENGEL clearmelt process, the layer of PUR fulfills multiple functions at the same time. The primary task is that of protecting the part's class A surface against chemical and mechanical exposure. The coating's excellent degree of glossiness and the 3-D effect that it creates provides added value to the part's appearance.

Servohydraulics save costs

This exhibit not only has a high level of technology but it is also extremely energy efficient in its operation. The ENGEL duo machine is equipped with the servohydraulic ENGEL ecodrive which reduces energy loss to such an extent that hydraulic machines can achieve consumption values that can compete with fully electric machines. The key to this impressive level of efficiency lies in reducing loss of energy through the full molding cycle. While the machine is idle during cooling phases, for example, no energy is consumed. Additionally, ecodrive reduces – and in some cases even eliminates -- the requirement for oil cooling. With most hydraulic machines, the supplied electrical energy not used for various machine movements in the form of kinetic energy is usually converted into heat, and this heat energy is supplied to the hydraulic oil. Therefore, a key indicator of energy efficiency in hydraulic machines is the oil temperature.

Complimentary seminar during NPE

ENGEL is offering a complimentary seminar on dolphin and clearmelt technologies during the NPE show.  On Wednesday, April 4th there will be a morning and an afternoon presentation with experts from ENGEL and partner companies describing the latest in automotive molding technologies and materials.  To register, contact ENGEL at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

ENGEL in Florida with a total of seven manufacturing cells

ENGEL will prove its great system-solution competence at the NPE 2012 with a total of seven highly-integrated and automated manufacturing cells, demonstrating a wide range of applications. Apart from the automotive industry, ENGEL will have exhibits that focus on the Packaging, Medical, and Technical Molding, industries. “At ENGEL it’s not just about equipment,” says Mark Sankovitch. “It’s about helping our customers bring their ideas to life – discovering new approaches, engineering innovations, developing new process technologies. By doing so, it is possible to achieve long-term cost advantages and to increase competitiveness.”

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