Precision and Adaptability in One

Aug. 26, 2010
Kollmorgen Automation Suite maximizes productivity by making performance more dynamic, even for fast changeovers

Thanks to the Kollmorgen servomotors and precision gear boxes, the new graphic printing machine design eliminates the need to change the cylinders and gearwheels, for higher up-time and greater productivity.

For advanced printing operations, a jumbo roll collator designed by Jakob Graphic Services GmbH can automatically collate, glue, label, fold and cut forms, mailers with cut inserts, brochures with or without a finish, calendars, and similar printed matter. These machines perform with precision during very dynamic processes while quickly adapting to new tasks, with an extremely simple and fast changeover system. In fact, servo cutter format adjustments, and even extensive changes, can be carried out in just seconds. At the heart of this machine is Kollmorgen Automation Suite (KAS). In addition to powerful Kollmorgen servo technology, the KAS software package is vital for speeding development and commissioning with simplified programming interface and real-time system simulation.

Among the key advances of the new Kollmorgen Automation Suite (KAS) are a more compact cabinet with an all-in-one IPC module; total application development time of one week; and machine througput of 200 m/min (+30%, though actual speed may vary.)

Most operations using the Jakob roll collator produce a range of printed paper products, and changeover and set-up times significantly reduce machine efficiency. With that in mind, Jakob Graphic Services set out to develop a machine that provided high-level functionality with sound construction — but also delivered simplified operation with rapid machine retooling. They determined that cutting-edge servo technology would deliver the performance and functionality needed to make this a groundbreaking automated paper collating machine, and they partnered with Kollmorgen to provide the solution.

High-level flexibility
This advanced solution enables users to produce continuous form sheets, individual sheets, and mailing products more quickly and efficiently than ever before. The maximum roll diameter is 50 in., and the roll width can range from 100 to 500 mm (4 - 27 in.). The collated webs can be crimped, glued or stitched. Crimping tools connect the webs. After cross cutting, accelerator belts are used to guide the streams to a shingle conveyor. Once a specified number of streams have been reached, the streams are automatically stacked for packaging.

Unlike traditional machines, it eliminates the need to change the cylinders and gearwheels used for cross cutting or perforating various paper formats thanks to Kollmorgen’s AKM servomotors and precision gear boxes.

Customized formats are ready for use in the freely programmable control unit. Format changeover is executed at the touch-screen display.

Retooling times
The developers at Jakob Graphic Services GmbH are convinced that the key to machine development, the primary design challenge, was to ensure that the cylinder – irrespective of the printing format – would allow for variable cut-off formats of the supplied printed continuous paper webs, along with easily executable adjustments. Even between individual sections it had to be possible to carry out further adjustments to handle challenges like asymmetric formats during processing.

As an example, this functionality would ensure that the size of a 378-mm format calendar block would be increased by 50 mm during continuous printing so that a common inch format could be applied in the process. Although the servo cutter cylinder would be set to 24 in., it would need to be electronically reprogrammed to 17 in. to ensure the said 50 mm would be cut off. Adjustments between the blades or cuts always result in acceleration or deceleration. However, the separating cuts always occur in synchronization with the paper web speed to maximize productivity for the system operator. The Kollmorgen Automation Suite satisfies these needs, while providing Jakob Graphic Services the software and hardware support for not just existing, but future applications as well.

"The crucial factor for the decision to go with the Kollmorgen Automation Suite was that the Motion Control, PLC and HMI/SCADA functionalities – in our case on an industrial PC – are available via a single processor. This standard tool allows the cost-effective introduction of company-specific knowhow and tailored solutions for individual applications," explained Jakob Graphic Services design engineering and technical manager. "Furthermore, it radically speeds up programming and commissioning, and increases machine performance."

The Kollmorgen Automation Suite is rooted in its intuitive Pipe Network™ programming language. It is a scalable system with a standardized development platform that directly links all three main functions of a control system – HMI, PLC and Motion Control – in a common development and software environment. The integrated development tools include a complete set of IEC 61131-3 language editors, (Sequential Function Chart – SFC, Function Block Diagram – FDB, Ladder Diagram - LD, Structured Text - ST and Instruction List – IL), a common program compiler, an offline Motion PLC program simulator, and a HMI development tool. This all-in-one solution considerably reduces programming and commissioning time.

The extensive KAS functions allow the machine developer to quickly assemble the program and achieve the performance output in a system-supported visual project engineering environment. Programming in KAS is simply describing the mechanical relationships between components with the aid of graphical description blocks. An extensive motion library is available for the graphical PipeNetwork editor to complete this task. All the machine's internal processes, no matter how complex, can be simulated to determine the optimum settings and eliminate problems prior to commissioning, with the results loaded directly into the control system.

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