Spotlight: Quality developments

Materials World magazine
3 Sep 2014

Natalie Daniels looks at recent technical developments that enhance the quality of existing products.

For most industries, ensuring quality is at an impeccable standard is crucial. New products are designed with quality in mind, often requiring specialist equipment.

Spiroflow Ltd, a British manufacturer, has designed the T2 Angled Bulk Bag Discharger to tackle dust within a factory environment and control dangerous contamination. The development should limit residues and could be useful for a range of materials, including pharmaceutical powders. The discharger stops fine dust from sticking via an airtight operation to reduce settlement, and uses an angled framework to empty unwanted residue. The discharger can prevent harmful blockages and avoid dust settling in powdered products, resulting in improved hygiene.

Ensuring quality on a different scale is Micro-Epsilon, UK, which has developed the colourCONTROL ACS700. The technology precisely measures colour precision on shiny and reflective surfaces. Upgraded from the ACS2, the ACS700 has a 2,000Hz frequency and surfaces in a 360 degree circular motion to provide accurate measurements of colour recognition. With high accuracy, the colour measurement system identifies up to 15 colours via a sensor with an optimal measurement distance of 28mm. This can be used for a range of applications, including plastics engineering.

Meanwhile, Eaton, also UK, has launched the E67 Long Range Perfect Prox range of photoelectric sensors for greater precision at longer distances, which can detect at ranges of 2.4m. The sensors allow accuracy regardless of any colour, reflectance or surface shape changes. LEDs at the top of the sensors indicate when they are detecting a target. This new technology reduces background interference by focusing only on necessary objects. Eaton claims that users will also benefit from the simple installation, intended to prevent operating errors. The sensor is manufactured in both AC and DC outputs.

Quality control is also important to set high standards. The HAAKE Viscometer iQ Rheometer, designed by US firm Thermo Scientific, is a standalone instrument with a touch screen interface. A temperature assist function controls and measures sample temperature and reduces measuring time. The rheometer has been designed to give high standard of performance and control.
With technology improvements such as these, industries are sure to follow in the same footsteps and benefit from increased quality products.