The IKV projects at K 2019 in a video interview

IKV exhibited three processes from injection moulding, additive manufacturing and plasma coating at its stand. Jens Wipperfürth, M.Sc., head of the Department of Part Design and Materials Technology at IKV, answered the questions of the press team at K 2019.

Injection moulding project
The process shown at the stand demonstrated the fully automatic, model-based setup of injection moulding processes - the product being a housing for the Raspberry Pi single-board computer. IKV and its partners are linking an automation solution with the use of artificial intelligence (neural networks) for the first time. The setup process is carried out automatically and thus saves a considerable amount of time; quality parameters are determined objectively and recorded and processed automatically. In a subproject, additional functionalisation was carried out: An anti-slip lip made of TPU was applied by additive manufacturing - this was also done fully automatically and integrated into the overall process.

Additive manufacturing project
IKV demonstrated a way to generate complex three-dimensional infill structures in any component geometry prior to processing in the slicer - this makes it possible to design additive-manufactured components according to load paths. The component can be passed to the structural simulation with the infill and iteratively adapted. The density can be locally adjusted without stress peaks and the structures can in all cases be printed using the FDM method. The printing process of the 3D infill structures was demonstrated live at the booth.

Plasma Project
At its stand at K 2019, IKV presented a simple system technology without large vacuum chambers for plasma coating of particularly small hollow bodies, in this case medical syringes - the syringe itself is the vacuum chamber in which the plasma is ignited. The silicone-free plasma coating in prefilled syringes reduces friction and increases the storage time due to the barrier effect. Plasma coatings are also used for food packaging: IKV is currently developing a resistant plasma coating for returnable PET bottles in order to extend their life cycle despite multiple washing processes with caustic soda and thus strengthen the cycle.