The Coater Production Management System: A New Element in Handling Technology

Date: 16 October 2005

Today’s glass market shows a clear trend towards coated glass, as modern coatings can be practically custom-made to fit into any environmental conditions.

The different coatings create a constant challenge to producers of this type of glass. To gain perfect quality, not only the coating technology itself, but also the production technology is of vital importance.

Grenzebach Maschinenbau GmbH – well known manufacturer of flat glass production solutions – has turned special attention to handling technology for coated glass. After having developed special equipment for coating lines such as the tin-side/air-side stacker, the company now offers a Coater Production Management System which optimizes the glass surface of the cut sizes to be produced and determines the most favorable production sequence for the coater. The result is an up to 20% gain in efficiency for the coating process and a production time of eight hours or less where a conventional production sequence traditionally requires ten hours for the same quantity fo cut sizes.

The Grenzebach Coater Production Managment System constitutes a higher-level system for planning, managing and quality assurance in coating lines and comprises an offline Production Planning Module and an online Production and Quality Assurance Module.

- The Production Planning Module manages the cut sizes to be produced as well as the feasible and available stock sizes. It includes key information such as load factor, cutting yield, number of loads etc.
- Its counterpart, the Production Control Module, realizes the scheduled production process. Cut sizes with coating or shape defects are identified, signaled and automatically replaced by cutting new ones. When required, new optimized cutting plans are generated online.
- The third module comprises optional Quality Management where plate-related data of all associated plant sections can be stored, processed or transmitted to a higher-level system enabling optimized process recording and analysis.

Dimension and production conditions for coating lines differ widely between Europe, Asian and North America, so do Grenzebach handling solutions to meet the specific needs. As different as the approach may be, all handling technology in a coating line may significantly increase its yield. The new approach to the process of coating cut sizes and application of a Coater Production Management System opens up new perspectives for a gain in productivity and added value, thus offering clear advantages to coating line operators.

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