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Reliable Automation Reduces Time and Effort Needed for Cutting Application

Industry - Material Processing

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Summary: Nicolaides & Kountouris Metal Company LLC manufactures soundproofing and insulation panels. They needed a system to efficiently cut these panels to the correct dimensions; their old cutting machine was inefficient and required constant operator supervision.  Using a PLC+HMI from Unitronics, Nicolaides & Kountouris Metal Company LLC automated their cutting system, making it more reliable and efficient.

“UniStream offers user-friendly operation of the machine, extensive reliability and advanced automation where extensive operation supervision is not required.”

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Nicolaides & Kountouris Metal Company LLC provides products and solutions for the building and construction industries.  They offer both standard product lines and custom solutions, ranging from paneling and fasteners to beams and door frames, to fasteners and fixtures.  Among the products that Nicolaides & Kountouris manufacture are panels for soundproofing and insulation.

A top concern for Nicolaides & Kountouris Metal Company was ensuring that each panel is cut to the necessary size and dimensions, without variations or inconsistencies.  Their cutting machine used to be controlled with old-fashioned timers, relays, and other dated electronics; it required constant supervision by an operator to run without errors.

The engineers at Nicolaides & Kountouris wanted to implement a more modern control system that would enable the cutting machine to run automatically with a high level of reliability and minimal operator involvement.  They selected a UniStream 10.4-inch programmable logic controller +HMI from Unitronics; this PLC controls a circular saw mounted on a moving table.  The operator just needs to set the number and size of the panels being cut and the UniStream does the rest. The PLC secures the panel on the table, moves the saw perpendicular to the panel during the cut, and returns the saw to its original position for the next cut.

Working with a shaft encoder, the UniStream measures the correct length of the cut.  Three limit switches and a proximity sensor are connected to the PLC to determine the correct positioning of the saw, up – in – out – down respectively.  Unitronics all-in-one design resulted in “a user-friendly operation of the machine, extensive reliability and advanced automation where extensive operation supervision is not required.” Nicolaides & Kountouris Metal Company LLC observed a clear increase in productivity in terms of time management and the quantity and quality of the product produced.

Additionally, UniLogic software for programmable controllers, “feature rich environment and ease of use … shrink the time and resources needed to complete a program.” One engineer adds that UniLogic “is the most advanced, user friendly and intuitive platform to date.”  Finally, the customer service was unbeatable, with experienced application engineers on call without added costs or service plans for Nicolaides & Kountouris Metal Company.

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