EcoInCure, a new body drying process developed by Dürr, permits the best possible top coat appearance and maximum process reliability
EcoInCure is a new body drying process developed by Dürr which heats and cools bodies from the inside. It’s a technology that meets all the requirements for future drying tasks connected to electromobility and new materials. The transverse mode of operation is the first of its kind and the key factor for a compact system design. The new heating concept also reduces power consumption by 25%.
The conduction of the air flow with EcoInCure is the key to the best possible top coat appearance and maximum process reliability. Nozzles with long throw distances are aimed into the inside of the body through the opening for the windshield and heat it up from the inside out.
This guarantees extremely even heating and cooling conditions for the entire body. Thermal component stresses are reduced, and the heating times for the body are reduced by up to 30%.
This new body drying method offers a particular advantage for the increasing number of electric vehicles. Among other things, these need well-reinforced rocker panels to protect the batteries in the event of a side impact.
The EcoInCure principle, where bodies are heated from the inside, works especially well when drying these rocker panels with their increased material thickness. The same goes for future vehicle generations with new materials and material combinations in conjunction with new joining methods. Here, specifically, the reduced thermal component stresses achieved by the new drying method ensure increased process reliability.
On the outer skin EcoInCure allows for minimal flow velocities, which greatly improves the appearance and distribution of the top coat. EcoInCure enables efficient drying of different body types since the temperature and volumetric flows can be adapted individually. Custom heating and cooling processes can be defined for each body. This is made possible by the cyclic mode of operation of EcoInCure and the option to assign a separate unit to each module.
A new heating concept
A new feature in EcoInCure is the heating concept based around a central heat exchanger. Instead of the local heat exchangers in the circulating air units, centrally heated circulating air heating gas is fed to each zone. This type of air circulation is highly variable and more precise, reduces the pressure losses, and accordingly the total electrical energy requirement of EcoInCure by 25%.
The new system design, with bodies passing through transversely, permits an extremely space-saving layout: it halves the dryer length of EcoInCure compared with conventional dryers. In addition, integration of the recirculating air units on the same level means that less steel structure is needed. As a result, body drying in new paint shops as well as modifications in existing paint shops is much more space-efficient and thus also more variable with respect to capacity reserves.
Each body gets an individual, software-supported quality certificate for the entire drying process. It accurately tracks the drying conditions both during drying of the paint as well as during bake-hardening of the steel and aluminium for the purpose of crash safety. The data is acquired and evaluated using the software solution iTAC.IoT.Suite (previously EcoEMOS). iTAC.IoT.Suite, the new generation of production control systems from Dürr, permits continuous digital tracking of the drying conditions for each body.
Automation expertiseThe Dürr Group is one of the world’s leading mechanical and plant engineering firms with outstanding automation expertise. Products, systems and services offered by the Group enable highly efficient manufacturing processes in different industries.
Dürr supplies sectors like the automotive industry, the mechanical engineering, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, and the woodworking industry. The company has 86 business locations in 28 countries. The Group generated sales of €3.57 billion in 2016. Dürr has around 14,500 employees and operates in the market with five divisions.
EcoDry X for semi-automatic systems
Dürr has rounded off its range of dry paint overspray separation systems with the new EcoDry X filter system. EcoDry X is the counterpart to the established, fully automatic EcoDryScrubber. Dürr’s product family permits differentiated technical solutions in automotive serial painting, from semi-automatic to fully automatic.
EcoDry X is a multi-stage, easy-to-handle filter system. It comprises a filter trolley with six filter boxes and downstream pocket filters as the second filter stage. The disposable filter boxes made of cardboard can be quickly and easily replaced using the filter trolleys, if necessary even while production is underway.
The system automatically indicates when the cardboard filters are saturated via a visualisation on the control panel. If the filters need to be changed, the filter trolley with the saturated filter boxes is manually undocked and will be replaced by a prepared trolley with fresh filters. The saturated cardboard filters can then be conveniently disposed of in containers in a ventilated preparation area. Replacement takes just a few minutes, and production can run unaffected in parallel.
EcoDry X with its proprietary Dürr filter box sets the standard for semi-automatic separation systems when it comes to separation capacity and filter costs. This is thanks to the technology used, which is based on filtration rather than impact separation. This also addresses the fact that each paint exhibits discrete separation behaviour that influences the amount of overspray produced. Users do not have to purchase filter boxes as consumables from Dürr. The trolleys are standardised so they can also be equipped with filter boxes from third-party manufacturers.
EcoDry X is suitable for green-field and brown-field plants. The new filter system, which has only recently come onto the market, can also be easily and reliably operated by personnel with just a limited amount of training. The first plant, designed for painting car bodies using a primer, base, and clear coat process, is being used by car manufacturer Mahindra in its plant to the south east of Mumbai.