Emerson’s Ultrasonic Systems Reduce Mold Cleaning Time from Hours to Minutes
Team IIGA
July 28, 2021

Emerson has announced its new Branson™ MCX Series ultrasonic mold cleaning systems, which feature side-mounted immersible transducers and powerful immersion heaters that can provide more effective, fast and efficient cleaning than other systems on the market. Compared to manual cleaning of plastics injection molds, which may take up to three hours or more, the Branson MCX Series actually does a better job in 15 to 20 minutes, depending on mold design and level of residue, dramatically increasing productivity and avoiding potential mold damage.

Unlike many competitive systems, the Branson cleaners are purpose-built for cleaning injection molds, which is why the side-mounted transducers represent such an important innovation compared to transducers mounted on the bottom of the tank. Since most plastic injection molds are rectangular, with a lot of the design details on the surface facing the side of the tank, side-mounted transducers result in a more intense and focused cavitation as compared to bottom-mounted transducers. Cleaning is more effective and takes less time.

“Manual scrubbing is still the most commonly used method for cleaning plastic injection molds, but it is highly labor intensive and can take two or three hours,” said Nitin Phadnis, director of Emerson’s welding and assembly business. “Even then, the end result may not be as good or predictable as ultrasonic cleaning, which that takes just 15 to 20 minutes and dramatically reduces the risk of damaging intricate mold design details that can be very expensive and time consuming to repair. No other process cleans mold components faster, safer or more thoroughly than Branson ultrasonic technology.”  

In contrast to traditional manual cleaning, which requires high concentrations of often-toxic cleaning solutions, brushes and other tools, Branson ultrasonic cleaning systems use ultrasonic technology to produce fluid cavitation, a non-contact cleaning process. Mold halves are placed between the transducers mounted on opposite sides of the tank, which is filled with cleaning solution. The system emits ultrasonic waves into the solution, creating minute bubbles (or cavities) that eventually implode, releasing tremendous amounts of energy. The resulting turbulence dislodges contaminants from the mold surfaces and even blind holes and tiny crevices, where brushes cannot reach. The cavitation turbulence enhances the effectiveness of the cleaning chemicals and results in better release, improved productivity, less maintenance, longer mold life and reduced chemical waste.

The MCX Series cleaners are pre-configured in three stock tank sizes to accommodate small molds up to 24 x 24 x 10 inches, medium-sized molds up to 38 x 38 x 14 inches and molds as large as 52 x 48 x 17 inches. The side-mounted immersible transducers can deliver cavitation in 25 and 40 kilohertz frequencies. In addition, the MCX Series can be configured to include one or more rinse stations to remove latent chemistries and add rust inhibiting chemistries to improve mold life and performance.

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