The plastics processing lab in the Jack Burke Research and Economic Development Center at Penn State Behrend, Erie, Pennsylvania, has taken delivery of a 101-ton Zhafir Zeres injection molding machine with 3.21 ounce shot size (ZE 900/210). The press, consigned from Absolute Haitian, Worcester, Massachusetts, is electric with integrated hydraulics for core pull, ejectors, carriage movement and optional valve gates.
The Zeres molding machine will be in operation in time for fall undergraduate classes, Plastics Training Academy classes, tutorials and conferences. “We’re aware of the challenge the plastics industry faces in recruiting next-generation engineering talent. Providing access to current injection molding machine technology is one way we can help address this issue,” said Glenn Frohring, one of the owners of Absolute Haitian.
“Penn State Behrend’s B.S. in plastics engineering technology is the only plastics-specific undergraduate degree program in the Penn State system and one of only four accredited plastics engineering technology programs in the United States. The college’s plastics processing lab is the largest and best-equipped undergraduate educational facility of its type. Graduate schools respect our students because they actually know how to operate an injection molding machine as well as other processing and testing equipment,” said Brad Johnson, lecturer in engineering at Penn State Behrend.
The 10,000 sq. ft. lab’s comprehensive list of equipment includes injection molding, extrusion, blow molding, injection blow molding, thermoforming, compounding and blown film technology. Currently, there are 11 injection molding machines in use.