Conair “Common Control” for Dryers Brings New Features

Conair, Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania, a supplier of innovative auxiliary equipment solutions has introduced the DC-B Common Control across its drying product line with throughputs above 15 lbs per hour. Conair’s multi-year effort to implement a common control across all of its HMI-interfaced upstream auxiliary equipment is complete. Customers can equip any of the following drying products with a control platform whose interface shares the same interactions and features as other Conair auxiliary equipment:

  • Mobile Carousel Plus™ dX Series desiccant dryers
  • Carousel Plus™ D Series Model Dryers
  • CR Series PET Crystallizers
  • ResinWorks™ and Multi-Hopper Cart Central Drying Systems
  • Hot Air Dryers
  • GasTrac™ CGT Process Air Heaters
  • HP Electric Heater Packs and HTC Hopper Temperature Controllers

“The introduction of the DC-B Common Control across the Conair drying product line represents a tremendous, multi-year engineering effort to create an identical user experience across virtually all of Conair’s upstream auxiliary equipment. It means that our dryer customers now receive a control that offers the same interaction style, features, colors, languages, communication and monitoring capabilities whether you’re processing 15 lbs per hour or 5,000 lbs per hour,” said A.J. Zambanini, Conair drying products manager.

Since Conair announced plans to adopt the common control platform in the dryers, the company has added three new features, including:

  • An automatic Airflow Monitor, which electronically measures the total airflow quantity (cfm) in all drying equipment, complementing the automatic dewpoint monitoring to ensure that the quality and quantity of drying airflow are correct.
  • Setback on input – Normally, temperature setback is automatically triggered over a period of hours by the elevated temperature readings that occur when a process slows or shuts down. The new setback on input feature allows the system to reduce to a standby temperature based on machine downtime. This gives the user an additional level of control and provides energy-saving and material overdry protection automatically, such as when production must pause for a mold change.
  • Self-adapting “smart” recipes – the DC-B control offers 20 standard recipes and can store up to 3,000 production recipes overall. These recipes not only take into account the basic dry parameters of temperature and dew point but also include the loading criteria and alarm setpoints. As more features such as VFD, level control and drying monitor are added, these inputs also are captured in the recipe. This means the recipes are truly “smart,” enabling the entire dryer setup to change with the push of a button.

The common control for dryers is available in two different versions. Dryers from 15 to 400 lbs per hour, which would include the D Series dryers and the dX Series mobile dryers can use a Plus or a Premium version of the control. The Plus version is a 4-inch color touch-screen control. It is geared toward operators who like to keep things simple by using push buttons, LCD controllers and toggle switches. Start/stop, dew-point setting and temperature setting all can be accomplished from the main screen with almost no other capabilities visible. However, real-text alarms and alerts can be accessed on a secondary screen and still another page shows all of the current data and status in chart form.

The 7-inch premium DC-B control (optional on smaller dryers, and standard on larger D Series dryers with throughput from 600 to 5000 lbs per hour adds more feature content to the system and provides a larger touch-screen area, along with additional navigation features. Dryer set-up and status information appear graphically on a diagram. The Premium 7-inch control also can be supplied with an energy-saving “Optimizer” package – developed for PET processing – that adds a variable frequency blower drive, Drying Monitor™ probe, return-air dew-point monitor, volatile trap and process-filter monitor to D Series dryers. Optimizer is an algorithm-based drying control that automatically reduces energy usage based on the drying needs of the resin.

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