BERU (BorgWarner) is a leading manufacturer of diesel cold start systems with an estimated worldwide market share of 40% of glow plugs (Wikipedia).
In the manufacture of glow plugs, there is the challenge of dispensing a very accurate quantity of a magnesium oxide powder into complex geometry of the glow tube. This process must deliver a precise and repeatable amount of the powder into the tube and heater coil assembly. This must be delivered in small doses, forcing the powder to settle before measurement, then repeated until a correct level/quantity is achieved. This process must be fully automated to meet the capacity demands, and quality of a high volume, premium part.
BERU understood that this technology does not exist in the market as a standard product, and therefore needed a partner who could design and integrate custom solutions that did not already exist. They needed a partner who could provide answers to problems, together with a reference of experience in specialist automation.
acp systems AG was approached at a trade exhibition to provide a feasibility study as a strong potential partner in bespoke processes and automation for this project. From acceptance on the concept, a fully automated production line was manufactured and delivered to dispense magnesium oxide powder, repeatably and accurately within a 6 second cycle time. The system incorporates a turntable to index glow-plug tubes for processing to dispensing, or measurement stations, to ensure the accuracy of the final dose. The system has been running in full production for 8 years.