The exhibitors at this year's LIGNA will show that the processing capabilities of today's woodworking machines extend far beyond "just" wood, encompassing plastics and composite panels, insulation materials, building materials and more.
The range of specialized, high-quality woodworking solutions continues to grow every year. Only at LIGNA will industry professionals get a comprehensive overview of all the latest technologies and solutions on the market. According to estimates by the German Engineering Federation (VDMA), the woodworking machinery manufacturing sector already generates an estimated 10 percent of its sales outside of its core wood industry business. It's hardly surprising, then, that "Processing of Plastics and Composites" will feature as one of the keynote themes at the next LIGNA trade show in Hannover, Germany, which runs from 22 to 26 May 2017.
Industry professionals requiring solutions for processing plastic and composite materials can expect to find a wide range of options on offer, no matter what size company they happen to work for. The Homag Group, for instance, has developed a whole line of machines for processing plastics, from automatic storage systems, P series panel saws and CNC machining centers right through to a variety of packaging systems.
Homag's processing machines come with supporting software that includes a database where users can store parameters for each material type, thereby ensuring optimal processing. Maka Systems and Reichenbacher, which have traditionally specialized in wood and lightweight-part processing systems, will be showcasing 5-axis machining solutions that offer a wide range of processing options, from simultaneous machining of small, intricate parts to the production of large-dimension parts. The Weinig Group's Powermat series of molders are highly flexible machines that are particularly suited to processing plastic parts and foams. One of the SCM Group's specialties is CNC-controlled sizing and the deburring and sanding of advanced materials. Its SZ Plast automatic single-blade beam saw is specifically designed to process plastic materials.
IMA's Combima Systems solution, on the other hand, is ideally suited for throughfeed edge banding and processing of aluminum composites.
Tooling is the critical interface between machine and material. Leuco's proprietary p-System comprises a range of saw blades and cutters specifically developed for processing non-wood materials. New in Leitz’s product range is the BrillanceCut circular saw blade which delivers excellent results when processing plastics and composite materials. Mechanical and vacuum systems are critical to the efficient handling of different materials. Two key suppliers of such systems who will be exhibiting at LIGNA are Schmalz and Eurotech. Guided Tours to exhibitors' stands and technical lectures in the Robotation Academy will round out the product offering at the world’s most important woodworking and timber processing show. LIGNA's comprehensive coverage of the latest plastics and composite material processing solutions makes it an absolute must-see for anyone already working in or intending to enter this fast-growing market.