Arburg Energy Efficiency Award 2014 for Festo

Festo production and integrated energy optimisation

Festo decided to set up a plant with a completely new polymer production facility and a focus on energy efficiency, the Global Production Centre Hassel, at its St. Ingbert location in the Saarland. The plant is currently under construction and will be finished in early 2015. All the important factors in terms of the building, production and machines are taken into account here. "Thanks to its many years of know-how in this sector and its holistic approach, Arburg was an important advisor and partner for Festo in this area. We jointly examined the 45 Allrounders for thermoplastic and 12 vertical Allrounders for elastomer processing in detail with regard to energy requirements and production efficiency. Arburg was then tasked with devising optimal machine concepts. For the thermoplastics, electric Allrounder Alldrive machines were selected, which were specially configured to meet the requirements at the Hassel plant. For the elastomers, the machines are to be converted to speed-regulated pump drives.

The key elements of the holistic concept also include insulation of moulds and plasticising cylinders, optimisation of material pre-drying and supply through an efficient central solution and waste reduction, e.g. through lower sprue weights and fewer hot runner connections. Due to the nature of the products, the temperature levels were selected so that cooling is only necessary during midsummer, meaning that heat recovery can be dispensed with.

As an expert in additive manufacturing, Festo tests the Freeformer

Owing to its many years of wide-ranging experience in the additive manufacturing of prototypes and one-off parts, Festo was already supplied with a Freeformer in early 2013 in order to subject it to in-depth testing from a user point-of-view. The Freeformer expands the energy and efficiency end of the Arburg portfolio because fully functional one-off parts and small-volume batches can be produced very cost efficiently directly from standard granulates without a mould using 3D CAD files. The results and feedback from Festo provided Arburg with valuable information for optimisation and further development. Festo sees opportunities for using the Freeformer in its own business predominantly in the areas of prototyping and, following subsequent further development, in small-volume production.


ARBURG is one of the leading global manufacturers of injection moulding machines for plastics and the relevant additional equipment.