A pallet manufacturer needed to heat magnetic steel to 300 ºF (149 ºC) for insertion into a polypropylene board and turned to THE LAB at Ambrell to design a solution. THE LAB determined an Ambrell EKOHEAT® 40 kW, 50-150 kHz induction heating system with a remote workhead and single-turn channel coil would work well for this metal-to-plastic insertion application.
Initial tests were conducted to optimize the power delivered to the steel beam. The magnetic steel rail achieved the target temperature with this solution in 20 seconds. The polypropylene board was then pushed down on the steel beam to create the metal-to-plastic bond. This met the client's requirements.
Induction offers several advantages for metal-to-plastic insertion. First, it provides faster heating than many other heating options, and that leads to more rapid production. Additionally, it offers an even distribution of heat. Induction also delivers hands-free heating, and it's repeatable and not dependent on operator skill. This makes it ideal for high volume manufacturing. Finally, induction is energy efficient and offered this manufacturer a cleaner method of heating, especially because they were able to use induction to leverage reusable, recyclable materials.