As part of a $2 million-plus expansion to support its burgeoning business in the medical market, custom injection molder PTA Plastics has added six injection molding machines, three each for its Longmont, Colo., and Oxford, Conn., facilities.
The new presses for the Colorado plant include a Wittmann Battenfeld EcoPower 110/130 hybrid machine with 125 tons of clamping force and a fully self-contained Class 7 clean room, which marks the company’s entry into clean room manufacturing. Since 2019, the employee-owned company has been certified through MedAccred, a program that identifies and verifies compliance with critical manufacturing process requirements for medical devices.
Although PTA has seen an increase in demand for medical products related to COVID-19, new programs from existing customers and some new customers are driving growth.
PTA also purchased two Wittmann Battenfeld MacroPower hydraulic injection molding machines with clamping forces of 720 tons and 1,235 tons, and an EcoPower hybrid unit with 100 tons of clamping force. From Engel, the company acquired an e-mac hybrid press with 55 tons of clamping force and a victory tiebarless hybrid machine with 180 tons of clamping force.
The Colorado facility now has 20 presses and the Connecticut facility has 19. The acquisition of new warehouses at both operations freed up space for the additional equipment, the company said.
The company has not added employees.
“We maintained a stable workforce throughout the pandemic. Our focus is increasing our automation capabilities while maintaining our current staffing,” said President Rich Dorans.
The machines’ Industry 4.0 capabilities were a key consideration. “Assuring that all presses are equipped with Industry 4.0 technology designed to leverage machine learning and AI will revolutionize PTA’s manufacturing operations,” Dorans said. “The manufacturing floor advancements at both facilities supports our strategic plan to achieve a productive smart factory moving forward.”
The Industry 4.0 technology allowed PTA’s machine technicians and maintenance personnel to receive remote training from Wittmann Battenfeld and Engel.
Dorans would not discuss specifics of the kinds of medical products the new machines will be producing.
In addition to the medical market, PTA serves customers in the defense, security and emerging technologies markets. It also provides mold-making services.
PTA Plastics, Longmont, Colo., 303-652-2500, www.ptaplastics.com