Mechanical and industrial engineering company ystral was established in Stuttgart in 1959. The company designs and builds mixing, dispersion and powder wetting equipment for fluid mechanics applications. The family company is now based in Ballrechten-Dottingen near Freiburg. It has 287 employees and an annual turnover of around 52 million euros. Its customer base includes companies in the pharmaceutical, chemical and food industries as well as the home and personal care sectors.
ystral built a mobile process unit consisting of a powder wetting and dispersion machine and a process container with a jetstream mixer for use in clean room conditions in the pharmaceutical industry. Until now, the customer in the pharma industry had to move similar units by hand. Due to their weight, they could no longer be transported safely and ergonomically. ystral also had some clear requirements: The mobile unit could be no taller than two metres, including the drive system, and needed to be easy to manoeuvre in tight spaces. Operational comfort needed to remain high, even with liquid splashing around in the container. The system also needed to meet clean room standards. ystral found Blickle online when they went looking for a suitable project partner.
“We met a number of times to discuss the issues in detail. We suggested the ErgoMove 4000 early on in the process,” said Daniel Hirschler, Sales Manager at Blickle. This electric drive system enables loads of up to four tonnes to be moved with little effort. “We modified our standard system to meet ystral’s requirements,” continued Daniel Hirschler. Blickle’s designers recommended placing the drive axle in the middle of the carriage to make the turning circle as small as possible and make the carriage easy to manoeuvre in tight spaces. Blickle’s designers came up with a special version of the ErgoMove 4000 with a reduced height so that it could be moved through doors. Blickle also developed a remote control attached to the mobile unit to ensure that it could be controlled safely. This control system allows users to position themselves wherever they need to be relative to the unit and identify obstacles along their route in good time. Many of the components of the drive system are made from corrosion-resistant stainless steel or have a zinc-nickel coating so that they meet the stringent requirements for clean room applications. A specialised control unit for the drive motors ensures that the system accelerates and brakes smoothly. This significantly reduced how much the transported liquid sloshes around.
The tailored ErgoMove 4000 significantly improved the handling and flexibility of ystral’s processes. The process unit can now be moved by just one employee without any effort. In the words of Christoph Geng, Project Manager: “Being able to switch between driving modes is particularly helpful. The synchronised control unit of the drive motor motors makes it easy to move the process unit long distances. Thanks to the single wheel control mode, the unit can be swivelled on the spot and manoeuvred with precision.”