On the Verge of a Green and Clean Era in the Metal Tool Industry
Expensive metalworking fluids are no longer needed to cool and lubricate workpieces and cutting tools in the machine tool industry. Instead, there is now a proven green and clean method, EcoCooling, that uses only ionized and cooled air and has none of the environmental hazards and costs related to oil-based fluids.
EcoCooling is the result of long-term, interdisciplinary R&D from the same team that developed the technology behind Amazon’s ground-breaking family of front-lit Kindle devices. Now the group of scientists, engineers and experienced businesspeople from various disciplines has developed a dry, clean and environmentally friendly method to lubricate metal workpieces with ionized and cooled air without using any emulsions.
“Workshops have wanted to get rid of fluids and many have tried to find a solution to the problem, but with poor results”, says Leo Hatjasalo, co-founder and CEO of EcoCooling. “Now we have the answer to this demand, since EcoCooling can be used even with the hardest known metals like chrome, titanium and tungsten carbides.”
The global market value for metalworking fluids is estimated at approximately $16 billion this year. It is growing steadily, with estimates for the global market value for machine tools expected to grow from $160 billion to $200 billion in 5 years’ time. The growth is driven, for example by the accelerating need for components in the aerospace, automotive and transport sectors.
“EcoCooling is based on the fact that ionized air penetrates the cutting zone and forms a dry lubricant that decreases cutting friction and generated heat, at the same time speeding up the oxide layer formation,” explained Mr. Hatjasalo. “The process is patented on all continents, and at the moment we are validating it to include all types of machine tools.”
EcoCooling is not only a way to cut down the costs of emulsions, but also a way to improve productivity through higher cutting speed, reduced wear of cutting tools and minimized maintenance costs.
Since the metal chips are not contaminated by any fluids, they can also be fully recycled without cleaning. It also eliminates toxic fluid waste and fumes, in addition to minimizing CO2 emissions, since no oil is used.
The technology makes it possible to build smaller and cheaper metalworking machines, since the EcoCooling unit is very compact in size.
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