The terms “environment” and “sustainability” have long since been top priorities at the development department of KABELSCHLEPP Metool. Products with a longer service life, energy-efficient functions, and a compact design reflect this claim. With a view to its ambitious sustainability targets and the rapidly increasing demands of the market, the cable carrier manufacturer is currently increasing its development work regarding sustainable products, production methods, and marketing activities.
After an already published report on the energy targets of KABELSCHLEPP Metool, this article summarizes the product-related sustainability efforts. An article on the social aspects of sustainable company development will follow shortly.
“Sustainability is no longer just ‘nice to have’ for industrial companies, but an absolute must,” says Frank Springer, Vice President Marketing & Innovation at TSUBAKI KABELSCHLEPP, about his current market observations. “Our customers have very clear requirements here for us as a manufacturer and supplier, which we are currently implementing at even greater speed. With the Tsubaki Eco Link label, we already established evaluation criteria back in 2011 in order to promote sustainable product developments. With this in mind, we are currently making progress with great commitment – with regard to our production, our products, and their influence on energy efficiency and sustainability at our customers.”
One of the declared company objectives is to manufacture particularly durable products that can be easily dismantled and recycled at the end of their service life. The steel cable carriers from KABELSCHLEPP Metoolare sustainable by design, as they can be used over many decades and can also be fully recycled. The company is currently working on the “cable carrier of the future” at full speed. This entails, for example, clarifying which alternative, particularly sustainable materials are suitable for use in cable carriers.
Production with significantly reduced waste and conservation of resources
In addition to this, KABELSCHLEPP Metool is also focusing on production with less waste and on conserving resources by using regranulate. In 2022, 18.9 percent of the total consumption of plastics were regranulates. The only reason why this figure was not higher is the limited availability of this material. The volume of injection molding scrap was reduced by almost 20 percent between 2021 and 2022 and this was re-used in production as regranulate. The aim is to further minimize these volumes by using hot-runner technology and by reducing sprues with optimized tool design.
Energy-efficient use of the cable carriers can be further optimized by means of process control and monitoring. For example, a standardized module can be used to monitor the push and pull forces acting on the cable carrier, or generate wear predictions for the glide shoes. Real time data are used to establish force changes and the actual wear. “This allows our customers to save energy during operation and to avoid failures,” explains Frank Springer. “Other modules for monitoring and forecast tasks are currently being developed.“