Application of Automation in Textile Industry:
Over the years, extensive use of automation has been noticed in various branches of textiles. In most of textile manufacturing process like ginning, spinning, weaving, knitting, dyeing, printing, finishing, apparel manufacturing, automation is one major key to quality improvement and cost competitiveness. Automated devices or robots are most commonly used in the apparel manufacturing sector specially in cutting and swing sections. This article is about the application and impact of automation in fiber and yarn manufacturing.
Automation in Fiber and Yarn Manufacturing:
Automation in Fiber Manufacturing:
Automation is currently getting used extensively in man-made fiber or polymer composite manufacturing. For example, monitor & control the diameter of the fiber, control the temperature and tension and monitor the properties of the polymer solution while maintaining the uniformity and quality of the products. The use of automation is especially noticeable in micro-denier fiber extrusion, fiber placement. The emphasis on flexible manufacturing, even within the fiber manufacturing industry, has led to the development by some fiber producers of modern & robotic techniques for the rapid change and replacement of spin packs and spinnerets.
Automation in Yarn Manufacturing:
Yarn manufacturing is now so automated that a large spinning mill can be operated by a very small number of people since automatic end piecing and automatic doffing is performed by robotic mechanisms. The spinning mill has the use of automation at every stage from cotton ginning to yarn & cone forming. I have tried to summarize below –
Cotton collection and ginning:
Earlier cotton was collected from trees with the help of labor, but now cotton is collected from trees with the help of automation in different countries of the world. The ginning process is also done with the help of automation or automatic device. Even 20 years ago, it used to take hours to complete the testing process of cotton fiber, today it is completed in a few seconds with the help of HighVolume Instrument (HVI) method. Fiber quality is tested by this HVI machine. The HVI test controls the quality of all the cotton bales which is processed in a spinning mill. This has been possible due to the continuous advancement of modern technology and automation.
Cotton fabrics start their life as giant bales. These are so heavy and can be difficult to move around the industry floor.One time there was no machine used for mixing& opening cotton bales in the blow-room, the workers used their hands to open& mix the large cotton bales, which was very time consuming. But now the opening & mixing is being done in the blow-room automatically. Bale handling is a perfect task for large industrial robots, which can have payloads up to almost 2 tons. Also, more cotton bales are being opened and mixing in less time than before and quality lap is being produced.
Currently, Chute feed system and autoleveller are being used in the carding machine, as a result of which the quality of the sliver has been maintained and the production rate has also increased. Also added is automatic dust collector, auto stop motion etc. If there is any problem in the machine as a result of using the auto-stop device, the machine shuts down automatically. It is also helping to make uniform sliver by reducing handling.
Automatic can changer has been added to the modern draw frame, so now there is no need for operator, rather the production capacity has also increased. Short-term autolevellers are also being used in the current draw frame. The servo-draft is turned on during the run-up after the can change, so the sliver of each meter in draw frame is maintained to give the best quality. Also, automatic filter cleaning devices have been added. Automation in the draw frame has made it possible to reduce the count variation of the sliver, increase the production rate and reduce the manpower requirement.
Simplex has done the least work among the spinning mill machines, which is increasing the production cost of yarn. However, a number of functions have recently been developed in Simplex. Flyer speed in Simplex has been increased from 1000-1500 rpm to 2000 rpm. Also, with the development of drafting system, automatic doffing has been able to reduce the need of workers and doffing time. A few more things have been added to the simplex such as: roving stop motion, false twister, electronic driving system, computer monitoring device, CCD sensor etc.
Ring frame also has the application of automation. As a result, the process can be controlled by servomotor and servo-drive. Setting can be done by just pressing a button. Currently each roller in the ring frame is controlled by a separate motor and a separate drive. It has been possible to make multi-twist and multi-count threads suitable for different fashions. The automatic doffer system is currently gaining customer acceptance, as it has reduced the need for manpower and supervision, resulting in less time now than before, while reducing the need for workers.
At present in the process of making yarn, new technologies have been invented in ring spinning and application of automation has been noticed which is different from open-end spinning, air-jet spinning and Murata Vortex System (MVS).
For the sake of automation, it is now possible to increase the speed of the ring spindle to 20,000 rpm and the high speed rotor to 100,000 rpm. As a result of automation, the machines of the spinning mill are capable of producing 20 times more than what they used to produce 20 years ago.
The use of yarn fault detector in auto-coner is increasing the quality of yarn.
Things of Spinning that have been Replaced by Automation:
- Bale Pluckers & Handling
- Automatic Bale Opener
- Multi-Function Separator – New Development
- Computer Controlled Cleaning Efficiency
- Computer Integrated Manufacturing System
- Automatic Waste Evacuation System
- Automatic Grinding System
- Automatic Can Changing Mechanism
- Draw Frame Inter-Linking System
- Automatic Can Transport System
- Multi-Motor Drive System
- Automatic Winding Tension Compensating Device
- Automatic Doffing
- Individual Spindle Monitoring Sensor
- Automations with Auto Doffer (Robodoff, Servotrail, Cop Transportation etc.)
- Automation in Rotor Spinning (AMISPIN, QTOP, IQCLEAN)
- Automatic Piecing Devices
- Automatic Suction Devices
- Automatic Tension Controlling Device
In a word, the combination of different machines with automation or automatic control has increased the efficiency of the machines in fiber and yarn manufacturing, reduced the workload of workers in different sectors of the factory and increased the rate of production. As a result, it has been possible to produce more products in each sector at lower cost and in less time.
Author of this Article:
Md. Imran Hossain
B.Sc. in Textile Engineering
Shahid Abdur Rab Serniabat Textile Engineering College, Barisal.
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