The Radio Frequency Co SMC preheater.
The Radio Frequency Co SMC preheater.

Radio Frequency Company, based in Millis, Massachusetts, USA, reports that this equipment can enhance the distribution of reinforcement fibres in the moulding process, leading to enhanced product quality and strength. It can also reduce press cure time by 50%, and is especially effective for thicker bosses and structures.

The Macrowave™ SMC Preheater uses radio frequency heating technology to provide uniform heating throughout the entire thickness of the SMC instantly, without requiring any temperature differential to force heat by conduction from the surface to the centre.

The equipment is capable of preheating SMC loads up to 30 inches wide x 84 inches long in under 1 minute. A PLC controls the heat cycle time, power level and conveyor movement to synchronise with the press operation. The conveyor can either feed the SMC charge straight through the press or return it to the feed end after heating.

The Macrowave SMC Preheater is priced from $95 000, depending upon belt size and other customer requirements.