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The Power Of Training
Paulson Training Programs Helps Empower Injection and Extruder Operators at BD Medical Systems; Results in Higher Efficiency, Improved Productivity
BD Medical Systems, Inc., Sandy, UT USA
Captive Injection Molder and Extruder – worldwide corporation, in business since 1982, approximately 1,200 employees – custom molds and extrudes medical devices including syringes, caps, and tubing. Extrusion operation has 5 single screw extruders producing medical tubing, and one twin-screw extruder for in-house compounding of materials.
As one of the largest medical products companies in the world, BD molds and extrudes high volumes of precision medical devices; and in the medical business, there is no room for error. The company’s injection molding department was already a satisfied Paulson customer, and recommended that BD’s extrusion department look into implementing Paulson Training as well. After reviewing the available extrusion training programs on the market, BD chose Paulson based on not only the strong recommendation of the molding department, but the fact that every extrusion operator who reviewed the Paulson program preferred it to any others they watched. Benefits of implementing the Paulson training methods include:
- Improved knowledge for extruder operators, for both single and twin-screw extruders – many of the operators indicated they already knew most of what was necessary for successful operation of the machines; after taking the Paulson courses, “they realized they still had a lot to learn”, said Craig Elison, Extrusion Engineer in charge of training at BD.
- Improved uptime for extruders – due to the better knowledge of the operators, they know how to respond more quickly to any machine problems that may arise.
Operators now have a better knowledge of what each temperature zone does on the extruder. Material is conveyed in the first zone, melted in the second zone, etc. – and based on the knowledge gained from the Paulson training, operators know when to increase or decrease temperature profiles in each zone for optimal melt performance.
Operators also have learned how to determine when the screen pack on the extruder is clogged and needs to be changed, by noticing increased pressure and the limits of what pressures are acceptable.
When describing how implementing the Paulson training has improved efficiencies in BD’s extrusion department, Elison said that when he started at the company almost four years ago, overtime was often required to keep up with production.
“We work a four-day, 10 hour per day week”, he said. “Before we started our training program, we were frequently working overtime on Fridays. Not any more. We are just as busy now as we were then, maybe even more busy, but we’re much more efficient.”