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Plant manufacturer Dürr is supporting its customer, automotive manufacturer Audi, in the construction of a resource-saving paint shop in Mexico. As the general contractor, Dürr will build what is said to become one of the world’s most environmentally friendly paint shops at the site in San José Chiapa. Commissioned December, 2013, and dubbed the Eco+Paintshop, the shop will feature reduced water, energy and materials use.
Dürr is responsible for ensuring that all of the shop's interfaces and processes will be sustainable and efficient, from pretreatment to oven exhaust. The Ecopaint RoDip rotational dip painting system is used during pretreatment via electro-coating (EC) and eliminates entry and exit inclines as the car body is rotated in the baths. Less water, fewer chemicals and lower power are necessary for bath conditioning because of smaller volumes and shorter dip baths.
Automation will feature highly in the Eco+Paintshop. Ten EcoRS16 robots will perform underbody and seam sealing. Armed with EcoBell3 high-speed rotary atomizers, 36 EcoRP L133 robots will be responsible for interior and exterior painting in the primer and top coat line. The atomizers provide 10-second color changes for base coats, with 10 mL to 15 mL of paint loss. For special colors, the shop will use the EcoSupply P, which uses the pigging procedure for efficient material use. Alongside the painting robots, an additional 24 handling robots will hold doors and hoods open during interior painting.
Overspray will be separated by the EcoDryScrubber energy-efficient paint booth system. This dry separation of the overspray forgoes water and chemicals completely, and can be powered by 90-percent recirculated air. It is said to save up to 60 percent of energy in the paint booth, because less air conditioning is needed.
The shop's straight-through ovens are designed for complex car body structures and will feature low exhaust gas temperatures. Oven exhaust will be purified by the Ecopure TAR integrated oxidation system and then recovered to be used again for thermal heating. The air purification system will also clean any remaining exhaust air from the spray booths. According to Dürr, this combination of exhaust and air purification systems will reduce power consumption by as much as 80 percent and solvent emissions by as much as 90 percent.
Audi's Q5 models are planned to begin rolling out from the site by mid-2016.