China’s Changan Ford Builds Energy-Efficient Paint Shops

May 22, 2013
To expand capacity and meet new Chinese environmental regulations, general contractor Durr is installing two innovative paint shops, each with two top coat lines, at Changan Ford Automotive’s Chongqing and Hangzhou locations.

The energy-efficient features at the Chongqing and Hangzhou shops build on Ford’s proven 3-wet high solid painting process. This wet-in-wet process eliminates the need to use an oven between painting steps. In the final drying, heat is recovered from the oven’s exhaust to heat the supply air to the spray booth. Ford’s use of air recirculation in the automatic zones of the spray booth will also save energy.

Durr’s established RoDip M rotational dip coating system will be used in pretreatment and electro dipping. The rotational movement of the car body in the RoDip tank guarantees uniform cleaning and coating, providing the best possible corrosion protection. The space- and material-saving plant layout of the equipment’s design eliminates inclined sections at the entrance and exit of the dip tank. The resulting smaller bath volumes also save energy.

In Chongqing, the application of primer, base coat and clear coat for the car body shell will be handled by 36 EcoRP L033 painting robots. In addition, four EcoRS16 robots will apply the underbody protection. At the Hangzhou plant, 92 painting robots will be used for primer, base coat and clear coat application.  An additional eight EcoRS16 robots will apply the underbody and stone chipping protection.

The robots in both factories will be equipped with high-speed rotating atomizers. Durr is also installing an EcoClean exterior cleaning system for each paint line to prepare the car bodies for paint application.

The energy-saving plants for the production of Ford’s C or D models will become operational in September 2014 and January 2015. After commissioning, the Chongqing plant will be able to paint 68 vehicles per hour, while the Hongzhou plant’s capacity will be 60 vehicles painted per hour. Both paint shops expect to operate two shifts daily.

Durr is a mechanical and plant engineering group that provides production and environmental technology for the automotive, aircraft, machinery, chemical and pharmaceutical industries. Its four divisions include paint and assembly systems, application technology, measuring and process systems and clean technology systems. The company operates in 23 countries worldwide through 51 locations and has approximately 7,700 employees. Durr generated sales revenues of 2.4 billion Euros in 2012.