Acrylic and polycarbonate products are injection molded using state-of-the-art injection molding machines. At Criterion, we can mold a variety of plastic lens and dome concepts utilizing a wide variety of custom-blended resins to meet color and light loss requirements. Our injection molding machines are housed within clean, Class 100,000 molding and material storage rooms, and are operated by highly skilled and experienced operators who are specifically trained to mold optical-grade products.
Quality Control personnel continually monitor the injection molding process. Operators perform 100% in process optical and cosmetic inspections to ensure that our customers receive only the highest quality products. Optical inspection equipment and test processes are designed and performed to meet each product’s performance criteria.
The Criterion commitment to continuous research, advanced technology, and automation is the key to our continued success. As an example, we have recently co-developed a new optical grade of nylon that exhibits some of the best characteristics of both Acrylic and Polycarbonate polymers. Our goal is to provide our customers with continuous improvements in optical dome performance for their current and future product needs.
In-house molding of optical components, trim rings, concealment liners and other components is available. Criterion also works with suppliers around the world to help our customers meet the product design and price objectives. In many cases we can bring off shore molding in house and provide our customers with turn-key assemblies which provide improved quality and cost reductions.
At Criterion, we constantly analyze each step of our manufacturing process via value stream mapping and lean manufacturing methods. We perform cost base analysis on each product to determine when investments in automation or tooling upgrades (such as multi cavity tooling) can help drive down the unit costs.
We provide all of our customers with one-time NRE cost when designing and building tools and other related manufacturing fixtures. It is not unusual for contract molders to continually invoice for wear or broken parts on the tooling. We do not believe in that philosophy; we perform strictly monitored preventive maintenance to all tooling and related manufacturing fixtures and support equipment at no charge to our customers.