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Suzanne Zampaloni points out the platen sealing test stand, where in-depth sealing testing and analysis provides insights for enhanced performance on new product development.

[Appleton, WI – March 1, 2022]

CMD’s Advanced Engineering Analytics (AEA) Lab was opened in 2018 with the objective of minimizing customer risk with accurate testing of materials, processes, and equipment components.


The lab includes process and testing equipment for development of pouch, converting, and CNG machinery. Testing equipment includes: a platen test stand for concept testing; evaluation test stand for analyzing equipment reliability; CMD 760-SUP Test Module for testing new concepts; legacy/cross seal test stand providing promising alternatives; and a new test stand for ultrasonic sample testing.

Other specialized equipment includes a pneumatic seal tester, water bath leak detector, CMD prototype cross sealer, Instron pull tester, and other testing equipment.

Project Engineer Suzanne Zampaloni explains the ultra-sonic sealing equipment.

The lab is undergoing improvements that include a structured, 5S/7S process and centralized access to technical data that will enhance response time and overall efficiency.

“The 5S/7S process will transform the lab into a more universally-useable resource,” says Suzanne Zampaloni, CMD Project Engineer heading up the lab improvements. “This will increase accessibility and improve efficiency in response to customer needs.”

As a member of CMD’s product development group, Zampaloni has keen interest and enthusiasm for the capabilities of the lab and the enhanced deliverables the improvements will offer.

“For CMD, the test equipment and technical data analysis allows us to simulate and test components and processes, so it is quicker and easier to develop machinery to meet customer expectations –ahead of the actual machine build.”

AEA Lab Background

Operating from a 2,400 sq. ft. facility on the 126,000 sq. ft. CMD campus in Appleton, WI, the AEA Lab utilizes technical experts, established metrics, technology and equipment to analyze data and provide new product development for CMD customers. Customers can bring raw materials and film with specifications to CMD for technical experts to test, and receive concise, concrete data to apply to their packaging processes.

Defining component life and performance using analytical data is important to meeting customer expectations. It provides manufacturers with clear information on when to update parts, change maintenance cycles or create service kits to extend the life of components. With the AEA Lab, CMD can help define scheduled maintenance based on performance data from actual run conditions. This can maximize up time and machine performance throughout the service life of components.

The equipment used in the AEA Lab allows for detailed analytics of packaging applications such as sealing ability, durability of machine wear parts, component capabilities and strength, materials application, and process validation utilizing a clear and scientific approach.

The Value of Data

Throughout the testing process, CMD archives all technical data. This constitutes a huge body of information. Easy and reliable access to this data is imperative for analysis and development purposes.

With the AEA Lab’s data tracking, statistical analytics, clear and concise documentation and verified results, customers can test new product designs and validate specific performance criteria.

This builds customer confidence and leads to improved process management, by allowing advanced testing of new modules prior to final machine build, which reduces commercialization risk. It can also accelerate the project timeline, and market launch, thereby offering a competitive advantage.

While the data has always been available in a central data base, Zampaloni and her colleagues have improved the process by enhancing searchability and by locating it on an intranet that also provides an efficient method to request an AEA service.

“The new process allows for quick results for test data, calculations, calculators, and simulations (FEA, Flow)” says Zampaloni, noting that a scientific approach and proper organization of the database results in easier retrieval of test results– a definite plus for efficiency.”Team and individual training for utilizing the data base and lab equipment is provided for CMD personnel.

Capabilities and Deliverables

Utilizing the AEA Lab, CMD can:

  • · Vet key processes prior to customer install
  • · Advise customers on best processes for best quality products
  • · Offer specific instructions on how to operate, maintain and service CMD equipment
  • · Can help define maintenance intervals
  • · Confirm reliability and durability with life testing on key components
  • · Test raw material, film and machine process compatibility
  • · Accelerate product development reduce risk of premature failure and improve process management

Customers can come to CMD for pouch and bag samples and materials testing where engineering expertise and specialized equipment will be utilized. A variety of sealing methods are available, including heat sealing, platen sealing, nichrome wire impulse sealing, and ultrasonic sealing.

“For the development of new materials, machineability testing on real-life production processes, the collection of performance data and the ability to analyze the data to confirm success is a real advantage for customers,” says CMD Product Line Manager for Pouch and Intermittent Bag Equipment, Scott Fuller.

“Our main purpose with the AEA lab is to answer questions via producing samples, running special equipment configurations, and in general providing research and development for internal and external customers,” says Zampaloni.

The in-depth analytics provided by the AEA lab allows CMD to design long-lasting, high-performance equipment with the latest technology, that provides good return on investment.


CMD is a technology-driven innovator of converting machinery and automation for plastic bags and pouch packaging for the medical, food and shipping industries. CMD also designs and manufactures quality fueling equipment for the CNG (compressed natural gas) industry. Custom and stock machinery, parts, upgrade kits, and engineering services are offered in the Americas, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East.

CMD is known for advancing technology that offers real value to customers. The firm’s inventions include: high-speed, continuous-motion bag sealing and drawtape trash bag converting; overlap bag winding for one-at-a-time dispensing of bags-on-a-roll; and Intelligent Sealing for verifiable pouch quality. All equipment is built in the U.S; and designed for durability and ease of operation. CMD employs 200 dedicated professionals and operates from a 126,000 sq. ft. campus focused on technology development and manufacturing in Appleton, Wisconsin USA.

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