Thursday, June 28, 2007
 
Schneider Packaging Wins Awards for Robotic Case Packer and Palletizer Cell
 
The system uses a FANUC Robotics R-2000iB robot

Schneider Packaging Equipment’s robotic case packer/palletizer is combined with a Schneider rotary cartoner in a complete end-of-line packaging system. Schneider provides a system that can automate end-of-line processes for the ultimate flexibility in packaging.  This system received Control Engineering’s 2006 Extreme Machine Award, as well as being a part of PMT’s 2006 Packaging Line Of The Year.

 

Schneider Packaging was selected for the Extreme Machine competition by the readers of Control Engineering Magazine.  Readers were looking for a machine that demonstrated a combination of utility, precision, and practicality.  The contest was sponsored by Control Engineering Magazine, Design News Magazine and Rockwell Automation 

 

This system was also a part of PMT’s 2006 Packaging Line Of The Year.  Parameters that PMT used for judging the entries included the line’s contribution to the customer’s long-term business plan, the level of innovation of the design, the use of floorspace, and the project’s on-time/on budget performance. 

 

Using the ControLogix controller to integrate all components, cartons are erected and loaded with product.  Cartons are then fed to the robot cell where cases are automatically erected, then loaded with cartons, sealed, then labeled, and palletized in a single robotic cell.

Occupying only 300 square feet, the machine’s configuration improves productivity while simplifying the packaging process.  Operators stack carton and case blanks and supply the labeler, all from outside the guarding enclosures.  Product is conveyed in two lanes, as two side-by-side timing screws count the appropriate number of product for a carton and feed them into a hopper.  A Rockwell Automation Ultra-3000 servo with MPL motors operates each timing screw.  The machine erects a carton and deposits a full hopper of product into the carton. 

The machine applies hot-melt glue to seal the carton and presents it to a laser date coder and a label applicator.  The carton then travels down a very short conveyor to the combination robotic case packer and palletizer. 

The cartons are accumulated in the proper pattern for a case.  A fully integrated case erector opens a case blank so that a FANUC Robotics R-2000iB robot can lift a layer of cartons and place it into the case, repeating the step if the pack pattern requires more than one layer.  The case is then sealed with hot-melt glue.

The same robot then picks the case up and presents it to the labeler.  The entire labeler resides outside the safety enclosure, permitting operators to service and supply it without shutting down the line.  The robot presents a side for labeling, then turns the case and presents it again if another label is required, and places the case in the correct location on the pallet.

The operator interacts with the robot using a touch-screen interface on the machine control panel, eliminating the need for lengthy technical training. 

Schneider is an Authorized Systems Integrator for FANUC Robotics, and manufactures a complete line of case packers, tray packers, and case erectors along with robotic palletizing systems.  Schneider offers a variety of ancillary equipment such as cartoners, conveyors, pallet dispensers, shuttle cars, and elevators that can easily be integrated with coding/labeling equipment, product code scanners, weight checking, and stretch or shrink wrapping equipment to provide a complete system solution.  Some of their specialty markets include the food, beverage, paper, replication, industrial, and personal care industries.