PROJECT SPOTLIGHT

Automated Case Packing Machine

Project summary

MWES provided this firm with a fully automated robotic case-packing machine for a cheese product manufacturer.

The Challenge

Manual case packing is a tedious and labor-intensive operation, and with labor shortages, difficult to find enough workers to keep throughput steady. This firm contracted MWES to automate that entire operation with a machine that had to be flexible enough to run different batches, which may have different bag and box sizes, along with different stacks and configurations.

The Solution

MWES provided our customer with a fully automated robotic case packing machine that would receive the product and the assembled cases on two separate infeed conveyors and three Delta robots pick and pack the product into the cases. The entire machine is a one-piece custom-built support structure that provides rigid mounting for the robots, controllers and conveyors, allowing for easy installation into our customer’s facility. This fully integrated system provides for quick startup and integration into the existing production equipment.

An adjustable box conveyor is utilized in the machine to accommodate the various box dimensions. The box width adjustment is completed by the operator using a simple hand crank on the outside of the system. The three FANUC M3iA/6S 4-Axis Delta robots with R30iB Plus Controllers were provided with Zones Venturi vacuum end-of-arm tools (EOATs) which allow the robots to pick and place a wide range of product sizes and weights.

The machine’s three Delta robots run FANUC iR PickTool software which makes it quick and easy for the customer to add new product configurations at a later date. Additionally, an encoder tracking system is used on both the produce bag and the box conveyors. The encoder tracking system provides real-time position data of the bag and box as they travel through the system, which allows the robots to pick and place without stopping the conveyors. Lastly, an Allen-Bradley PLC and PanelView are also part of the system for the operator to run and track the operation from.

Impact to the Customer

The case packer that MWES provided this firm with reduced labor costs by automating the process in place of hand packing the bags into boxes. Additionally, by replacing the human element, work loss is greatly reduced by the repetitive nature of the task in addition to the automation of manual labor. The final automated machine case packs the bags into boxes at 160 pieces per hour. 

Midwest Engineered Systems has a wide range of experience in building case-packing machines. If you want to improve your case packing throughput, we have the knowledge and experience to make the project successful.

Contact us to learn how Midwest Engineered Systems can automate even your most complex and challenging operations today!

Innovation Through Automation

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