PROJECT SPOTLIGHT

Robotic Palletizing & Automated Guided Vehicle

Project summary

MWES provided this firm with a track-mounted robotic palletizing system that includes a pallet-handling AGV and automated pallet dispensers.

The Challenge

Having enough workers on hand to handle a palletizing process is a challenge during a labor shortage. To keep up with throughput this firm contracted Midwest Engineered Systems to integrate an automated solution that would transfer cases from multiple infeed conveyors and palletize them.

The Solution

MWES integrated a fully automated track-mounted robotic material handling system for palletizing cases of products. The automation system can move 20 cases per minute from several infeed conveyors. Additionally, the system performs the stretch wrapping operation and utilizes an AGV forklift that handles placing empty pallets in the staging areas and removes full pallets at 10 pallet loads per hour. Additionally, empty pallets are stored in automated pallet dispensers where the AGV can pull from.

  • Fanuc Robot – The robot system includes an R-2000iB Robot with a 165 kg load capacity and 2.655 m reach, two auxiliary servo motors and drives, material handling package software and a robot cable solution from the 7th axis to the end effector
  • Dynamic Servo Actuated End Effector – Allows for active adjustment between picks for various box sizes, has an active vacuum control for paired cup sets to allow combinations of box placement, offsets riser for proper end effector elevation, includes valves, sensor connector banks, and flow sensors – all optimized for the specified Fanuc robot automation systems
  • Automated Guided Vehicle (AGV) Forklift – MWES provided integration services to design, install and start up the SmartCart single truck forklift system, navigation system, vehicle controller, I/O controller, safety sensors and interfaces, and miscellaneous materials necessary to integrate AGV system components.
  • Pallet Locator Weldments – Welded and painted pallet locators supported the loads, provided clearance for the AGV to index under the loads and primed and painted surface finish.
  • Robot Floortrack – Heavy rails transport the Fanuc robot along the conveyors and pallet locations, E-chain assembly, machine tool grade guideway and power train.
  • Fourteen Motor Driven Roller Infeed Conveyor – Skewed roller configuration with side pusher assembly for two-zone capabilities.
  • Fourteen Pneumatic Side Pusher Assemblies – each incoming box conveyor has two pushers, one pusher traps the boxes, separating a gap with the boxes to be picked and another side pusher moves the boxes against the side rail for alignment.
  • Two MWES Pallet Dispensers – The device provides automatic dispensing of white pallets with a storage capacity of twenty pallets each
  • PLC and HMI Touchscreen Display – An Allen-Bradley ControlLogix processor and an Allen-Bradley Panelview 1000+ color display were integrated into the factory automation system, the components display the cell status, error codes, and manual operations, as well as an I/O debug screen – all in easy to read displays.

Impact to the Customer

The system MWES provided this customer afforded them a number of improvements in their palletizing operation. Such as, the automation system produced savings on labor for stacking pallets and it created a more consistent quality of stacked pallets. Residually the MWES system reduced work injuries from the lifting of empty pallets. In the end, the Fanuc robot automation-based manufacturing system improved overall customer manufacturing operations.

Midwest Engineered Systems has a wide range of experience in building robotic palletizing systems. If you’re looking to improve your palletizing throughput, we have the knowledge and experience to make the project a success.

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

Innovation Through Automation

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