How-to-Guide / Automated Assembly / Robotics Assembly

How To Use Robots to Optimize Product Manufacturing

March 5, 2014
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Benchmark in food

The food industry is turning to robotics solutions to optimize production.  Staubli’s  current range of SCARA and six-axis kinematics is more than capable of handling most any industry-specific requirement. Easy to clean, suitable for cleanroom environments and lubricated by food-grade oil, they are a match for the most stringent of hygiene specifications.

For many years now, Stäubli robots have served as a benchmark for operations in which not only the speed and precision of the robot are considered crucial but also factors such as particle emission, easy-to-clean surfaces and uninterrupted availability. These high-precision machines are therefore the robots of choice for a variety of deployments in the food industry.

Depending on the job for which the robot is intended, the customer simply selects an appropriate basic model and then decides on either a standard design or one of the many variants to suit the prevailing hygiene requirements. This may involve baking, pastry making, confectionery, meat and fish, dairy products, frozen foods, fruits and vegetables, filling jars or tins, dispensing, cutting, handling, labeling, packaging or palletizing: whatever the product or process might be, Stäubli is sure to offer the appropriate robot.

A special design for any production environment

The special designs include cleanroom, super cleanroom, food-grade oil and easy-to-clean HE variants. The big advantage working with a company that has ability range is that the Staubli SCARA models in the TS series as well as the articulated kinematics of the TX and RX series are already suitable for cleanroom environments in standard set-up.

The speedy SCARAs of the TS series equipped with gaiters comply with cleanroom class 6 (ISO 14644-1). These precision machines score excellent marks for their repeat accuracy of ±0.01 millimeters and are ideally suited for a variety of applications in the food industry, thanks to their smooth easy-to-clean surfaces, their cleanroom compatibility and their outstanding performance.

High speed ??for primary and secondary packaging

Further accolades are being showered on a new high-speed robot that has been mainly developed for sorting and packaging tasks in the food industry. The machine in question is the TP80 Fast Picker which, at over 200 picks per minute, is inspiring new ideas and strategies in the primary and secondary packaging of food.

Since its market launch, the TP80 Fast Picker has redefined the whole concept of a high-speed robot – the human eye finds it difficult to keep up with its extremely fast pick and place sequences. At the same time, the TP80 has been designed and built to offer  no compromise on reliability and precision. The four-axis machine can operate across large work spaces with a diameter of up to 1.6 meters and boasts an impressive repeatability of ±0.05 millimeters. Even after many thousands of hours of operation, there is no loss of precision. This kinematic design with its rigid structure virtually excludes wear resulting from continuous operation. The TP80 can optionally be operated with food-grade oil, which makes it ideal for packaging and sorting exposed food.

The new LINEmanager load-sharing software makes the TP80 into an all-round market-beating solution. The tool is designed for those highly complex sorting and packing tasks on a conveyor belt where nothing less than a 100% reliable solution for picking, sorting and packing on lines with multiple robots will suffice. The software package manages the total synchronization of the line by precisely coordinating the speed of all the robots and of the feed and discharge conveyors.

About Stäubli: Textile machinery, connectors and robotics

Stäubli is a mechatronics solution provider with three dedicated divisions: textile machinery, connectors and robotics. Employing more than 4,000 people, Stäubli is an international group based in Pfäffikon (Switzerland) with offices in 25 countries and agency representation in 50 more. 

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