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Robots in complex automation solutions

Source:International Plastics News for     Date:2017-06-14
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WITTMANN PRIMUS 16 robot was introduced by the WITTMANN Group in early 2017. The new PRIMUS 16 robot, the forerunner of a brand-new series. WITTMANN robotics development typically involves the creation of complex and challenging automation solutions. This is clear from the new models of the W8 pro series, and also the software architectures of the R8 and R9 controls, which offer almost limitless extension. 
Wittmann Group - Primus 16
Primus 16 robot from Wittmann Group
With the PRIMUS 16 robot, WITTMANN introduces the PRIMUS robotic series that in the first instance will be used for less challenging pick & place applications. The advance towards miniaturization and the need for part separation without complex automation – these two aspects have nudged WITTMANN to develop this solution. The outcome is the PRIMUS 16, the first robot to fulfill these special requirements. With its payload of up to 5 kg, and with the WITTMANN absolute encoder regulator included, the PRIMUS 16 is very well prepared for these applications.  
The absolute encoder regulator features in all the smaller WITTMANN robots. The constantly available position feedback – undertaken without preceding referencing – considerably simplifies and quickens the run-up of the process. The mechanical layout and the geometry of the axes of the new device are highly oriented at the high-volume model W818. However, the PRIMUS 16 is especially designed for single removals. Modular design and construction is made possible for the PRIMUS 16. This leads to a much more efficient serial production of the new robot. From the user’s point of view, this leads to lowered cost, and for a system that is proved and tested a thousand-fold. 
The horizontal axis of the new robot has a stroke capability of 1,500 or 2,000 mm, a vertical axis of either 800, or 1,000, or 1,200 mm and a demolding axis of either 420 or 620 mm. Like all other WITTMANN servo robots, the PRIMUS 16 is programmed using the R8 TeachBox. QuickNew is an essential feature here. It stands for simplified and graphically supported programming. The SmartRemoval and EcoMode control functions come as a standard, as well as the data input via the TextEditor function  that already enjoys great popularity. 
Breakthrough system in palletizing
Proco Machinery Inc., a leading manufacturer of automation systems for the blow molding industry, has launched a breakthrough collaborative robotic Half-Cube Palletizer system that automatically palletizes blow molded containers with minimal operator involvement. Proco’s Half-Cube Palletizer is an advanced automation robotic system that is ideally suited for palletizing containers at a 50% cost reduction compared to conventional automation solutions.
“Proco’s new Half-Cube Palletizer automation technology was developed in response to customer demand,” said John McCormick, president of Proco Machinery. “Our new system has taken collaborative robotics to a new level, and fills an important need for packaging manufacturers.” The new automation technology blends this human-like collaborative robotic system together with Proco’s industry-leading expertise in the blow molding and packaging industries, according to Mr. McCormick.
Proco Machinery
Half-Cube Palletizer system automatically palletizes blow molded containers with minimal operator involvement. 
The Half-Cube Palletizer can be easily and quickly adapted to a variety of packaging and repetitive manufacturing situations working alongside existing workers or working independently. The system can be a totally integrated packaging module and is supplied with a six-axis collaborative robotic arm, infeed conveyor, pallet lift magazine and Slip sheet/Tray pick and place magazine on a common sub-frame which in turn is fitted with leveling pads and castor wheels. It has a maximum height of 55-in which is the half-cube configuration that is common to most U.S. blow molding operations.
The only manual operation occurs when an operator places the trays in the magazine. When palletizing is complete, an alarm sounds and the operator pulls the pallet out and places another pallet in the magazine. The Half-Cube Palletizer handles both slip sheet and tray configurations in 44 x 56 and 40 x 48 sizes.
The system can be moved into position, set up, and quickly put in production. The Half-Cube Palletizer provides maximum flexibility and efficiency and can be configured to pack all necks up or all necks down. In situations where a standard configuration does not suit a particular application, Proco’s engineering team can develop a custom designed system to provide an efficient, cost-effective solution.
The Half-Cube Palletizer is designed for easy portability. The complete system including integral in-feed conveyor can be easily moved from one location to another, ensuring maximum flexibility within a manufacturing setting. The innovative automation system does not require highly skilled workers or engineers to teach it new tasks. The Half-Cube Palletizer system is designed so that the maintenance staff with minimum initial training can operate and do changeovers easily. Alternatively, Proco also offers both on-site and off-site programming/training services at minimal cost.
Due to the sophisticated design of the Half-Cube system, complex safety guards are not normally required. However, Proco offers guard packages as optional equipment. It can work alongside existing workers thereby making integration into the existing workplace environment easy and cost effective. Proco Machinery offers the new Half-Cube Palletizer globally.
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