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With a strong focus on local manufacturing, SMC and HMPS recently partnered to design and develop a state-of-the-art packaging machine. In addition to a saving of 28% in energy consumption, all criteria for speed, accuracy and flexibility are met.
HMPS, an Australian machine builder, has partnered with SMC Corporation Australia New Zealand (ANZ) to design and customize a new bag unloading cell.
This machine is used to unload bags with pet food from trays and offers high speed in a small space. It was the first machine for this end user to be retrofitted to a robot with a specially designed vacuum head to unload bags of pet food from a retort.
For the first order, the customer was using an old compressor in their factory and requested an energy efficient solution that would not burden the compressor. Compressors are generally large CAPEX items and wanted to avoid replacing them. The new machine had to fit seamlessly into your current production to avoid unnecessary downtime, costs or drastic changes to the rest of the system.
Working closely together, SMC and HMPS worked together to deliver a ready-to-use solution. Although the specially designed vacuum head contained SMC's standard vacuum products (ZH vacuum ejector and ZP vacuum cup), it was designed to be unique, multifunctional and energy efficient.
The multi-bellow pads from SMC's vacuum range are designed for quick release and lower consumption. In the absence of a chamber, the vacuum response time is instantaneous and no air is delivered to a vacuum cup unless it is in use. As soon as the air shuts off, atmospheric pressure enters and the multiple bellows cushions expand like a spring to relieve pressure and tension and release the product immediately.
In addition, HMPS used SMC IP65 stainless steel products to withstand the wet and humid conditions in the factory while meeting the highest health and safety standards.
It's no secret that every millisecond in the packaging counts. With the unique combination of a new image processing system and the vacuum head from SMC, the customer enjoys less waste, faster speeds and a cycle time reduced by 15%.
The robot cell can process 576 products per minute and can process four different bag sizes and four different sauce contents. The sauce affects the shape of the product and the performance of the vacuum head. The vacuum cups used for this application adjust themselves to ensure constant suction power when required. The same technology can be applied to a range of bagged products such as soups, rice, cookies, etc.
SMC was founded over 60 years ago and operates in 83 countries. The company employs 19,000 people worldwide. The company has an R&D engineering team of 1,450 people and 8,200 sales people who are experts in their fields and who work closely with SMC's customers. In order to provide automation solutions for its diverse customer base, SMC offers more than 12,000 basic products with over 700,000 variations. SMC is the world's leading pneumatics supplier and has been voted one of the world's most innovative companies by leading business magazine Forbes for three consecutive years. FORBES Global 2000 is listed as one of the world's largest listed companies.
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