Raising productivity and protecting worker health through ABB RobotPacking 60,000 plastic bottles a day by hand was taking a high toll in labor costs and operator health for an Australian plastics company. A single ABB robot not only solved the problem, it increased productivity by up to 40 percent.
Power Plastics is a Sydney-based manufacturer of plastic bottles and containers for customers in the food, pharmaceuticals, personal care, househould and industrial segments.
Skyrocketing raw material prices and the operational and human costs of hand-packing 60,000 bottles a day were the key reasons behind the company's decision to switch from manual to robot-based production in its labor-intensive squeezable bottle line.
The final decision to automate was made after a particularly bad year with workers' compensation claims from RSI (repetitive strain injury).
Prior to the installation of the ABB robot, two operators spent each shift putting the bottles into cardboard boxes, sealing the boxes and stacking them on pallets. Now a single ABB IRB 4400L robot, with a 2.43 meter reach and a 30kg payload, picks up eight to ten bottles at a time (depending on bottle size) from two production lines. A single operator is required to seal the boxes and palletize them.
COMPRESSION BLOW FORMING PROCESS NOW IN COMMERCIAL PRODUCTIONClose Up: Blow Molding
By Matthew H. Naitove, Executive Editor
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From: Plastics Technology
Issue: July 2012
Expectations of higher productivity, improved quality, and energy savings for a novel blow molding process are now being realized in commercial production at Amcor Rigid Plastics in Youngsville, N.C.
Based in Ann Arbor, Mich., Amcor (amcor.com) is producing 75-cc HDPE pharmaceutical bottles for one customer and also plans stock bottles of 150 and 300 cc. The machine is suitable for the pharmaceutical packaging range of 60 to 300 cc. “For the pharmaceutical industry, compression blow forming is one of the most significant technological developments for rigid packaging in decades. It’s a game-changer for an industry that demands risk-free performance,
CBF is said to have several advantages over injection-blow molding (IBM) of small HDPE bottles:
Amcor says the 12-station CBF machine can run at up to 6000 bottles/hr and a 20-station model (coming later this year) could produce 10,000/hr, depending on bottle size and weight. Productivity is enhanced by the continuous rotary motion of the cam-operated process, eliminating station-to-station indexing time.
Plastics manufacturer improves safety and ergonomics while increasing productivity with the Motion Controls Robotics “Robotic SUBTA”
A national manufacturer of stock and custom plastic packaging solutions for the food packaging, chemical, automotive and household industries faced the challenge of improving its safety and ergonomics associated with its manual system of unloading its Nissei Bottle Making Machine at its manufacturing facility.
Motion Controls Robotics’ created the Robotic SUBTA system, a pre-engineered robotic system designed for PET blow-molded bottle handling. The system uses different robotic units depending on the type of machine that is being unloaded. The Robotic SUBTA system grabs and sets the bottles on a conveyor, standing up, acting as a takeaway unit. The system provides increased throughput due to high reliability and
uptime and cycle times faster than most mold machine rates. The Robotic SUBTA system also requires a minimum of floor space, a high priced commodity in a manufacturing facility.