Zero Contact Automatic Product Handling

monkhill confectioneryThe contact-less feeder is ideal for automatically loading delicate or sticky products that must not come into contact with each other. Randomly supplied product is formed into an ordered and equally gapped queue, synchronized with the packing machine and then positioned into the flowrapper infeed conveyor. This is a difficult task which, to do successfully, requires complex predictive software and high bandwidth controllers.

The picture above shows a nougat being packed at 400 packs/min. When first produced nougat is incredibly sticky and it will literally stick to a vertical surface or melt back into one if two pieces contact each other. By utilising some existing machinery and installing all new internals and software we supplied a very cost effective solution. This suited Cadbury's who supplied some mechanical engineering input themselves and are familiar with our approach to project management. Such close cooperation with our customers is normal for us and gives added flexibility when managing such projects.

flapjack packingThe contact-less 'MultiFeed' system consists of at least five servo driven high speed positioning conveyors, more if the input flow is particularly random. They are controlled by a high speed motion controller and highly optimised software algorithms. It is also common for us to extend such systems to satisfy additional requirements such as a change in the product orientation, grouping and collating, inspection and reject systems, etc. Such an approach gives a common user interface and simple automatic control of complex lines.

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