If you’re currently using traditional case packers or adding your first automated tray or case packing solution, make sure to weigh the benefits of a new robotic pick and place cell.
Traditional case packers are still the go-to automated solution when you need to pack heavy products into rigid containers, but robotic alternatives are becoming more popular as packaging costs, customer demand and sustainability initiatives dictate lighter, more flexible alternatives.
While there’s room in the market for both traditional and robotic case packing equipment, let’s look deeper into the advantages of modular robotic options.
Robotic Case Packing Advantages
Packing your trays and cases with a pick and place robot means you can move a lot more product through the line to be palletized and shipped. Thus, responding to increased retail demand or a product line changeover just got easier.
When you have uniquely shaped, flexible or light products to manipulate, you’ll want to look at robotic applications. Not only can you ensure product and packaging integrity, but you can also precisely control the arrangement and increase retail marketability. Complex or varying pack patterns can be easily programmed into a robot as well.
When facility floor space is at a premium or you need to fit your new machine into an existing packaging line, a small footprint is a must. Robotic pick and place cells take up much less space than traditional case packers because they can move in two directions along an axis whereas traditional machines operate based on defined steps proceeding one way.
Being compact helps make it modular but there’s more to it. A compact robotic cell can be dropped into almost any product line without the need to design a whole new all-in-one system. With their easy changeover features, you can run multiple product lines through one robotic module and simply reprogram it on the fly. Done.
There’s rarely a misstep when a robot is involved. Programmed to be accurate and built to be agile, you can expect the same precise placement and delicate handling every time. The results are always the same until you decide to change the program.
Please don’t misunderstand us though, there’s nothing wrong with traditional mechanical packing machines. We make some of the best on the market. They do their job on a heavier, rigid product just fine.
And some lightweight packaging applications can be performed without robotics just as well too, such as simpler case packing for wholesale. But while traditional case packers are precise enough to mechanically drop or push your product into a case or tray, there is no comparison to robotic product placement.
And the advantages become even more obvious when you compare a robotic pick and place option to a fully manual approach. If you are still using your staff to pack your trays and cases, you’re also likely experiencing higher safety and liability costs.
Our Robotic Case Packing Options
We design and deploy the two most flexible case packing options for our clients – the gantry robot and the delta robot.
Our Gantry Robot with X, Y, Z-axis functionality is perfect for your cans, bottles, jars, cartons and similar products.
Our Delta Robot is the packing solution for your more flexible bags and packages.
While some manufacturers use selective compliance articulated robot arms (SCARA) in their modular cells, we chose to develop more articulate gantry and delta options that offer more flexibility for varying case and product configurations.
Both of our gantry and delta robotic options provide gentle product handling by either vacuum or mechanical means, assuring product integrity and consistent tray and case packing. And we can configure either option to accommodate a wide variety of case/tray sizes and pack patterns.
These modular pick & place cells can fit into any existing production line or be integrated as part of a complete packaging solution to include automatic case erecting, tray forming, sealing and robotic palletizing.
(As a side note, we did deploy SCARA robotics in our palletizer. It fits in nicely with any system right after the robotic pick and place cell and case sealer!)
Learn more about our top load robotic pick and place cells and other end-of-line solutions today and then let us know how we can help you integrate these into your facility.
We invite you to come to see our solutions in action. We’d love to show you all our primary, secondary and end-of-line solutions to fully automate your product packaging line. Just click the Schedule a Free Demo button at the bottom of any page!