CKF Systems install Standard Robot Palletising cell in leading European food group, Vandemoortele


CKF’s latest standard robotic palletising system is now operational at Vandemoortele – the European food group that manufactures and sells high quality food products.

The new standard palletiser is one in a range of Standard Palletising cells offered by CKF and has been installed in the company’s Worcester plant. CKF’s range of Standard Palletising cells are quick to install, easy to use, economic and flexible, offering the ability to be reconfigured and expanded.

This low-cost simple palletising system is based on the Yaskawa PL80 robot and CKF’s standard 24 Vdc ‘CRC’ case conveyor system.

The robot cell has been designed so it can be mechanically located and installed with minimal interruption to production due to the innovative plinth that allows the robot and all ancillary elements to be installed and tied back to the main system structure.
The palletising system has been produced with the Yaskawa Pallet Solver software at its core which allows for fast commissioning and flexibility to introduce new pallet patterns as and when required with minimal specialist training. Suitably familiar operators / site engineers will be able to create new pallet patterns on the local HMI screen.

The robot system has been installed with a simple, single zone vacuum gripper that will allow the picking and placing of single cases, multiple cases, sturdy bags or flow wrapped packs of product in a single movement. Designed with second life in mind, the CKF palletising system can easily be relocated and repurposed with minimal modifications. 

Cases are fed to the system from the production floor directly above the system, via decline belt and spiral conveyors manufactured and installed by CKF. Once on the ground floor the cases are handled on CKF’s inhouse 24Vdc CRC conveyor system which allows the additional functionality of a manual feed and an ebb and flow buffer area. When pallets are exchanged, the robot must stop for safety, cases are buffered on the Zero Pressure Accumulation (ZPA) system. The cases are then fed back into the palletiser along with the cases from production, allowing pallets to be exchanged without affecting production. 

Vandemoortele are currently utilising the system on their pastry products line where it handles a throughput of up to 20 cases per minute with a variety of case sizes and weights.

Gareth Manton, Vandemoortele, said: “We are delighted with the standard end of line robotic palletising cell installed by CKF which has already allowed us to increase throughput and streamline our operations. The installation was quick, smooth and to an extremely high standard. Our investment will serve us for many years as this solution can easily be repurposed if we decide to upgrade or change our operations. It has allowed us to remove repetitive manual handling and reallocate valuable personnel to more interesting tasks.”

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