Complete Packaging System for Bottle Caps
How to handle the packaging of plastic caps depends on the size of the closures and the quantity to be packaged. In general, plastic caps can be packaged in bags, boxes or blisters.
What we are going to analyse is a discharging, conveying, bagging and case packing system, customised to our customer's needs.
The process starts with the raw material intake and then moves on to transport, packing, placing the bags in the boxes, palletising and finally wrapping the pallet.
Product unloading system
The unloading system is fully automatic, and custom-designed for large boxes.
The caps arrive in octabins at the plant. Then they are unloaded into a large hopper, precisely designed for receiving the caps. A fixed bucket elevator then transports them to the vertical packaging machine.
But it is precisely the way in which they are unloaded that makes this unloading system, which we created specifically according to our customer's requirements, unique.
The special feature of this system is that it performs special movements to facilitate product unloading. In fact, it does not simply raise the octabin towards the bucket elevator, but tilts it to facilitate the gradual unloading of the caps.
Once the first tipping is complete, the operation is repeated several times to also unload the caps that remain in the bottom of the container.
In this system, the dosing system has been designed to save space vertically by placing it on the floor instead of on top of the packaging machine (as is customary).
This ensures that:
After being unloaded, the product is received by a custom-made hopper for receiving the octabin.
It is then loaded towards the vertical packaging machine by a fixed bucket elevator, which is used to transport the product from the unloading station to the packaging station.
The fixed bucket elevator is designed so that each individual cup carries the entire contents of a bag, to facilitate a smooth process. For this reason, fixed buckets with a capacity of 50 litres were chosen. The bucket elevator is made of Aisi 304 stainless steel, as are the parts in contact with the product.
MF 58 Vertical Packaging Machine
The vertical packaging machine packs products in bags, positioned perpendicularly to the ground. The machine, also called VFFS, works from a reel of heat-sealable film, which is then cut to create the desired bag shape. Vertical packaging machines can produce pillow bags or gusseted bags by means of special devices. This type of machinery is widely used in the industrial automation industry because it is fast, accurate and allows a significant reduction in labour costs.
The most suitable machine for this cap packaging system is the MF 58 vertical packaging machine. Bottle caps are a flowable product with a relatively low unit weight. The bags to be packed weigh between 5 and 7 KG, depending on the type of beverage cap.
The bags that come out, in this case, are pillow bags with side gussets with three seals, two horizontal and one vertical. If required by the customer, our VFFS can also form bags with four seals.
Our vertical packaging machines can be operated by PLC touchscreen panels.
If required, they can be equipped with several forming tubes to enable quick and easy format changes.
Pick and Place Robot and Case packing Machine
Once the bags leave the packaging machine, they are placed in boxes. Each box contains two bags. We used a pick-and-place automation robot and our MF CUBE carton-packing machine to create and fill the boxes.
The pick-and-place robot positions the bags inside the boxes, creating a bag-in-box system. It consists of a mechanical arm that lifts the bags by means of a suction system and vacuum creation.
The boxes are formed by the carton boxing machine, which seals the underside with adhesive tape and transports them to the filling station. If required, the closure could also be reinforced with hot melt glue. To facilitate filling, a vibration system was applied to the bottom of the box.
The boxes created by this model of case packer are of the American type, with top loading.
After being filled with the two bags, they are closed at the top and transported to the palletising station via automatic roller conveyors.
The palletiser is a widely used machine in industrial automation, allowing bags or boxes to be placed into pallets precisely and quickly. Industrial robotics makes it possible to avoid human errors and to significantly save time and labour costs, thereby increasing the optimisation of the production process.
In this case, the palletising system created is a Cartesian type with a gripper specially designed for gripping boxes.
The pallet that is created is 2.6 metres high and consists of six layers of four boxes each.
The robotic palletiser chosen for this installation is the MF PCA SMART, equipped with an automatic pallet magazine.
Automatic Pallet Wrapper
To protect the palletised products, they are wrapped with stretch film.
This ensures that the products are not damaged by impacts or atmospheric agents and that the pallet retains its shape.
In this plant, the pallet is particularly high and the addition of a wrapper was practically unavoidable.
The wrapping system chosen is also fully automatic, it is the MF WRAP 35 with a turntable.
To complete the wrapping and achieve more excellent protection we also added a top sheet application device.
To improve the end result, we added a cutting unit and a device for adhering the final flap of stretch film to the side of the pallet. In this, as in all other machines, PLC control systems are incorporated. All the machines are connected by automatic roller conveyors and belts to allow the transport of bags, boxes and pallets.
Once the plant has been tested and commissioned, our remote assistance service is available 24/7 to solve any problems with the machinery.
The entire packaging plant is prepared for production data exchange and Industry 4.0 implementation.
In addition, during installation, assembly and testing at the customer's facility, we offer staff training to make full use of the packaging system's functions.
The advantages of choosing an MF TECNO packaging system
By choosing MF TECNO you are choosing a solid and reliable company that produces all the components of a packaging system in-house. Our strategy is the result of study over the years and constant investment in Research and Development. We have chosen to work in this way in order to guarantee our customers perfect communication of a plant's machinery.
In addition, we want to offer the best possible after-sales service, which would not be possible if we had to work on machinery produced by other companies.
Watch this plant in action in the video below.
Ask for a quotation, and we will contact you within one business day.