Gripping thin cardboard packaging without leaving marks

March 2019
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Thai brewery uses grippers with HNBR pads

Beerthai Co. Ltd. is a business unit of ThaiBev, the largest brewery group in Thailand. In their packaging line, robots pick up thin partitions and place them in packaging boxes for bottles. The grippers previously used left marks on the thin cardboard packaging. A more satisfactory solution was needed. FIPA recommended the GR04.100H gripper with replaceable HNBR soft contact pads.

Proven in the plastics industry

The HNBR gripper is normally used mainly in the plastics industry to demold workpieces out of the injection molding machine without scratching them. Such applications must provide high temperature resistance of up to 160°C, must be free of paint-wetting impairment substances (PWIS) and ensure gentle handling.

Thanks to their soft pads, the HNBR grippers are also impressive for applications outside of the plastics industry. After a test showed that the grippers did not leave any pressure marks on the thin cardboard, Beerthai approved the grippers for use in production.

The grippers have now proven themselves in the highly dynamic system, which has a cycle time of seven seconds and packs eight boxes per minute. Further packaging lines with FIPA grippers as End-of-Arm-Tooling on the robot are being planned.

The project developer from Beerthai summarises the advantages of the FIPA grippers with soft pads: “The soft HNBR pads ensure that the cardboard packaging is handled gently. Worn HNBR pads can be replaced without dismantling the grippers, saving us both time and money. In addition, the gripper is a proven standard product that is also available in Thailand.”

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