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Multivac Inc: Thermoforming packaging machine

Multivac launches the R 685 thermoforming packaging machine, which is designed for running extra-wide films.
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The R 685 is therefore ideally suited to producing particularly high volumes of sliced products. Its output is up to 480 packs per minute.

The R 685 is designed for running films with a width of 830 millimetres. The maximum film width, which could be run on Multivac's standard machines, has up to now been around 730 millimetres.

Investment in innovative technology
The R 685 is designed in particular for packing high volumes of sliced products, such as sliced sausage, cooked meats or cheese. Multivac has reacted to the demands of customers, who already use high capacity slicers or who are planning to use them. The packaging machine is designed to take the full volume of sliced products as they are fed directly from the slicer, and then to pack these at high speed. This has traditionally been solved by using packaging machines with a longer loading area and longer dies. This means however that the total length of the machine is increased, which requires in turn a larger space in the production hall. The other option is to use wider machines, which enable the additional space requirement in the production hall to be minimised. This is the case with the new R 685.

Double-spindle technology provides more power
Running films in these widths with existing technology has not been possible readily to date. Thanks to its many years of expertise in the area of thermoforming packaging, MULTIVAC has however now succeeded in making the technological breakthrough, both as regards the machine technology and the control technology.

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The extra-wide films are manufactured from the usual thermoplastic polymers, which are heated in the forming die. "There is normally the danger with films of this width, that they hang down in the machine", explains Natalie Schmid from Multivac. The R 685 has therefore a special support system with rails in the loading and discharge areas of the machine. The transport chain ensures that the film is kept stable while it is guided through to the sealing station. "Thanks to the action of the transport chain, the film remains under tension across the machine running direction, because it is held on the right and left sides like a rescue safety net, which is pulled in all four directions", adds Natalie Schmid.

The force required for the transport of these films is very high, particularly after the pack cavities have been filled. Multivac has therefore equipped the R 685 with a double drive system for the transport chain.

The weight of the dies on the R 685 is also significantly higher, due to the large formats of the dies, than is the case with standard machine models up to now. In order to be able to move the large masses and create sufficiently high closing forces, the R 685 has double-spindle lifting units for the forming and sealing stations. The R 685 has also been equipped with appropriate sensor technology, which monitors and supports the individual process stages in the machine.

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