Emerging from the filler enclosure, wine bottles are conveyed through a Heuft (Downers Grove, IL) detection unit that uses a combination of photocells and high-frequency signals to check for cork presence, cork breakage, and improper fill height.
At Janes’ Concord, Ontario, Canada plant, this carton sealer from Bradma-Lake is set up on a right angle to save space. The top flap is closed and sealed with hot melt adhesive dispensed by a Nordson hot-melt system as the carton conveys along the first conveyor “leg.” At the end of this leg, a stationary bar pushes the carton 90° along the second leg to seal the carton’s sides.
Filled and opened cartons pass through the infeed of a carton closer from Brandman-Lake. As they do so, the carton’s upright top flap contacts a stationary finger-like device, causing the flap to descend down around the carton base.
Two cases are indexed into position and are pneumatically tilted away from the robot to facilitate loading. After the cases are half filled by the Wexxar machine, with 16-oz cartons, a corrugated divider is inserted before additional rows are loaded to complete the cases. The robot picks and places these cartons at a rate of 60/min.
To ensure a uniform distribution of heat to produce an attractive, consistent shrink package, Lantech (Louisville, KY) introduced a “soft convection” shrink tunnel designed to eliminate dog ears and wrinkles.
With four patents pending, the new space-saving Infinity™ accumulator from Garvey Corp. (Blue Anchor, NJ) features a built-in combiner that can be configured as a single-file outfeed, multiple-lane outfeed, or en mass outfeed.
FP International's (Redwood City, CA) Novus C air cushion packaging system inflates preconfigured, low-density polyethylene film in four different air cushion shapes at speeds to 70 fpm. The four different cushion configurations can be used for void fill, blocking and bracing, corner cushioning, or as a replacement for traditional bubble material. The preconfigured film is stored deflated on a roll, saving space compared to premade air cushions and bubble packaging.
BluePrint Automation (Colonial Heights, VA) demonstrated a servo-driven, robotic top-loading machine packing stand-up drink pouches into a corrugated display case at speeds of about 450 pouches/min, though the manufacturer says the machine can reach speeds to 500 pouches/min. Applications include liquid drink pouches and retortable pouches such as pet food. Accommodates multiple pack sizes, product sizes, and carton configurations. Manufacturer claims no changeover is required between varying products or pack configurations.
Shanklin (Ayer, MA), part of the Shrink Packaging Div. of Sealed Air Corp., revealed its patent-pending EZ Tab System that provides easy opening for shrink-wrapped, heat-sealed products. The booth demonstrated the pressure-sensitive tabs, supplied in rolls and applied to a clear film web used to wrap whole potatoes. The film is first punched in the area where the tab goes. EZ Tabs are suitable for CDs and other hard-to-open packages.