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Factory Automation Advancements for CPGs

At PACK EXPO Las Vegas, Bosch Rexroth showcased developments in control systems, conveyance, and more for packaging machinery.

Screenshot 2023 10 04 At 12 21 49 Pm

Bosch Rexroth unveiled several innovations that promise to enhance efficiency and productivity.

Discussing the company’s new ctrlX AUTOMATION platform, Sean Spees, market segment manager for CPG, explained that the system allows for seamless communication between machines, enabling real-time data retrieval from different points in the production line. It offers a non-proprietary, Linux-based approach based on apps, allowing users to tailor the platform to their specific needs.

On display was a three-axis ctrlX DRIVE linked to a ctrlX CORE industrial PC running in real-time. Other components, such as ctrlX IO, ctrlX HMI and the MS2N synchronous motor, are also included. ctrlX CORE supports modern languages for today’s industrial machinery, such as Java, Python and Node Red, plus many other application-appropriate languages.

“The new feature we have at the show is one that partners here are running, our ctrlX AUTOMATION platform—there are machines elsewhere on the show floor, in different halls at PACK EXPO that we’re communicating with at our booth through wifi and the cloud,” said Spees. “We're able to pull data from their machine as it's running and can get real-time machine updates. This is part of the ‘smart phone of automation’ which is monitored from either a phone, laptop or tablet.”

The technology can be adapted to any production process, including packaged goods, EV batteries, semiconductors, medical, solar, aerospace, and more. Its ability to maximize floor space is particularly important with plant real estate at a premium.

Advances in conveying

Bosch Rexroth featured its ctrlX AUTOMATION-powered, multi-tech demo that consists of a VarioFlow plus conveyor system that delivers high accuracy with speed. On display was a three-axis ctrlX DRIVE linked to a ctrlX CORE running in real-time. Other components, such as ctrlX IO, ctrlX HMI and the MS2N synchronous motor, are also included. ctrlX CORE supports modern languages for today’s industrial machinery, such as Java, Python and Node Red, plus many other application-appropriate languages.

Visitors also got a sneak peak at the T7, a new chain platform for larger chain widths (160 to 320 millimeter) powered by the modular VarioFlow plus, a high-performance, versatile plastic chain conveyor system with components that are easy to assemble in both horizontal and vertical configurations. Launching in Q4 of 2023, Spees said, “It’s a more robust design, and has a better turning radius for our consumer goods customers. This is also ctrlX-driven”

Bosch Rexroth also showcased their Spiralveyor, in partnership with smartPAC in Italy.Bosch Rexroth also showcased their Spiralveyor, in partnership with smartPAC in Italy.It offers flexibility in various configurations such as moving declined from a spiral and wedge-style conveying where product is brought up and over, then back down into a production line. This capability allows manufacturers to set up systems that accommodate compact facility footprints, as well as serve as buffer storage. “This can really create more floor space, where you can either shrink down production lines or create walkways underneath the conveyance.” Spees added.

Suitable for CPGs and other applications, the chain surface is nearly closed, allowing even the smallest of parts to be transported safely and reliably. As evidenced on the show floor, the system is also quiet during operation. Bosch Rexroth also showcased their Spiralveyor, in partnership with smartPAC in Italy.

The booth also featured a Kassow collaborative robot designed for palletizing and depalletizing. “What sets Kassow apart is its seven-axis design, providing greater flexibility for various tasks,” explained Spees. With payload capacities ranging from 5 kg to 18 kg, it caters to a spectrum of applications, from picking and placing to palletizing.

 

 

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