Overview of Palletising Robots
Palletising robots easy to program
Main Elements of PALLETISING ROBOT CELL
1. The palletising robot
Firstly we have the robot itself. Considerations here are for payload, envelope and cycle time. In terms of the payload, this will be the maximum weight that the robot can handle. The total payload will be the weight of the product plus the weight of the gripper. The robot payload will need to be greater than the combined weight of the product and gripper.Keep in mind, if the centre of gravity is away from the centre of the mounting flange this will reduce the payload capacity of the robot.
2. Gripper for Palletising robot operations
Fitted to the robot will be some form of gripper for picking up the product. However, there are different types of grippers depending on the product and the required stacking pattern.
First, in the case of a pneumatic finger-type gripper, this will open around the product and have fingers that close to clamp the product. In this way, it will stop the product from moving during the movement of the robot. When used this type of gripper remembers to consider the stack pattern as at the moment of placing the product the gripper will open and push any product already palletised. Usually, the gripper will release the product above its position in order that the gripper has room to open.
3. Vacuum for Palletising & Handling
An alternative solution is to use a vacuum system rather than fingers for picking up the product. In this case, the product is held in place by an array of suckers which usually grip the product from its upper surface. Therefore, this system has the advantage that tight stacking patterns can be produced allowing the products to be placed up against products already on the pallet.
4. Cell Safety Panel
To control the complete cell a safety panel with cell control pushbuttons will be installed which is electrically connected to the robot controller. This panel will include the safety relays for the two safety circuits for the robot and any ancillary equipment. One circuit will be for the Estops, these will stop the robot in all modes, the other will be for the cell access and this will stop the robot and spindle whenever the robot is running in Auto mode.
5. Layout Palletising Cell
The cell will also need some form of guarding which will form a room or enclosure to make sure that nobody is present whilst the robot is working in automatic. The usual layout for a palletising cell is to have two pallet locations with the robot in the middle of the two.
The robot will palletise to one side and once completed will move over to palletise the second side. Then, while working on the second pallet the first pallet is removed and replaced with a new empty pallet.