The increasing automation in manufacturing also requires solutions that are able to intelligently network components within plants. Rotzinger, a Switzerland-based manufacturer of packaging plants, has chosen an automation solution by CoreTigo that allows wireless control of grippers on a rail system. The wireless IO-link technology that the solution uses delivers great flexibility and eliminates the need for multiple specialised machines.
This manufacturer of machines for the pharmaceutical, cosmetics, food and beverage industries and the provider of wireless automation solutions showcased their most recent collaboration in the field of control technology for the first time at interpack 2023. CoreTigo’s wireless IO-link products have been specifically designed for wireless control and monitoring in factory automation. They allow wireless control of grippers that have been installed on shuttles or carriers on linear rail systems and which perform tasks on the product as they move through the plant. “The collaboration between Rotzinger and CoreTigo is an example of how it’s possible to combine different technologies in the field of mechanical engineering for the purposes of satisfying the latest industry requirements,” explains CoreTigo CEO Eran Zigman.
INTELLIGENT GRIPPERS FOR GREATER FLEXIBILITY
The wireless IO-link technology is now being used in the real world at an adaptive and flexible packaging plant that Rotzinger has developed for a food manufacturer. The flexible plant is capable of processing multiple packaging and product variants. To this end, a goods-carrier system that has been arranged vertically to the product-transport system was equipped with intelligent grippers. The grippers move independently of each other while operating at top speeds and synchronously with the product conveyor belts. The Switzerland-based machine manufacturer says that it was only possible to effect wireless networking – from the control system to the individual autonomously operating grippers that move endlessly in a circle – with the help of CoreTigo’s sophisticated components used in its wireless IO-link system.
During operations, the machine’s novel design delivers significantly shorter changeover times with maximum production capacity and high process flexibility for the various product and packaging types. Rotzinger says that the system also contributes greatly to sustainability thanks to the savings made in regard to raw materials, reduced space requirements and fewer machine components. The new universal machine further eliminates the need to operate a variety of special machines. Andreas Graf, CEO at Rotzinger PharmaPack: “By partnering with CoreTigo and integrating their wireless IO-link products and technology into our advanced packaging plants, we’re now able to offer our customers even more advanced capabilities and consequently deliver adaptive capabilities, increased productivity and sustainability.”
Rotzinger and CoreTigo have said that their partnership creates a networked ecosystem that enables real-time plant control and monitoring at every stage of the manufacturing process. And that system will help make machines and production lines even more flexible in the future.