December 6, 2021

U.S. Salt Replaces Conventional Palletizer with Robotic Palletizing System to Increase Reliability, Throughput and Efficiency

Customer Problem

Long-time customer of Adaptec, U.S. Salt, wanted to replace an existing Lambert conventional palletizer with a robotic palletizing system. Palletizing two differently bagged products – one in plastic and the other in paper – the conventional palletizer could not efficiently run the plastic bagged product. Implementing a robotic system offers increased throughput, reliability, and flexibility, with the potential to run up to 24 bags-per-minute (BPM) with minimal changeover between bags.

Adaptec Robotic Palletizer Solution

Adaptec provided a turnkey solution, removing the existing conveyor, pallet dispenser, and palletizer, while designing a system that custom fit a specific footprint within their facility. A new dispenser, pallet conveyor, palletizing robot, and wrapper with a slip sheet dispenser were installed.

The operator selects the product that is running on the HMI, which then communicates with the overhead conveyance. A pneumatic cylinder raises or lowers to allow product to infeed from one of the three conveyor lines. As product moves to the pick conveyor, pallets are dispensed, queued, and staged underneath the robot base. Product is detected on the pick conveyor, signaling the robot to pick and place the product on the pallet.

After the product is palletized, a fully automatic Wulftec top sheeter and stretch wrapper secure the product for transport. Finished pallets are progressed to the next zone – the unload area. Zones allow the cell to maintain operation even as operations down the line are commencing.

Adaptec also designed and installed a Uesco monorail crane to assist operators with loading the top sheet rolls onto the system. This new palletizing system significantly improves changeover time product-to-product, allowing the customer to run both paper and plastic bags on the same line.

Products used

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