Packaging machines with digital pneumatics

Coffee, sugar, pharmaceuticals – nowadays, virtually everything is packed in small, low-cost sachets. The flexible flat pouch machine from Bosch Packaging Technology ensures correct packaging and the precise mixing ratio. The world’s first freely scalable sachet machine relies on the flexibility provided by the digital pneumatics of the Festo Motion Terminal.

Food to go is the latest trend. And that is why the Sigpack VPF (Vertical Platform Flat pouch) machine has to offer maximum packing flexibility and be able to cope with rapid format changes and filling quantities of just a few grams. It is a machine that can be easily adapted to the latest market requirements. With a filling capacity of up to 1800 sachets per minute, it offers the best performance per square metre of floor space on the market.

Quick adaptation

The decentralised dosing system has a dedicated dosing chamber and stock of product for each lane and supports anywhere between three and twelve lanes. “Thanks to the modular concept, we can now even package different products such as salt and pepper on one machine at the same time,” explains Rolf Steinemann, Product Manager for Food at Bosch Packaging Systems.

The hygienic and ergonomic design makes the Sigpack VPF easy to access and oversee. Short cleaning and changeover times dramatically increase the overall equipment effect­iveness. There are fewer product losses and rejects and the packaging process is more cost-effective.

Precise dosing every time formats at the push of a button

The filling mechanism has a high-precision auger dosing unit. Together with intelligent trend control, this makes for even more precise dosing. “The Festo Motion Terminal makes the feed process much easier,” reports Maik Lamprecht, the project manager who oversaw the Sigpack VPF’s development. Each lane can be adjusted individually at the touch of a button. “We have been able to cut the number of valve slices by 3 and many functions only require minimal design engineering,” he adds.

Greater process reliability

The Festo Motion Terminal also allows pressure and vacuum measurement for process monitoring, leakage monitoring to check for contamination of the valve, as well as individual adjustment of the cleaning and drainage pressure of each lane. “We have received a significant boost in terms of process reliability,” says Lamprecht.

The Festo Motion Terminal can carry out all these functions. It is the first ever product to put the revolutionary concept of digitised pneumatics into practice. Apps are respon­sible for controlling the switchover of pneumatic functions and accommodating new formats by changing parameters. The integrated intelligent sensors for control, diagnostics and self-learning eliminate the need for additional components, reduce complexity and simplify the ordering process.

All developers have to do is create a basic machine type which can then be quickly and easily configured to match customer requirements by selecting the appropriate apps. “The Festo Motion Terminal is providing pneumatics with Industry 4.0 capability. Process data from the Motion Terminal can now be processed on our own condition monitoring platform,” explains Rolf Steinemann.

The Festo Motion Terminal is awaiting release in the Australian market.

Read more about this story here:
https://www.festo.com/net/en-au_au/SupportPortal/Downloads/454846/490059/tia_2_2017_Bosch_Packaging_EN.pdf