Solution Spotlight: Robotics and Intralogistics
It is fairly straightforward to automate repetitive tasks when dealing with fixed products of a known size, position and orientation. However, when it comes to handling irregular shapes or randomly oriented objects, 3D vision guided robots are a flexible solution which can help streamline a variety intralogistics processes.
This newsletter presents three different examples of our state-of-the-art solutions which utilise our key capabilities:
3D vision systems for highly precise and accurate robot guidance and inspection.
Bespoke gripper design for handling heavy, awkward, or fragile objects.
Modular designs making it simple to increase capacity and grow with your business.
Integration of other systems to suit your needs such as AMRs, checkweighers, etc.
Robotic Labelling – IdentifEYE
Problem: Applying custom labels in a specific location on products which have a wide range of shapes and sizes, all at different orientations, can be a time consuming and labour-intensive process.
Solution: IdentifEYE, our robotic labelling cell with integrated conveyor and vision system station can image and apply customised labels on irregular shapes with ease.
Process Description: As parcels enter the cell via a conveyor, they are scanned by the vision system. The location and orientation of the parcel is found and any identifying features, such as a barcode, can be read. This information is sent to the printer so that the corresponding labels can be printed on demand, and also sent to the robot which then picks the label and repositions itself in preparation as the product comes down the conveyor, adjusting to the correct angle to apply the label.
Available Cell Options: Checkweighers, air knives to remove static, water or debris, quality control.
Palletising and Depalletising Robots
Problem: Constantly picking products from one pallet and placing them on another, especially ones that are heavy or awkward, can be a hazardous task for an operator – even more so when you need to keep up with a constant flow of the factory.
When automating a mixed case palletising operation, such as cartons and plastic containers, it can be difficult to handle multiple products in different locations without slowing down the process.
Solution: A robotic cell with an overhead 3D vision system, integrated onto the robot with a bespoke all-in-one tool. The tool has an array of vacuum cups and a two-fingered gripper, designed to pick a range of products.
Process Description: The integrated vision system allows the robot to image products in different locations, for example, if there are pallets arriving on different conveyors. The all-in-one tool means the robot can pick up cartons and containers with handles without the need to swap tools, allowing the system to go from one type of product to the next, eliminating changeover time.
Available Cell Options: Checkweighers, air knives to remove static, water or debris, quality control, pallet wrappers, AGVs.
Robotic Integration with ASRS and AMRs
Problem: Combining discrete technologies for an intelligent, digital factory for the automated retrieval and transport of parts, can be a difficult task without the right expertise.
The combination of Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (ASRS), Automated Mobile Robots (AMR), industrial robots, and the required safety systems, is no mean feat.
Solution: A flexible robotic cell with a cell controller to interface between the ASRS; AMRs; robot with a gripper to handle various sized containers with integrated RFID scanner and a 3D vision system. A 3D zone monitoring safety system will allows AMRs to travel in and out of the cell, whilst stopping operators from accidentally entering the cell during robotic movement.
Process Description: An AMR or an AGV can be used to autonomously carry containers or parts around your factory. Communication between the technologies is implemented to allow the robot to read an RFID tag mounted on the container or AMR, while checking available storage locations in the ASRS.
FibreFORM™ wins Innovation of the Year Award
We are thrilled to share that Loop has won Composites UK’s ‘Innovation in Composite Manufacture’ Award for FibreFORM™.
The current design of FibreFORM™ consolidates over 10 years of R&D work the team have dedicated to making large-scale composite preform manufacturing practicable – getting the aerospace ready for net zero.
Fundraising for Children in Need at Loop Technology
A massive well done to the employees at Loop who helped raise a whopping £126.20 for Children In Need on the 21st of November.
Games were held as a way of fundraising, with the Loop team taking guesses on how many sweets in the jar, how many balloons in the car and name that teddy bear! Congratulations team on the success of raising money for such a great cause.
“Being part of such an innovative environment is exciting and fulfilling and I learn something new about Automation every day. I also get to see very cool robots in action!” Carolyn Smart – HR.
With great ideas come great challenges, cross-functional working and building strong relationships.
If you want to get down to the detail, be super-creative and enjoy the career progression opportunities a growing company can offer, check out our current vacancies.
Next Month’s Focus
Reflecting on 2021
As the year draws to a close, Loop Technology reflects on the busy year they have had. Looking back on some of their solutions and your favourite product spotlights before signing off 2021, ready for the Christmas festivities.