Rationator Maschinenbau GmbH from Hillesheim, Germany, which is specialised in filling lines, has made developments in its bottle handling machine Bottlemat Robot as part of the filling line: by adding a fourth vacuum gripper, which inserts the bottles lying on a conveyor belt into the transport pucks serving as containers, the potential output could be increased by about 20 per cent. Due to the additional gripper the Bottlemat Robot can now set up a maximum 165 bottles per minute instead of the previous figure of 140 bottles and forward them to the filling process.
The Ratilight Puck System used in all lines produced by Rationator guarantees a high process reliability and is also compatible with a multitude of different formats. The handling of PET bottles has been significantly improved through modifications to the machine’s loading area. With the plant-internal networking of the individual units in the filling line, the requirements of industry 4.0 are also met – delays can be detected automatically and enable an optimisation of the operation. At the interpack 2020 in Düsseldorf Rationator will be presenting the Bottlemat Robot as well as a filling and capping line.
A further advantage of the new series of the Bottlemat Robot is the processing of PET bottles. Because freshly produced PET bottles have a very high surface adhesion, which creates a sticky effect and makes handling more difficult. “In the further development of the Bottlemat Robot, we have therefore made various optimisations to improve the handling of PET bottles – especially in the area of feeding”, explains Musat. Corners and edges in the bottle infeed area were removed, the transport process was straightened, the elevator belt now rises at a smaller angle and the area of the receiving belt and the return opening were enlarged. As a result, bottles with a larger volume in particular can spread better and do not stick to each other.