German brewer automates with Aussie supplied robots

In order to survive in a tightening market, German brewer Pyraser employs two KUKA KR 150 robots supplied by Australian-based Headland

German brewer automates with Aussie supplied robots
German brewer automates with Aussie robots

July 5, 2011

In order to survive in a tightening market, German brewer Pyraser employs two KUKA KR 150 robots distributed by Australian supplier Headland

Having scrutinising its packaging systems, the family-owned business realised it needed future-oriented technology to optimise the company’s process sequences through short cycle times, gentle handling and high flexibility.

The KUKA KR 150 robots are equipped with pneumatic grippers, each of which does its work in the course of one shift, three days a week.

Compared to the set of conventional machines with palletising systems that was used before, the floor space required has been reduced by approximately 150 m2, a decisive factor in favour of the six-axis jointed-arm robots.

Costs for the cell were comparable to those for the conventional equipment.

While one of the KR 150s removes four crates, lifting 80 empty bottles at a time from the roller conveyor, the second robot places the equivalent number of full bottles into the empty crates and puts them back on the conveyor system.

To complete one cycle, the robots require 9 seconds for filling and 9.6 seconds for emptying.

The difference is a result of the measurements that the robot makes of the position of the upper ends of the empty bottles.This way the system prevents the robot from colliding with the bottles.

The German robots do not require extra sensors, since the crates are centred for handling in a position defined in two dimensions, and at the most only height can vary.

To prevent system malfunctions and the associated time-consuming manual interventions, the KR 150 robots are programmed to reduce their speed 10 percent of
the usual velocity after two failed attempts to grip bottles.

At the same time,
they increase the pressure of
their sturdy wrist. This way the robots are able to engage gripper hooks to lift the crates
off the conveyor.

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