A new robotic palletizer improves Escubedo's logistics processes
The new Escubedo robotic palletizer is a set of tools that allows us to prepare shipments and any movement of finished product in an automated way. This palletizer is made up of a box output conveyor, that automatically collects the material coming from the six warehouse lines, identifies them and takes them through different exit lanes to a robot, which is the palletizer arm. Depending on the presentation of the products, which can be loose or in rolls or discs, we use eight different types of boxes.
The implementation of the new robotic palletizer is planned in two phases.
In the first phase, already consolidated and in full operation, the standard way of palletizing each type of box has been defined. This means that, when preparing a shipment, the automatic pre-packing system calculates the number of pallets that will be needed and how it will distribute the boxes on each pallet. This information is reported to the warehouse, which is also automated, so that it can pick all the boxes required in the pre-determined order. The boxes arrive at the different exit points and the palletizing arm picks them up and places them on the pallet in the previously determined position.
When the pallet is finished, either because the maximum number of boxes has been reached or because the order is complete, the palletiser releases the pallet, which is then automatically transferred to the exit of the palletising line. Therefore, we can make automated pallets for all the types of boxes we use, but we cannot combine different types of boxes on the same pallet, they must all be the same. This means that shipments still need the intervention of operators to create multi-box pallets and thus optimize the shipment.
In the second implementation phase, the new robotic palletizer must be able to create pallets that contain different types of boxes in an optimal way. We are currently carrying out mechanical tests on the multi-box pallets and we are confident it will be up and running by September.
The main advantages of having a robotic palletizer are time savings for Escubedo and the ability to adapt to customer needs. On the one hand, producing and documenting the pallets is much faster and any risk of human error is eliminated because no operator needs to be involved. On the other hand, when customer needs are non-standard, the robotic palletizer allows us to create a particular formula, thus avoiding any confusion or subsequent handling due to errors.