A packaging line for dermatology products made of machines by several suppliers becomes an excellent example of cooperation between different Companies.
MG2, leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of automatic machines for capsule filling and end-of-line solutions, through its US branch MG America is the prime contractor of a project involving some of the most important Companies in the field of pharmaceutical and cosmetic packaging, such as Romaco. It is a complete line to pack bottles containing a dermatologic product made by an important multinational Company. The line complies with pharmaceutical quality standards and high flexibility, as it is used to produce many different sizes, which can be packed in a wide range of solutions.
The line checks, arranges and packs bottles with a capacity ranging from 4 ounces (100 cc. approx.) up to 32 ounces (one litre approx.). Once filled and labelled, bottles are conveyed to a Romaco’s cartoner mod. PC4200. This continuous motion cartoner consistently delivers flexibility, ergonomics and efficiency at speeds from 230 up to 400 cartons/min. In this case, a speed of 150 bottles/min. is required. State-of-the-art automatic cartoning achieved by total machine management via operator panel. Romaco’s machine movements are harmonized and efficiently handled by servo motors and electronic cams, optimized for each type of product handled. Transfer by toothed belts and pulleys eliminates the use of chains and mechanical gears giving optimum operating economy and drastic reduction of maintenance, wear, noise and cleaning. Individual safety clutches on all main movements avoid mechanical overloads and any possible damage to product or machine. In the end, Venturi vacuum generator eliminates additional noise at carton pick-up, opening and leaflet feeding. In this packaging line, Romaco’s cartoner is used to create cartons containing small capacity bottles. In case of bigger capacity, Romaco’s machine is bypassed and bottles go directly to the following machine, a bundler, which can be as well bypassed in order to pack loose bottles. The next machine in line is MG2’s case packer/palletizer: a vertical case packer mod. GTL30 which acts in concert with a GRP palletizer to satisfy many requirements. In fact, MG2’s machine can receive cartons, bundled bottles or loose bottles (usually of a big size). It can as well handle display boxes which are manually prepared between the cartoner and the bundler, where a manual loading zone is available. To cope with all these options, GTL30 must guarantee the maximum flexibility. In fact, MG2’s machine designed for the customer is equipped with 3 feeding systems: the first one is arranged for horizontal stacking of bottles or bundles, the second one employs a twist system, which lifts the product (in this case the bundle of cartons), makes it stand and arranges it for case packing. The third unit, conceived for loose bottles, employs feeding screws which orientate the product. Depending on the product size, these units can be “tool-less” adjusted.
The machine is equipped with a robot acting on different picking zones, with twelve different picking heads to handle several sizes. Some cases have a vertical divider, which requires high precision during product insertion. Once filled, the case is labelled by a proper integrated unit and then weighed. Afterwards, a unit specifically designed by MG2 checks the case closure, both on case top and bottom. The product finally reaches the GRP robopalletizer, which is equipped with only one picking head for all sizes, suitable to handle both US and EU pallets (the final product is distributed in the United States as well as in Europe). The palletizer is also equipped with an empty pallet magazine, a unit for automatic pallet change and a full pallet automatic outfeed. In the end, MG2’s machine is equipped with a slip-sheets feeding unit to place a slip-sheet between the products layers, in order to guarantee their stability.
MG2 MACHINES IN THE LINE:
GTL30 is an easy-to-use and easy-to-maintain vertical case packer. Unit maintenance and cleaning is greatly facilitated thanks to its cantilever (balcony) type design. GTL30 achieves the right balance between the high quality mechanical design that guarantees positive case opening, erection and handling and the highly advanced electronic technology that incorporates the use of brushless motors for the main machine movements. Compressed air system is only used for the secondary movements. GTL30 is available in two versions (GTL30 – GTL30/L) to run different case size ranges. Case closure can be either hot-melt or tape. Case packing section does not require any size parts in that different case sizes can be accommodated by simple and precise adjustments via the use of three hand-wheels. Various types of product in-feed systems are available. The in-feed system can be installed to the right or the left of the case magazine.
The palletizer/depalletizer GRP is featured by an anthropomorphic robot, which guarantees high performances and flexibility. The machine has a modular structure, which can be configured by the customer with the required functional modules: one or two palletizing bays, automatic empty pallet feeding with full pallet automatic outfeed, slip-sheet magazine to feed a slip-sheet between the layers of products. The robopalletizer/depalletizer GRP has many points of strength: it can easily switch from an EU to an US pallet size and viceversa at any time, just by adding two spacers; the palletizing scheme is easily reconfigurable; full pallets can reach a height of up to 2200 mm. The GRP robopalletizer is an ideal end-of-line for MG2 horizontal and vertical case packers, but it can as well be connected to any upstream equipment.