Hygienically automated – versatile and space-saving
In arduous cheese manufacturing at BMI (Bayerische Molkereiindustrie) in Jessen/Saxony-Anhalt, Germany, two cells, every outfitted with a hygienic Stäubli six-axis robotic, take over the first packaging of freshly produced 15- and 20-kg cheese blocks at 10-second intervals for round 20 hours. That is adopted by full washing to the best hygiene requirements. This distinctive idea provides advantages by way of efficiency, house necessities, hygiene and adaptability.
To supply 35,000 tons of arduous cheese per 12 months, about 350 million liters of milk are wanted. Since every dairy cow yields round 10,000 liters of milk a 12 months, round 35,000 cows – most from Saxony-Anhalt, Saxony and Brandenburg – provide the required uncooked materials for the arduous cheese manufacturing facility of the BMI dairy cooperative in Jessen. The general web site, with mozzarella cheese factories, processes some 1.5 million liters a day.
Versatile large-scale manufacturing on state-of-the-art tools
This web site, which additionally produces whey powder merchandise, shouldn’t be solely the most important cheese manufacturing facility within the BMI group, but additionally a significant producer all through Germany, particularly since its product range is broad and its manufacturing is extremely versatile: BMI produces Cagliata, white and pink cheddar, Edam and Emmental amongst others in Jessen. A big portion of those merchandise go to industrial clients, however additionally they go to retail chains for finish customers beneath the Paladin model or non-public labels.
Between 2017 to 2019, the corporate invested the spectacular sum of greater than €100 million, together with funding in a brand new arduous cheese manufacturing facility to provide these volumes and varieties economically with persistently prime quality. Your complete plant runs 20/7, as Thomas Benicke, manufacturing supervisor on the arduous cheese manufacturing facility explains, “We produce for 20 hours. Then the complete plant stops, will get cleaned, and a brand new manufacturing cycle begins.”
Major packaging of cheese blocks in two robotic cells
This tempo additionally applies to the ultimate stage, particularly packaging. When the cheese leaves the drainage belt, it enters one in all six Tetra Pak Casomatic SC7 programs by way of a pipeline. These programs repeatedly and totally routinely deal with pre-pressing, forming cheese blocks, and filling. The ultimate product is cheese blocks weighing exactly 15 or 20 kg, prepared for packaging.
BMI commissioned Lemmermeyer GmbH & Co KG Edelstahl-Anlagenbau in Deiningen, Germany, which has in depth expertise with dealing with and packaging traces for the meals business – and has damaged new floor on this space.
5.5 tons of cheese per hour packed in blocks
Three of every of the six Tetra Pak columns are assigned to a robotic cell with a Stäubli six-axis TX-200L robotic in HE (humid surroundings) design. With a load capability of 100 kg and attain of two.60 meters, the robots are optimally ready to deal with the cheese blocks, and due to the gripper developed by Lemmermeyer, even have multitasking functionality.
The bottom-mounted robotic first grips a movie tube and pulls it over the movie shoe of the filling column. The system then pushes the 15- or 20-kg block of cheese into the tube, or two blocks of cheese if 40-kg models are being produced. The robotic locations the prepackaged cheese on a two-track pre-buffer conveyor belt, forming batches of 4 x 15 kg or 4 x 20 kg, or 2 x 40 kg. The batches are aligned and ready for vacuuming and sealing. The next steps then happen: metallic detection, labeling and leakage testing earlier than the blocks are conveyed to the ripening space.
As a result of the robotic is so versatile, the gripper developed by Lemmermeyer has a number of features. A movie spreader takes over the bag supplied. As soon as the cheese has been pushed in, a flat gripper is used to put the block on the two-track conveyor belt. In doing so, it rotates each second block by 180 levels in order that the feed for the vacuum system is optimally utilized.
The 2 robots carry out their duties with nice endurance and a exceptional packing capability of as much as 5.5 tons per hour – equal to eight to 12 blocks per minute. Regardless of the excessive throughput, the programs are additionally extraordinarily versatile. For instance, the division into two similar cells ensures that manufacturing and packaging can nonetheless be carried out even when one of many two cells is at a standstill.
If required, the blocks can be moved out of the cell in the wrong way and eliminated by way of the infeed conveyor belt. And naturally, blocks with completely different weights can be packed and dealt with. The management system, with clear visualization of the complete system, provides many potentialities.
Robots: Set for hygiene from base to wrist
Nonetheless, the primary purpose BMI invested in versatile automation was not for personnel discount however for prime hygiene requirements. Thomas Benicke: “As a cheese manufacturing facility whose core manufacturing processes are prompted by micro organism, we should keep away from the danger of introducing contamination in any respect prices. That is greatest achieved when people don’t intervene.”
That stated, individuals do come into contact with the robots as soon as a day throughout thorough lathering in cleansing mode. After only one course of like this, a “regular” robotic would hardly be operational. However Stäubli HE robots are ready for this from base to wrist. All cables are routed contained in the housing, which can also be barely pressurized to forestall liquid or moisture from penetrating. There are not any lifeless areas the place residual dust can settle, and the coating can also be hygiene-compliant.
100 tons of block cheese a day – with a cycle time of 10 seconds
Which means that the robots can be utilized reliably in processes the place hygiene is crucial – even with thorough every day cleansing e.g., by washing with water-based media with a pH vary from 2 to 12. Regardless, they work durably over lengthy durations regardless of the excessive pressure; in any case, because the “sole employees” of their cell, they deal with round 100 tons of block cheese a day with a cycle time of 10 seconds. That is confirmed by the packaging line developed by Lemmermeyer at BMI in Jessen – in addition to many different installations with hygienic Stäubli robots within the meals business.
Textual content by: Industrie Kommunikation Högel
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