The image recognition system can detect the shape, color and height of a product to ensure good quality biscuits in a flowpack.
Speaking to the grandson of the founder Gerhard Schubert, Johannes Schubert, product manager, Flowmodul, told ConfectioneryNews the Pick & Place machine can produce 500 products a minute.
“The 3D vision system has increased the efficiency in pick & place applications and the degree of automation in secondary packaging,” he said.
“After each robot ‘pick-up’, the work area is recorded using the 3D camera and the exact position of the next product to be picked up is calculated. Current position data enables the robot to accurately pick up the products even if they have shifted or are stacked.”
Similar to the Schubert 3D scanner, the technology of the camera is based on a stereo approach, whereby two high-resolution surface sensors, along with integrated LED illumination, record gray-scale images from two different angles (stereoscopy).
A coded light pattern is then used to highlight structural surfaces of the 3D objects.
This year Schubert had an area on its stand dedicated to long-term employee Heinz Brotz who builds the gripping tools for its products including Lego wheels, tablets and cinnamon-dusted biscuits.
Over the years, the prototypes he has built at the Schubert factory in Crailsheim, Germany, have filled a whole cabinet.
Brotz originally joined the company as an apprentice and was a mechanic for many years before becoming the expert for the tools that handle mechanically sensitive products in the TLM machines.