Injection Molding: New Automation Approach for Medical Pipette Tips
Hekuma’s fast and flexible new-generation system will be demonstrated at K 2019.
The newest generation of its automated system for demolding and packing medical pipette tips will be demonstrated at the K 2019 show by Hekuma GmbH. The new Hekutip system is said to far outperform earlier versions. One new feature is the gripper system for the linear robot (photo), which reportedly enables takeout times of less than 0.6 sec for 16 to 128 cavities. Overall cycle times of 4 to 4.5 sec are said to be achievable.
Additional time savings result from parallel movements of the servo-driven handling axes, which also offer extremely high and repeatable positioning accuracy. Simple setting options enable fast format changes from the operator terminal. “On-the-fly” camera inspection can provide 100% quality-assurance checks for presence, I.D./O.D., horizontal and vertical burrs, spray skin, edge ejection, etc. Only1.25 sec are required to fully inspect 24 tips. Reject parts are automatically removed and replaced with known good parts. A reject rate of up to 8% can be accommodated without effect on system cycle time, Hekuma claims.
Filled racks are also inspected for completeness and presence. Users have the option of filling racks with mixed or cavity-separated product for maximum traceability. Modular design of the system allows flexibility for different cavitation, choice of 100% camera inspection or random control, optional labeling or marking of product racks, and further packaging options for the racks, such as stacking, lidding, banding and shrink wrapping. Systems can also be configured to include filter separation, feeding and filter assembly and batch tracking.
A 64-cavity Hekutip system will be demonstrated at Sumitomo (SHI) Demag’s booth.
Blazing speed plus shrinking energy consumption supported the “green” theme at the big show. Smarter controls and growing connectivity were another key focus.
Injection molded parts are typically demolded with simple pick-and-place automation—a top-mounted, gantry-style (also called Cartesian, linear, or traversing) three-axis robot.
With so many choices available today, it’s important for molders to understand the pros and cons of Cartesian vs. articulated-arm robots and how their capabilities overlap more than ever before.