Collaborative Robots in Packaging

Cobots have gained momentum in many industries and this year, the number of companies using them, especially for packaging, has gone through the roof.  Packaging is the perfect application for collaborative robots. They were made for each other.

The industries of today are always in need of packaging and customers are very particular about their packaging needs. Consequently, industries must find an economic balance because employing more people for packaging purposes only can end up being a very expensive endeavor.

Enter collaborative robots from Universal Robots.They are the solution to your packaging issues. Industries have adopted automation including collaborative robots in large numbers. Food processing and packaging industries rely on robots now more than ever.

Causes of the Rise in Robot Packaging

A majority of packaging companies have turned to robots instead of hiring more workers. Here are some of the reasons why:

  • Labor Shortage
  • Ease in maintenance
  • Increase in product demand
  • The need for consistency in product and packaging quality
  • Better quality in machine technology and collaborative robots
  • Increased demand for flexible manufacturing
  • A decline in operating costs 

What is the Challenge?

Some companies face challenges with regard to adopting collaborative robots for their packaging needs. One of the biggest challenges is their integration with other technologies such as smart sensing.

Cobots such as those developed by Universal Robots come complete with easy-to-integrate add-ons.  This challenge allows companies to choose which products are most suitable for them, thus it is a good challenge to have. In addition, it is evidence that a number of third-party options are available for collaborative robots.

On the flipside, it shows that robot manufacturers need the peripheral ones and must work closely with them to ensure easy integration of products.

Safety is very important in packaging tasks, especially if the robot will be working in close proximity with human workers. However, robotics manufacturers take this into consideration by ensuring that the collaborative robots are fitted with sensors. These sensors are able to sense when a human is close by. They reduce speed or change direction to avoid coming into contact with a human worker, thus ensuring safety.

Nevertheless, the best thing you can do is to choose the right application for your robot. This way, you will make integration between the cobot and the humans easier.

Industries that Work Best with Packaging Collaborative Robots

 Most of the industries today need packaging. However, there are those for whom packaging is a vital part of their operations. These include:

  • Food Packaging: The food industry cannot do without packaging since the products have to be packaged in order to be delivered to the consumer. Since the packaging is done en masse and most of the products are quite delicate, cobots have been of great use in ensuring that it is done efficiently. In addition, food must be handled delicately to avoid contamination.
  • Craft Brewery: Large robots are not affordable for many small enterprises. Collaborative robots come in handy in such industries. They have been instrumental in improving productivity in small industries while upholding the quality of the product.
  • Consumer Goods: Goods that end up on your kitchen or bathroom counter must be packaged properly. Industries that produce such goods churn them out them in large numbers and packaging would take a lot of time if it were to be done by humans.

Collaborative robots have earned their place in the packaging industry and many industries cannot do without them. Packaging would be a rather monotonous venture for humans who are prone to distractions and bored. The possibility of error is very high in such a scenario. Moreover, humans cannot be as fast or precise as the cobots would be.

Packaging is too important for businesses to take it for granted. It is the first thing that attracts a customer. Having the right packaging machine in the production line is imperative.