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Control package

12 August 2014

When developing new equipment, packaging machine manufacturer PKS’ emphasis on flexibility and reliability is borne out by its use of technology from Mitsubishi Electric.

For example, the PKS IBER60C wrap around box filler has 16 absolute Mitsubishi Electric servomotors with angular planetary gearboxes, which control the process from the separation of entry lines and gathering of products into groups to the filling of the box, folding or the optional fitting of a cover.

Thanks to a form type interface on the integrated 10.4" touch screen, the user can control the different machine formats. Adjustment in operation is also possible, for example by de-phasing the corresponding axis and memorising the change, without needing to stop or to empty the machine.

The PKS ALCO PAL F Palletiser System consists of a mosaics grouper with eight Mitsubishi Electric servomotors and a handling capacity of 90 packs per minute. The grouper has the capacity to move and to rotate each pack as a function of the layer mosaic, while it accompanies the product with an electronic synchronous coupling system. This is followed by the palletiser which has seven Mitsubishi Electric servomotors and can handle up to eight layers per minute.

Mitsubishi Electric is leader in the three principal application areas for servo drives in industrial automation – robotics, CNC and general motion control (GMC) – and manufactures its own technologies in all of these fields.

All these technologies can be seamlessly integrated onto one single controller platform, the MELSEC iQ Platform, combining a PLC CPU with a robot CPU and a motion CPU, along with an MES IT module to provide direct connection to higher level business systems such as SAP. What were once simply individual control components become fully integrated systems with synchronised scanning cycles.

Recently introduced products include the new MR-J4 series of servo-drives and matched servomotors, with features such as a 22-bit absolute encoder, a frequency response of 2.5kHz, and the inclusion of a double vibration suppression filter. These features help machinery manufacturers to develop machines with reduced positioning times and reduced cycle times, meeting the production requirements of customers.

Greater production flexibility is a further requirement, which translates into an increased number of axes to be controlled. To meet this need, Mitsubishi Electric uses a full duplex 150Mbps fibre optic bus, which simplifies connection and commissioning and permits multi-axis co-ordination in synchronous machines, allowing the control of up to 96 axes with the Q173DS controllers.