Case Study

High Speed Packing & Sorting

Our customer had a machine that sorted and packaged seed packets. They needed to increase the throughput of their machine but were limited by their PLC because the I/O latency was too high. High speed sorting and packaging machines require high speed and deterministic IO. Our customer chose to use our RMP EtherCAT Motion Controller because it improved their sorting speed by a factor of 5.

Details

Compay Name: Private

Date: Private

Website: Private

 

 

 

Motion Controller Highlights

High Speed and Deterministic I/O Capability- The customer required several IO functions to be performed both quickly and deterministically. Our RMP EtherCAT motion controller includes several features that enabled them to increase their sorting and packing throughput.

Automatic Output Trigger Based on Encoder Position- Using a feature of our controller called User Limits, our customer was able to setup a comparison of the conveyor position and the location of the packet that is monitored in controller firmware. As soon as the seed packet reached the diverter position, the user limit comparison became true and fired the “extend” digital output within 1 EtherCAT sample to extend the appropriate actuator and divert the packet into it’s box.

Quick Retract– Once the diverting actuator becomes extended to divert the packet, the user limit feature was used to quickly retract the actuator by evaluating the state of the “extended” digital input and immediately triggering the “retract” output.

Services Provided by RSI

Hardware Selection – RSI assisted with the selection of the IO modules needed for the application including Digital inputs/outputs and Analog inputs/outputs.

Application Software and HMI Development –  RSI developed an intuitive touchscreen based user interface. The UI takes care of all the I/O logic and helps the operator observe performance, maintain the system, and analyze I/O index location.
The application we developed logs relevant data to an online server for remote diagnostics and data analytics. The data is analyzed alongside other installed machines to determine if a machine is in need of maintenance. The data is also used to identify operators in need of further training which improves worker efficiency.

User Interface

Statistics Tab

Shows specific data. The UI in this project displayed the cumulative package ejections since the system was ran initially and the package ejections of the current day, it also displays the average package ejections since the system was started and the average ejections per hour of the current day. It displays a weekly history of how many package ejections per day, and a real-time window of currently ejected packages, their lane, and the time of ejection. This window was tailored specifically for this customer, but necessary changes can be made if needed.

IO View Tab

Makes it easy for the operator to trouble shoot and see real-time IO performance. It can be used to troubleshoot in case of failure or error.

IO Configuration Tab

Displays the current index value of each individual I/O. The index allows us to retrieve the network address of each specific I/O. It is important to double check that every digital input and output is pointing to a correct index to prevent system damage and to run efficiently.

Solution Technologies

  • sRMP EtherCAT Motion Controller
  • Ultra high Precision Angular Encoders
  • Servo Motors
  • High Torque Gearheads
  • EtherCAT Servo Drives

Customer Benefits

  • Extremely reliable control solution for mission critical applications.
  • Custom torque bias control algorithm achieves zero backlash and arc-second system accuracy.
  • Real time OS integration for application development.

The Results

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Increase In Productivty

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Increase IN Sales

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Decrease in Meetings

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Decrease in Emails

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