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Case Study: Automated Palletising for major soft drink manufacturer

The customer approached Loop with a requirement for a system to identify product positions on a pallet accurately enough that a robot manipulator can pick and place.

The Process
Pallets are moved around a warehouse on an automated conveyor system. Pallets with products to be picked (a donor pallet) enter the robot area and arrive at stations where they are identified by the vision system. Combinations of products from different donor pallets are moved onto order pallets by the robot based on an order need that feeds in from the warehouse management system.

The Solution
When the donor pallet arrives into the robot area, the robot moves to predetermined positions. The vision system then takes images and analyses them. It looks for key features of a product to determine an approximate location. It then examines that area in more detail, looking for significant features in order to guarantee a good pick. The results list is then analysed to ensure that all detected products have been correctly identified and that they can all be picked with the robot manipulator. The vision system is also responsible for ensuring that the order pallet is in the correct position.

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