End-customers and retailers are calling for ever greater packaging variety. At the same time, packaging and materials need to become significantly more sustainable for the future. These trends demand the shortest possible response times from manufacturers and very rapid adjustments to the market. This can only be achieved with highly flexible packaging machines. With the Flowpacker flow-wrapping machine, Schubert is offering an integrated machine solution that opens up a new era of flexibility and future-proofing.
Compared with conventional machine solutions, the Flowpacker saves up to 70 per cent space in production. At the same time, customers benefit from extraordinary flexibility: Virtually any type of and rapid changeover between sealing technologies, product formats, or proven and new packaging materials is possible. This all contributes to making the packaging machine much more cost-effective in the future. With the Schubert Flowpacker, manufacturers can now adapt much more flexibly and sustainably to the needs of consumers and the trade, thereby creating new market opportunities and competitive advantages.
Learn more about our the lightline flowpacker advantages in our new web-seminar series Schubert4You.
Improving packaging processes in the interest of the customer – has always been the mission and goal of Schubert and is today pursued by the third generation of the family-owned packaging machine manufacturer. With each of its innovations, Schubert not only wants to pick up on market trends, but also to optimally meet its customers’ needs for efficient, compact and interface-free solutions. Part of this success is an approach that the founder, Gerhard Schubert, pursued back in the 1980s: packaging with the aid of robots. Schubert’s developers and machine builders are always picking up on impulses from the field of robot technology. And all these strengths come to fruition with the Flowpacker flow-wrapping machine.
An integrated flow-wrapping process in a packaging line
Compared to mechanical flow-wrapping machines with conventional infeed, Schubert’s packaging line offers unique customer benefits. This technological quantum leap is only made possible by the unique combination of pick & place robots and a horizontally positioned flow-wrapping unit: Both machine functions are installed in TLM frames from Schubert and seamlessly connected in a single line. The pick & place robots place each product into the infeed system of the flow-wrapping machine, replacing the long infeed belts that were previously used. Image processing allows only perfect products to be packaged. As a result, the flow-wrapping process is compactly and entirely integrated into the system.
Modular packaging technology for wider performance ranges
Modularity is a top priority at Schubert, because the modular approach brings more flexibility to the machine configuration and the packaging process. This also applies to the flow-wrapping machines: Depending on requirements, the number and type of pick & place robots can be varied to adapt the Flowpacker’s performance range to customer needs. The interaction of image recognition, pick & place robots and the flow-wrapping unit integrated into the line enables a remarkably high machine efficiency of up to 99 per cent – and guarantees virtually one hundred per cent unrivalled product quality.
The flow-wrapping machine’s integrated concept offers customers outstanding flexibility on several levels. The use of pick & place robots for feeding ensures that a wide variety of products can be packed. This includes especially sensitive goods that crumble quickly, are fragile or sensitive to heat. Additionally, the variable robots allow a wide range of packaging formats with and without trays to be used. The number of active pick & place robots in a line can also be varied depending on output requirements.
The flow-wrapping machines themselves also ensure flexibility: The Schubert unit switches effortlessly between cold- and heat-sealing technology, and even processes sustainable packaging materials and the latest generation of films without the need for further modifications. What’s more, the Flowpacker’s extremely slim machine layout requires only a third of the floor space of a conventional flow-wrapping machine – leaving more flexibility for expansions in the production hall.
In contrast to the long infeed belts of mechanical packaging machines, processing with pick & place robots is much gentler and more efficient: no product abrasion on long infeed paths, no rejects due to breakage, no unnecessary contamination of the packaging system. Even highly sensitive products can be packed using the Flowpacker without any problems. The unique upstream image processing with the 3D scanner carries out the optical inspection of individual products. This ensures that only absolutely flawless goods that meet customer specifications in every respect are processed by the robots.
More flexibility through
- proven and new packaging materials, including sustainable films
- a wide variety of product formats, including highly sensitive products
- diverse packaging formats, with and without a tray
- changing between cold- and heat-sealing on one machine
More quality through
- high sealing quality due to unique sealing systems,
- product-friendly packaging thanks to feeding with pick & place robots
- quality control of all products via image recognition with the Pick and Place Vision System
More process efficiency through
- extremely fast format changeovers for product, packaging and sealing technology
- compact machine layout with significant space savings
- high machine efficiency thanks to OEE evaluation with GRIPS.world
Are you interested in a personal demonstration at our Crailsheim plant?
Complete solution from Schubert for packing frozen pancakes into flowpacks.
The Flowpacker has already proven itself many times over in the confectionery, snack and food industries. It is extremely popular in the baked goods industry: When packing the sensitive baked goods into flowpacks, manufacturers benefit in a special way from the product-friendly, efficient packaging solution. Even highly sensitive products from the pharmaceutical sector can be optimally packaged with the flow-wrapping machine thanks to safe and reliable processes. The high flexibility of the machine guarantees a very short time-to-market and therefore a decisive competitive advantage, especially in fast-moving sectors such as the cosmetics industry.
With the integrated solution from Schubert, virtually all product configurations in flowpacks are possible. The pick & place robots process naked products or products already packaged in primary packaging, and pre-group them in numerous variants for the flow-wrapping machine. Single, stacked, side by side or on top of each other, with or without trays – the possibilities are close to endless.
Naked products, individually or in stacks:
Several naked products, individually next to each other or in stacks next to each other:
Several naked products, stacked in a tray or placed upright:
Several packed products in a row, several packed products in a tray:
Several flowpacks in a string, several naked products side by side in a long flowpack:
Ask us specific questions about your project, we will be happy to advise you! Please send us an explanatory sketch or a photograph with your inquiry. Our experts look forward to supporting you in the context of a personal meeting.
The Flowpacker flow-wrapping machine consists of at least three and up to any number of TLM modules. The horizontally positioned flow-wrapping unit is fully integrated into the TLM modules. A freely selectable number of pick & place robots is located upstream. Depending on performance and space requirements, either the proven F4 robots or the T4 and T5 robots from Schubert based on the delta design can be used. The flow-wrapping process is fully integrated into the line, making the machine layout extremely compact.
Feeding with pick & place
For the packaging process, the naked products or products already provided with primary packaging are fed to the system on a belt. An image recognition system with a 3D scanner checks position, orientation, shape, colour and volume. Only perfect products are then processed by the pick & place robots. With their individually designed tools, the robots pick up the products gently and, depending on the format, group or stack them in the chain or in prepared trays. Thanks to the exchangeable robot tools and carriers, product or packaging format changes can be implemented quickly and easily.
Sealing technologies for any type of film
For packaging into flowpacks, the packaging machine is optionally available with both cold-sealing and heat-sealing technologies. Changing between sealing technologies can be carried out without any problems. In the heat-sealing process, a heat-sealing unit or an ultrasonic sealing unit first closes the longitudinal seam of the flowpacks. This is followed by Schubert’s unique flying cross-sealing unit. It adapts fully automatically to the speed of the upstream pick & place robots for each flowpack. This not only ensures constant sealing times and a high quality of the sealed seam – the sealing time can also be programmed to the millisecond. The GS.Gate industrial gateway, which comes as standard with the Flowpacker, also offers users extensive analysis, service and optimisation options for the system via the GRIPS.world platform.
A freely combinable Flowpacker or a quickly available lightline Flowpacker
Thanks to the integrated solution and its modular design, the entire flow-wrapping unit can be combined with any TLM line from Schubert. This means that even highly complex packaging tasks requiring the greatest possible variety can be implemented in a single packaging line. For less complex standard packaging tasks, Schubert also offers its customers the lightline version of the flow-wrapping machine. The Flowpacker from Schubert’s lightline machine series is preconfigured and therefore available within a very short time: The delivery time compared to freely designed packaging machines is reduced by half to just a few months. For industries with a short time-to-market, this is an important factor for survival in the market.
- Combination of flow-wrapping unit and pick & place robots
- Compact machine layout due to an integrated flow-wrapping process
- Very high format variety for products, packaging and films possible
- Cold- and heat-sealing technology in one system
- Unique flying cross-sealing unit
- Optionally, F4 or T4/T5 robot
- Individual robot tools with 3D format parts
- Image recognition with 3D scanner
- Integrated GS.Gate with GRIPS.world platform
- lightline variant with half the delivery time available
For more information about our lightline Flowpacker there is a special flyer at your disposal.