Stäubli Unveiling New Food Processing Robots at ATX West and Other Shows in 2020February 13, 2020 by Jacob Ramirez
Swiss industrial automation giant, Stäubli, has been making the rounds in 2020, unveiling the new additions to their HE line of food-safe industrial robots at ATX West and other shows.
Food processing automation comes with a variety of difficulties unique to the sector. Industrial meat processing robotics need to be highly specialized to withstand the humid, messy environments they operate in, and as a result, Stäubli has recently unveiled their newest additions to their HE line of robotics, designed specifically for meat and food processing operations.
Stäubli: Robotics and Automation
Stäubli is a Swiss mechatronics company, originally founded in 1892 as a machine producer for the textiles industry. However, while the company still works in textiles, it diversified in 1982 and adopted a new focus on robotics and industrial automation.
Stäubli produces Selective Compliance Articulated Robot Arms (SCARA) for a wide variety of industrial applications, as well as controllers and software solutions for their automation suite, and have become one of the world's leading providers of industrial robotics across a variety of industries.
Stäubli's robots being shown. Image used courtesy of Stäubli.
Stäubli at ATX West and IPPE 2020
IPPE (the International Production and Processing Expo) is the world's largest annual convention for "poultry, feed, and meat technology," and the exposition houses over 1,300 exhibitors representing the entirety of the meat packaging and processing industry.
At the convention, Stäubli showcased three new robots as a part of their food-grade HE line of robots that are designed specifically for use in sanitary and humid conditions. These are also Stäubli's first robotics solutions intended specifically for meat packaging and processing.
Ron DeChance, Regional Sales Manager for Staubli, also mentioned, “The biggest benefit we have with this robot is that all the wiring and cables go into the base of the robot, so there’s no cables or wires from the outside."
"The two biggest benefits are the big pH range, and the capability of being able to wash it down", said DeChance when asked about the most beneficial aspects of this robot.
New Additions to the HE Line
Stäubli's line of HE (Hygienic-Humid Environment) robots are designed to withstand the humid conditions of food production facilities that can cause degradation in other, unspecialized SCARA systems.
DeChance spoke about the pH levels, mentioning that these robots run anywhere from 2-12. That benefits this industry greatly, because they are able to sterilize these robots more efficiently.
Each of the arms in the HE line are sealed and pressurized to prevent microbe penetration and component degradation through oxidation. The arms are also fully coated, with stainless steel core components, and are IP65 and IP67 safe.
If you're in the meat industry, you know that you have to disinfect these robots constantly.
Epoxy covered Staubli cobots. Image used courtesy of Staubli.
The FAST picker TP80 HE is the first picker SCARA designed specifically for food processing, with a maximum payload of one kilogram and a reach of 800mm at a repeatability of 0.05 mm for precise operation.
Meanwhile, the TX2-60 HE and TX2-90 HE are extremely similar in design and application, with both being capable of water jet cutting, tool loading/unloading, and a variety of food processing procedures in humid environments. The core differences between the two are in reach and size, with the 60 models ranging from 670 to 920 mm reach and the 90 models ranging from 1000 mm to 1450 mm. Additionally, the maximum payloads are 5 to 9 kg and 9 to 20 kg, respectively.
Stäubli will be showcasing these new products at more robotic shows in 2020.
"We're always looking for the next thing as far as robotics. That's what makes our company different than other companies", said DeChance.
Did you see any of these up-close at ATX West this week? Let us know.