Sensing individual products with no gaps

18 June 2014

SICK UK has launched DeltaPac, which is believed to be the first photoelectric sensor able to detect individual packs on a conveyor even if there is no gap between them.

The sensor uses patented technology to eliminate the need to separate packs on a FMCG production line. Traditionally, a clear gap had to be left between packs, in order for an optical sensor’s beam of light to be returned by the reflector positioned on the opposite side of the conveyor. The DeltaPac differentiates between packs in a new way, detecting changes in their outline contours at speeds of up to 3 m/sec and 200,000 units an hour. The result is more reliable upstream process control and downstream accuracy for printing, labelling and palletisation with no need for pack buffering or separation mechanisms. 

The sensors can detect folded edges, rounded, radiused and faceted corner packages.  The company’s background suppression technology is said to ensure that glare, reflection, bright colours, changes in contrast and other potential distractions are ignored.

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