Industrial Utility Efficiency    

Pneumatics Boost Productivity of Doroti Pack Thermoforming Machine

For more than 20 years, Hungarian-based Doroti Pack Ltd. has specialized in the production and servicing of state-of-the-art packaging machines. Their focus is on developing, manufacturing, producing and selling premium-quality packaging equipment, including their line of DorPack thermoforming machines which are often used for food products such as fresh meat, fish, dairy products, bakery ware, confectionery and ready-cooked foods. Dorati Pack chose to incorporate Aventics pneumatic components in latest thermoforming machine for optimal productivity and machine longevity.

 

Machines Engineered to Meet Unique Needs

Each DorPack thermoforming machine is individually designed to suit customers’ special needs and product parameters. In addition to the main product line, the Doroti Pack engineers also developed a labeling system and other convenient accessories such as an automatic loading system.

Ranging in length from six meters to ten meters, DorPack thermoforming machines are energy-efficient and constructed in a stainless-steel design that is not only easy to keep clean for hygienic operation, but is very simple to operate. The machines, measuring only one meter in width, are suitable for modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) where the atmosphere is usually a mix of carbon dioxide, nitrogen or oxygen. In addition, packaging can be done under vacuum, which extends the shelf life of the product by removing the atmosphere. This slows down the microbial deterioration of food, significantly extending the “best used by” date. Film widths for the thermoforming machines range from 420 to 600 millimeters (mm) to allow packaging for a wide variety of food sizes.

 DorPack Machine

Doroti DorPack Thermoforming packaging machines are individually designed to meet the specific needs of customer and product parameters. Photo courtesy of Doroti Pack Ltd.

During use, the DorPack thermoforming machines perform many functions in rapid succession. Working with rolls of film material, the film transport chain inserts the film into the molding tool, with the tool clamps actuated by a pneumatic cylinder. The film is preheated and compressed in a chilled form with a vacuum or compressed air. The film absorbs the shape of the mold so that the packaging container tray is formed. The product is placed in the tray, which then goes into a second mold. This tool, also operated by a pneumatic cylinder, is then closed. With vacuum pumps, the machine can reduce the pressure to less than five mbar if needed to release the protective gas into the package, then the tray is wrapped with the top film. The product then goes to the labeling station where labels can be placed on the bottom or top of the package, sometimes printed on the spot. Next, the package is delivered to the cutting station, which is also operated by pneumatic cylinders, where it is appropriately cut and moved by a conveyor belt, which pulls the finished packages from the machine.

 

Pneumatics Address Food Packaging Requirements

For many years, Doroti has relied exclusively on pneumatic components and modules from Aventics. As an industry sector specialist, the company knows the special requirements in the processing and packaging of food and beverages, which results in components suited for use in different hygienic zones for food packaging applications.

For its DorPack thermoforming machines, Doroti uses Aventics model PRA (ISO 15552 profile) pneumatic cylinders, fittings and accessories. The cylinders operate lifting devices and cutting devices vertically. The DorPack machines use between four and six PRA cylinders, depending on the customer’s functionality requirements.

The PRA profile cylinder is capable of “ideal cushioning,” providing optimized cycle times while reducing end-of-stroke “bounce,” vibration and noise, all while providing a very long service life. Besides the benefits from ideal cushioning, Sandor Pallang, Owner of Doroti said, “The PRA cylinders offer good hygienic design, and no further sensor mounting is required because it fits into the cylinder profile. Based on our experience, the PRA family is also usually in stock and readily available.”

Aventics PRA

Aventics’ PRA profile pneumatic cylinders conform to ISO 15552 standards and are designed to reduce wear, noise and vibration. Photo courtesy of Aventics.

With its most recent machines Doroti also started using the Aventics AV05 (Advanced Valve) system with AES (Advanced Electronics System), which offers additional Industry 4.0 capabilities that are becoming more important in the food and beverage sector.

Designed specifically to cover a broad range of industrial automation applications, the AV series of directional control valves come in a compact housing made of high-performance polymers and provide flows up to 0.7 Cv (700 Nl/min). The valves can be controlled via D-Sub connection with 25 or 44 pins, AES valve electronics, or an integrated I/O-Link interface. The AES supports all common fieldbus and Ethernet protocols. If necessary, the smaller AV03 version with 0.3 Cv (300 Nl/min) can be integrated into the same valve manifold for applications requiring less flow, adding efficiency and saving on control costs.

Aventics AV05 Manifold

The AVENTICS AV05 Advanced Valve system can be configured online and features airflow up to 0.7 Cv.  Photo courtesy of Aventics.

The AV05 features a fast switching time of less than 13 milliseconds for all valve functions, so highly dynamic action is guaranteed for short cycles. The AV03’s switching time is eight milliseconds. The AV series valves comply with IP65 protection, allowing the valve system to be installed in decentralized locations, even in environments exposed to splash water. Up to 128 coils and 10 I/O modules can be supported in one valve manifold. The valves on the DorPack machines control the cylinders, various formatting and welding processes, and other pneumatic systems.

 

Designed for Long Service Life and More

With a life expectancy of over 150 million cycles, the AV valves provide a long service life, and are easily adapted to an Industry 4.0 set-up if desired. For example, the AES controls easily interface with an IoT gateway or hub, such as the Aventics Smart Pneumatics Monitor, to provide data gathering and processing functionality. On request, this module can monitor the current energy consumption or the degree of wear on the pneumatic components, for example. Users can then take the appropriate steps to optimize for increased energy efficiency, or to minimize machine downtime by analyzing component life expectancy data and practicing predictive maintenance before problems arise.

Doroti’s design time for the components was reduced due to availability of online configurators. The configurators save time by easily providing the available options to be selected and arranged, including accessory items. The designer can then obtain an immediate part number for the entire factory-assembled and tested device, and get 2D/3D CAD files, illustration PDF, bill of materials, repair parts and more. The part number is loaded into the Aventics ERP system and is ready to build when the order is placed.

With the factory-assembled and tested AV05 valve manifolds being delivered ready for installation, Doroti saves time setting up its machines. In addition, the AES electronics with fieldbus connection for the valves ensures optimum communication between the controller, actuators and machine peripherals. The efficient communication reduces machine build time and troubleshooting.

The sophisticated automation design of Doroti Pack’s machines enables operators to change over to different product sizes and types with one touch of a button. During a changeover, the machine controller sends the new operating parameters via AES to the AV05 valves. Immediately after the format switch, the machine accelerates to the maximum speed of 16 cycles per minute.

 

Success Builds Upon Success

Doroti and Aventics have a long-lasting business relationship, with a proven track record of efficient, durable packaging machines as a result. In addition, the need for preventive maintenance by the end-user has been minimal thanks to the reliability of the pneumatic components and other measures taken by the OEM. For example, Doroti equips the thermoformer on these machines with a double die to extend the time needed for die replacement. Careful design considerations such as these have made Doroti very successful in the packaging industry. 

 

About Aventics

Emerson’s Aventics is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of pneumatic components, systems, and customer-specific applications. The pneumatic engineering company provides products and services for industrial automation, additionally focusing on the sectors of commercial vehicles, food and beverage, railway technology, life sciences, energy, and marine technology. By integrating electronics, the use of innovative materials and prioritizing trends such as machine safety and the Internet of Things, Aventics is a pioneer in intelligent and easy-to-use solutions.

About Emerson

Emerson (NYSE: EMR), headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), is a global technology and engineering company providing innovative solutions for customers in industrial, commercial and residential markets. The Emerson Automation Solutions business helps process, hybrid and discrete manufacturers maximize production, protect personnel and the environment while optimizing their energy and operating costs. The Emerson Commercial & Residential Solutions business helps ensure human comfort and health, protect food quality and safety, advance energy efficiency and create sustainable infrastructure. For more, visit www.emerson.com.

 

For more information, contact Daniel Math, Sales Engineer, Aventics, email: daniel.math@aventics.com, or visit www.aventics.com/us.

To read similar Food Industry articles, please visit www.airbestpractices.com/industries/food.