Strength of scalable pouch system is its flexibility

By Lisa McTigue Pierce in Form-Fill-Seal on May 11, 2017

Scalability of a packaging machine means inevitable changes in the future are covered. But what about meeting today’s demanding needs for flexibility?

The new Sigpack VPF (Vertical Platform Flat) four-side-sealed pouch machine from Bosch Packaging can do both. Because of its uniquely engineered design, it’s easy to scale up from two to 12 lanes. But its production flexibility might be the real advantage.

First, a description of the new design, which is modular: Each lane on this flat pouch system has its own filling tube for totally separate dosing from the other lanes. This means each lane could be filled with the same or different product—mainly powders like sugar, toiletries or food supplements.

Additionally, the width of each lane can be different from the others because the cross seals are also modular and tied to each lane. This means the machine can run different pouch configurations at the same time. It could produce a two (or more) -component pouch, with each component a different width and containing a different product. Slitting between lanes is also flexible. The only constant is the pouch length (both sides in a two-component pouch, for examples, would be the same length).

The system operates at 150 cycles per minute, which gives it the possible maximum output of 1,800 pouches per minute.

 

Intuitive “Industry 4.0” controller

Seen at the Bosch Packaging booth at interpack 2017, the Sigpack VPF uses the company’s new intuitive HMI 4.0 controller, which has been rolled out globally on all Bosch Packaging machines. The design is based on research of user experiences (through interviews, as well as observations) and uses a logical step-by-step approach to guide the user through each task/operation. A main dashboard immediately conveys critical information to operators; another dashboard does the same for maintenance technicians.

Colors on the HMI tie into a stack light to indicate:

In production = green

Message = yellow

Stopped / error = red

 

In 2016, Bosch won the German Packaging Award for innovation with a prototype of the Sigpack VPF. I wouldn’t be surprised if it earns more accolades from users of the system.

 

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