8 impressive developments in packaging automation

By John R. Henry in Automation on May 30, 2019

Packaging machinery, robots and engineering expert John R. Henry reports on the cool stuff he saw at recent automation and materials handling events.


Packaging Digest should know better than to send me to the Automate/ProMat show. It’s like giving a kid a credit card and sending them to the toy store. I spent two days wandering around and taking it all in. Lots of innovation and lots of cool stuff. Here are a few of the things that impressed me.

1. Wedding bells!

Articulated arm robots have been around for a long time. So have Autonomous Mobile Robots or AMRs (also called AGV’s in the past). It was only a matter of time before someone thought of marrying the two. One problem has been the need to cage normal robots for safety. Collaborative robots eliminate that need.

Olympus Controls demonstrated a Universal Robots collaborative arm mounted on an AMR. The addition of the robot arm allows the AMR to be completely autonomous, including loading and unloading. Looks like a match made in engineers’ heaven.  


NEXT: Skeletor is here


John R. Henry

Known as the Changeover Wizard, John R. Henry is the owner of Changeover.com, a consulting firm that helps companies find and fix the causes of inefficiencies in their packaging operations. He has written the book, literally, on packaging machinery (www.packmachbook.com) and is the face and personality behind packaging detective KC Boxbottom, the main character in Adventures in Packaging, a popular blog on packagingdigest.com. He can be contacted at [email protected].

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