Another excellent application implemented by Gimatic together with Otto Männer are the grippers for picking plastic components from multi-cavity injection moulds. These grippers allow the picking, for example, of inhalers, “drug delivery” solutions, “home car”, hospital products or pipette holders. In this case the difficulty is often constituted by the depth of the mould cavities, with a consequent increase in the weight of the gripper. However, since only small robots with reduced payload are frequently used for these applications, the focus is on a lightweight construction.

The moulds with deep cavities require a protruding footprint, therefore, it is necessary to optimize the position of the components according to the distances between the cavities in the different thermal conditions. This requires active interaction with the mould manufacturer, hence the interfaces and the interfering contours between the robot gripper and the injection mould are considered jointly from the beginning of development. Gimatic’s offer for these grippers starts from small double to 2+2 moulds up to very large versions. A project with 94 cavities measuring 1000×1000 millimetres is currently underway.

There are also applications in which 16, 32 or even more components need to be removed simultaneously. Each printed piece is individually detected by a sensor system and tracked from the moment of picking. The pressure sensors and the controls proceed from the sister company Priamus. The sensors recognize and select defective parts directly in the mould. The information is transmitted to the gripper, which can then reject the non-compliant pieces.

For component status, Gimatic’s new Pross three-point sensor is often used, which can be used to query three positions of a gripper at the same time. This increases the query options with the same weight and footprint.