Synchro 24, a counting solution that guarantees top counting precision even at high production rates
This monobloc is designed and manufactured to manage high production rates (up to 150 vials a minute), at the same time guaranteeing top counting precision. This dual success is due to the combined use of a "twin flap" technology, which doubles the 12 channels of each counting unit without increasing the number of contact parts, and a synchronised-dynamic conveyance system that transfers the counted product into the vial as the vial itself is fed along the line. The efficiency of the production process – from the upstream phase of counting to the insertion of the cotton, right through to capping – is backed by a mechanical structure that ensures straightforward cleaning and size change over operations, as well as the containment of any dust produced. The outcome is a fast and reliable counting machine, which accommodates the best counting and reject systems presently available for Track & Trace operations.
The machine starts with a Sirio 3 “Code” infeeder that can turn round, square, oval and rectangular vials. Once they have been arranged in the correct position by the carousel with 10 stations equipped with a 90° rotation system, the vials are infed to the next station where an ink-jet or laser printer prints a barcode or datamatrix code on their bottoms. They are then cleaned internally by a filtered air jet spraying system; any dust created is not scattered but removed by an extraction system built into the base of the machine or installed externally. A camera in this same station can verify the codes. In the following two stations, the vial is turned by 90° until it is vertical. A flap takes it out of the carousel and sends it to the outlet with the so-called "Fail-safe" procedure because it automatically rejects vials with unread or incorrect codes.
Speed and precision
The productive efficiency of the Synchro unit is based on a “twin flap” system, which splits the 12 channels of each counting unit into two, thus creating a double counter for each unit. This technology has been exploited for the first time ever without separating the vibrating plates that convey and distribute the product, and without changing the number of parts that come into contact with it. To manage the boosted speed of the counting units, the machine utilises a synchronised-dynamic conveyance system, the real heart of the Synchro technology. It is indeed thanks to this system that it is possible to guarantee 100% precise counts, still keeping the production rates high. To simplify size changeovers, the positive motion vial conveyance system in the counting monobloc adjusts itself automatically to compensate for dimensional variations (diameter and height) in the vials used.
New cotton insertion unit
The new cotton insertion unit too is the outcome of attentive analysis of the most commonly encountered operating problems. The two sacks of cotton are positioned in a dedicated seat created at the back of the monobloc, which is perfectly accessible from the outside but carefully isolated from the filling zone. The conveyance system of the cotton tape exploits some transfer cups arranged in a horizontal position, which are then arranged vertically when the cotton is transferred into the vials. This technical solution avoids transferring the dust produced when the cotton is torn. In fact, the dust generated during the tearing phase is removed by the suction ports in the collection area.
The capping unit
The machine ends with a silent and flexible Eco400 feeder that feeds the caps used to close the vials filled in the previous steps. The capping unit rests on a rotary 8-spindle system and each spindle is managed individually by a dedicated brushless drive. This means that working spaces are smaller while speeds are boosted, thus making this Synchro 24 an innovative and reliable counting solution.