ABB Robotics, Auburn Hills, Mich., has added an 8-kg model to its IRB 360 FlexPicker line, supplementing the existing 1 kg and 3 kg models. It expands the high-speed picking and packing performance of widely used Delta robots to heavier items. The robots are noted for providing greater flexibility and versatility than hard automation. The 8-kg version of the IRB 360 robot has been re-engineered to handle higher payloads and improved pick-and-place performance. The new design includes a redesigned carbon fiber arm-set, a new delta plate designed to handle larger weights and inertias, and improved motion tuning. The new unit also features a deeper (350 mm) work envelope than the other 1,130 mm reach FlexPicker models.
“The 8 kg FlexPicker provides a robust solution for handling larger individual products, and, in multi-product pick applications, more products can be handled per cycle,” says Rick Tallian consumer products segment manager, ABB Robotics, North America. “This new model will provide our customers a wider range of high speed picking robots and improve the overall productivity of the robotic system. For specific applications, such as picking and placing flow wrapped products into cartons, the IRB 360 8 kg version has the ability to handle up to 500 products per minute.”
The upgrade expands the IRB 360 FlexPicker’s other existing advantages, such as a hygienic design for washdown applications, and excellent conveyor tracking performance, including tracking high speed indexing conveyor belts.
The ABB FlexPicker is designed for operation in sanitary environments, and the stainless steel IPK69 rated model withstands the most stringent cleaning operations associated with sanitary product handling.  Multiple variants of work envelopes (800, 1,130 and 1,600 mm), payloads (1kg, 3kg, and 8 kg) are available, all with environmental protection options to meet most application requirements.
In addition to handling flow wrapped products, the IRB 360 FlexPicker is suited for the direct picking and placing of unwrapped food products and pharmaceuticals into primary wrappers; loading meat products into trays; and kitting of personal care products and medical devices into blister packs.  ABB’s PickMaster3 software can be used to integrate advanced vision guidance and inspection capabilities to such processes.http://www.abb.com/robotics