Modified elmor seed counters make it possible to precisely fill small nut mix snack packs.
Mixtures of different components with varyingsizes, shapes and unit weights are usually mixed mechanically and then dosed either volumetrically or by weight. When a sufficient amount is dispensed, the mixture contains all components, but this is not always the case with small packs.
This effect was evident in a company that produces nut mixtures. The smaller the pack size, the greater the risk that the customer only had some of the desired varieties in his snack bag.
For this task, elmor Ltd. was commissioned to develop a special dosing system. Mixtures with a maximum of 5 different types of nuts must be dosed in such a way that, on the one hand, all components are present in the finished package and, on the other hand, that the prescribed minimum weight is achieved. These different types of nuts have diameters ranging from approximately 10 mm to 40 mm and can be raw, salted or covered in chocolate.
In the project being carried out, the various components are fed and separated using linear conveyor lines from a 25-liter storage container per type. The various components are then counted in parallel with 5 separate part sensors. The sensors are based on the established and surable optical detectors of the C1Maxi counting machine, which have been adapted to detect a range of up to 40 mm width. The counted nuts then fall into a weighing pan.
Once the desired quantity of a variety for the respective recipe has been reached, the corresponding supply conveyor stops. This means that the mixing ratio is achieved with high precision. The recipes can be changed or adjusted at any time using the control’s touchscreen.
Since the packs are sold by weight – e.g., 30 g – after the piecewise dosage, the weight of the mixture is compared with the target weight. If the mixture is underweight, a preselected component is added until the target weight is correct.
The portion is subsequently transferred to a packaging machine using a cup elevator, and the cycle time per pack is just a few seconds. Packs with missing nut varieties are now a thing of the past.
The sensors of the elmor seed counting devices once again prove their universal application potential. With seeds, they can capture dust-fine particles from 0.1 mm like in the C1 and C3 counting machine. And in this example nuts with a diameter of up to 40mm.