Marchesini’s ML 661 filling machine is developed specifically to handle highly viscous materials and the product feeding hopper is thermo-regulating to maintain the right temperature of the liquid in case of machine stoppage.
The dosing circuit comprises a series of Ketron Peek valves in steel containers, coupled with stainless steel syringes. Ketron Peek is a plastic material approved by FDA that guarantees excellent performances with highly viscous materials.
The bottles are transported in a range of pucks. Each dosing nozzle is equipped with a valve/shutter with an air blowing system that stops the flow when necessary to avoid spillage during the filling cycle. A WAP (washing in place) and CIP (clean in place) system are also present.
The screw capping station of the ML 661 capping machine is designed to provide a pre-capping operation, to within 1mm of the end of the capping stroke. The final screw-capping motion is performed by a specific capping group, with the link belt at the end of the machine. The capping group has three screwing heads, each with a brushless motor that guarantees a precise closure to apply the screwing torque safely and gently. Additionally, the use of brushless motors allow the possibility to check any anomaly with the screwing torque (for example, detecting the missing cap when the torque is not successful).
There are two main reasons for the use of two capping stations: the first to obtain a correct cap placement and a gentle reaching of the end stroke. Being a beauty care product, it’s necessary for the cap opening to be always correctly aligned with the lateral side of the bottle. The second reason is to dose the right torque value. This always guarantees to reach the end stroke with gentleness, avoiding any damage.
Following filling is the RA 800 Neri Labeller with PharmaSpec – a system for product inspection by means of camera.
The system incorporates up to three cameras. The first checks the arrival position and, if necessary, orientates the bottle before the application of the label, while the second and third cameras check the conformity of the labelled bottle.
One main characteristic is a de-ionisation system to remove static electricity, which can be generated during unwinding from the labels reel.
After labelling the bottles are inserted into shipper cases, a process carried out by the MCV 850 top-loading casepacker. When the bottles arrive in a single line from the labeller, a Robocombi system places them onto a transfer plate which then transfers them to a picking head that lifts the whole layer of bottles for direct placement into the cases. During the product transfer, a second (empty) plate moves forward to a position in line with the Robocombi to optimise production output and ensure speeds of 120 bottles/min is met.
The empty pucks are then re-circulated towards the head of the machine.
The equipment is completed by a divider feeding unit. Three divider sheets are placed inside the carton, between the bottles, to provide protection from bottle-on-bottle impact-damage.