Ely company’s innovative robot machine helping global manufacturer cut costs

Innomech'’s printer ribbon assembly machine.

Innomech'’s printer ribbon assembly machine. - Credit: Archant

An Ely based company has created a machine to help an international manufacturer cut costs.

GB Innomech has built a spool pairing and assembly machine to help ITW Imagedata (ITW) produce film ribbons for security and identity cards.

The machine needs just one operator, whereas the previous process involved six people.

It uses a robot with a laser-guided 3D vision system to load spools into the machine.

The robot scans the box of wound spools, works out the depth and position of components, before picking up groups of wound spools, verifying they are correctly orientated and loading them into the machine.

A separate loading system feeds empty spools from a hopper before the ends are fitted and locked in place.

David Parmenter, operations manager at ITW, said: “Innomech’s automation specialists worked alongside our in-house team to automate a series of intricate manufacturing tasks and to ensure their solution fits perfectly into our existing workflows.”