Blister Print & Inspect

Metapack supply Digiline Blister for in-line and off-line Blister Print and Inspect of blister single.

Digiline Blister machine has been conceived and realised for the late stage customization of filled and sealed blisters, i.e. by printing on the aluminium surface of each single blister with the industry proven DOD UV technology. Blister Print and Inspect Machine can be used as a stand-alone unit or in line, feeding the cartoner or being fed by the blister machine.

The printing process relies on the industry-proven DOD UV digital printing system, widely used in many sectors for digital high-quality printing. Digiline blister machine can be equipped with one or more heads, each one providing one single colour print and with print width of 36, 72  or 144 mm.

The final curing is provided by the “SMARTCURE” unit, a UV lamp which activates the ink polymerisation (curing) in a fraction of a second, i.e. immediately compared to the travel speed.

After being printed, the blisters travel under the Inspection camera which can provide two main types of inspections:

Because Blister print and Inspect is on an aluminium surface, the camera system works with a linear camera associated to an illumination system which assures for no reflections are generated by the aluminium, for guaranteeing a correct image acquisition of the printed layout.

This  solution  assures  for  optimal  performances  with minimum space requirements and, more important, with a fixed mechanical set-up which is independent from the blister dimensions.

Blister Inspection Metapack Solutions

The Camera inspection system is integrated in the machine HMI and operates with pre-recorded recipes, integrated in the overall recipes of the machine. The inspection technology is based on Cognex technology. In  case  print  full  quality  inspection  is  required,  the  inspection  software  relies  on  a  different  application.

Blister Solutions Metapack
Single Blister Machine Metapack
Single Blister Machine Metapack

KEY FEATURES

  • Multiple levels of access (Operator, Supervisor, Administrator..)
  • Capability to handle a virtually unlimited numbers of recipes, managed by an internal database engine (Microsoft SQL Server)
  • Simple and intuitive MMI. All alarms and machine status notifications are displayed within the MMI. Alarm are displayed with a short description and with the code of the component that has generated the alarm
  • Any parameter related to the print layout and machine vision inspection can be managed and adjusted within the MMI, without any need of using the native control SW of the print and machine vision devices. Parameter set-up is password protected according to the access level
  • Definition of the print layout carried out directly within the MMI: no need to define “print files” with the native software of the printing engine
  • Auto-resize of the print and inspection areas for variable data. E.g. if a string contains one more character, the camera systems extends the inspection area accordingly and automatically, without the need of using the machine vision native software
  • Auto-positioning of the print and inspection areas for variable data. E.g. in adjusting the print layout, the operator can drag the position of a string in a different position: the HMI automatically moves the inspection area on the camera job accordingly
  • Composition of the 2D code according to GS1 standards. Recipes definition includes a “wizard” feature for the personalised definition of the GS1 fields
  • Multiple date format for human readable fields: recipe definition includes a wizard tool for the personalised definition of the date format (eg. mm yyyy) with or without separators
  • MMI structure can be customised and integrated with custom views and custom reports defined jointly with the customer
  • The HMI integrates a “LOG “ system which records every and each sensible event during the operation of the machine, i.e operator logged in, active recipe, start-stop conditions, alarm conditions modification of the recipe and so on. This tool allows to trace the machine usage and configuration over time
  • CFR21 PART 11 compliance. The machine traces any operator logged in and maintains every version of the recipes over time. The AUDIT/TRAIL section of the MMI allows to review every version of the recipe and to reconfigure the system back at a certain status date
  • The creation or modification of the recipe is wizard assisted and can be done by personnel with any specific background on vision systems (still with the appropriate access profile)
  • The HMI has been conceived also serialised print and inspection. Serialised numbers can be fetched by a local or remote database. Alternatively, the HMI has its own module for the generation (and for the reporting) of the serialised numbers printed
  • Reporting section with several reports available (production, rejects, log, serialisation missions and soon.)
  • Possibility to integrate a “hand held” 2D reader on board the machine for the management of the rejects, for data verification or for data entry (e.g. the recipe and variable data could be red for automatic recipe set-up)
  • Remote assistance. The machine can be accessed from a remote position for trouble shooting or fine tuning. It only necessary to bring an Ethernet connection with internet services on the Ethernet hub.
Blister Single Inspection Metapack
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Digiline Blister

The machine provides for complete encoder-based position tracking of the blisters from the moment they are  discharged  onto  the  inner  conveyor.  The  print  and  inspection  sequence  is  under  the  continuous surveillance  of  the  PLC.  If  the  blister  does  not  pass  the  camera  inspection,  it  is  rejected  by  an  air  jet immediately  after  the camera  station.  The machine  includes  the  reject control:  if  a  failed  product  is  detected  at  the  exit  of  the machine,  a  dedicated  alarm  is  generated  (wrong  sequence).  The  same  alarm  is  generated  if  a  blister reaches the exit check-point at the wrong position (e.g a blister slipped on the conveyor).

The  encoder-tracking  position  and  sequence  management  is  a  proven  solution  which  works  on  every mark& verify systems.

The  Digiline  Blister  Single  machine  is  equipped  with  a  specific  system  that  guarantees  that  the  blister  is conveyed  flat  under  the  printing  head.  It  is  normal to  have  curved  blisters,  especially  if  they  have  been produced hours or days in advance. Because the plastic support stabilises after a certain time, the blisters are slightly concave on the plastic side. The ink is ejected along a nozzle row orientated across the conveying direction; it is important to have a fairly constant distance between the jet and the surface in order to have a good printing process. That is why  the blister have to be conveyed flat when they travel underneath the printing head.

For this purpose the machine conveyor is composed by two belts running parallel and at a distance which is adjustable according to the blister dimension. Of course they run exactly at the same speed and they can be  opened  or  closed  symmetrically  with  reference to the  machine  centre  line,  which  is  fixed.  When  the blisters approach the printing head the space between the two belts is equipped with a central vacuum belt with sucking holes acting on the central part of the blister. This belt is precisely adjustable in height: in case of blisters with a central row of pockets, the belts positioned at the same conveying height and therefore the belt maintains the blister flat by the suction of the central pockets.

Digiline Blister single machine has been conceived and realised for the late stage customization of filled and sealed blisters, i.e. by printing on the aluminium surface of each single blister  with the industry proven DOD UV technology. The machine can be used as a stand-alone unit or in line, feeding the cartoner or being fed by the blister machine.

The printing process relies on the industry-proven DOD UV digital printing system, widely used in many sectors for digital high-quality printing. Digiline Blister machine can be equipped with one or more heads, each one providing one single colour print and with print width of 36, 72  or 144 mm.

The final curing is provided by the “SMARTCURE” unit, a UV lamp which activates the ink polymerisation (curing) in a fraction of a second, i.e. immediately compared to the travel speed.

After being printed, the blisters travel under the Inspection camera which can provide two main types of inspections:

  • OCR/OCV of variable data and ID control of barcodes (1D and 2D) –
  • Full print quality inspection (option)

Because the print is on an aluminium surface, the camera system works with a linear camera associated to an illumination system which assures for no reflections are generated by the aluminium, for guaranteeing a correct image acquisition of the printed layout