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Weightron Bilanciai has designed and installed a bespoke gravimetric liquid filling system for food and beverage specialist Giorgio’s Continental at its 7,000m2 plant in Newthorpe near Nottingham.

The multi-line articulated-arm filling system, which includes a fully sealed, ultra-low-profile LPS stainless-steel floor scale, three food grade pumps and a quick-connect stainless-steel filling lance, is used to fill various-sized containers from 25kg up to 1,000kg with wine, beer and vinegar.

Overall control of the system is carried out by a programmable Weightron terminal, which ensures that the correct product is filled and records details of each filling.

The semi-automatic system is designed so that no cross contamination can occur with the different products.

In parallel, the hygienic design of the filling system ensures that regular cleaning can be carried out expediently within designated food safety guidelines.

At the beginning of a drum filling cycle, a pallet containing up to 16 empty containers is placed on the LPS scale.

The design of the articulated arm, with its integrated operator control panel, means that the filling heads can be positioned over the drums one at a time.

The filling process for the first container is then initiated by the operator via the articulated arm’s controls.

Having tared out the weight of the empty containers, the system fills at normal speed up to 95 per cent of the required target weight, before automatically switching over to trickle feed to attain an accurate fill volume.

The operator then fills the other containers on the pallet in turn, the system automatically taring out the scale each time.

A second pallet containing a further 16 drums can then be placed on top of the first and the process can be repeated.

For filling larger IBCs, the quick-connect filling lance is used.

This technique, whereby the liquid travel distance can be maintained at a minimum distance from the liquid surface, avoids unwanted frothing.

Where necessary, the lance can also be used on smaller drums and is suitable for beer.

Tony Trudino, production manager at Giorgio’s, said: ‘Our original manual system was very laborious and depended on operator judgement to turn the supply off when the target weight was reached.

‘The Weightron system is very efficient, giving us excellent accuracy and versatility without running the risk of cross contamination.

‘The automatic filling control removes operator error,’ he added.

Weightron Bilanciai

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