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When Birds Eye discovered its frozen chicken nuggets boxes were slipping off their Matrix collator/shrink wrapper machine, Linkx Systems were able to solve the problem for free in just a few minutes.

Having used a Matrix collator/shrink wrapper from Linkx Systems for a period of time, Birds Eye decided to install a second machine.

This time, however, there was a minor complication – instead of the cartons entering the machine at high level, in which case their progress into the machine is assisted by gravity, they would enter at low level.

With a small software modification, however, Linkx Systems came up with a solution that involved no extra cost.

The Matrix machines are capable of handling up to 300 cartons per minute – as much as 50 per cent more than typical machines with similar functionality.

An intuitive electronic operator interface, which provides access to diagnostic functions, makes the machine easy and convenient to use.

Linkx Systems states that servo drives are the key to the versatility of the Matrix collator/shrink wrapper.

A ten-axis precision servo system allows all motions to be reliably and accurately controlled, giving total repeatability even when the machine is operating at full throughput.

The most usual infeed arrangement for Linkx Matrix collator/shrink wrappers, however, is for the products to be presented at high level, from where they are carried by a slat-band conveyor at a slight downward angle into the collator.

For the new Birds Eye machine, which would be handling frozen chicken nuggets, this arrangement wasn’t possible.

As the new machine had to be fitted in place of an existing piece of equipment, infeed could only be arranged at low level with the cartons conveyed upwards to the collator.

While the design of the Matrix machine is flexible enough to accommodate this revised arrangement, a small but significant difficulty remained – when the infeed conveyor started and stopped, the icy cartons had a tendency to slip.

While it would have been possible to modify the mechanical design of the infeed to eliminate this problem, the Matrix machine is built around precision servo drives and incorporates a fully programmable control system, meaning that a simpler and more cost-effective solution was possible.

The control software was modified so that the infeed conveyor, instead of just starting and stopping, smoothly ramped up to speed and down to a stop.

Incorporating the software change took just a few minutes and provided a complete solution.

The machine is now in service and is fully meeting all of Birds Eye’s operational requirements.

The inherent flexibility of the Matrix machine, which results from its incorporation of the latest control technologies, meant that Linkx Systems was able to provide Birds Eye with exactly the functionality it needed without the need for potentially costly modifications.

Linkx Systems

Linkx Systems delivers packaging systems, equipment, machinery and stand-alone packaging machines that meet user requirements efficiently and economically and which are backed with expert and readily accessible support.

With more than 30 staff totalling over 200 years of experience in automation and packaging, Linkx Systems delivers packaging solutions, machines and equipment that meet user requirements efficiently and economically.

From our purpose-built Suffolk headquarters we design, develop and manufacture packaging machinery using the latest technology and innovations.

By making best use of modern automation technology, we provide our impressive customer base, which includes many blue chip companies, with packaging machines that not only offer outstanding value for money, but also easily outperform machines available from other sources.

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