Carnegie Mellon University

Integrated Innovation Institute

Engineering + Design + Business

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Palletizing for Unique Packages

How can the palletizing system be redesigned for packaging various sized goods?

Manufacturing companies across the world rely on palletizing systems to package and transport their goods. The varying sizes of packages, however, can create dangerous work-zones for manufacturers and harm automated palletizing machines. 

The Solution 

The student team worked with project sponsor Parker Hannifan to create a more efficient and flexible palletizing system. Students designed a vision system that identifies packaging sizes as well as a control panel for operators to identify weights. The system also includes fixed sequences or packaging patterns, so that packages can be organized on the pallet according to an existing pattern, as well as a "live" system which recommends new layouts.

Sampe of Parker Hannifan layout
One of the potential packaging layouts 

Included in the system are four robotic cranes, which move the packages to their appropriate places on the pallet. By utilizing Parker Hannifan's existing hardware and systems, students were able to design a palletizing product suite including a vision systemrobotic arms, a control pan, and pre-programmed stacking patterns.