Quantum Leap for Infiana: Entering the World of Robotics
Automated Slitting Technology Doubles Specialty Films Producer‘s Machine Output
Forchheim (Germany) – For Infiana, the start-up of an automatic slitter is yet another milestone in the company’s history. Going forward, unloading rolls after the slitting process will be a fully automated endeavor. This means that machine output will almost double even as the physical demands placed on workers are reduced. Gerald Dittrich, Operations Director EMEA, calls the new machinery a ‘quantum leap‘ for the business: “This innovative robotics technology, engineered specifically to meet Infiana’s needs, translates to a significant competitive advantage and will noticeably push our company forward.“
An investment of nearly 1 million euro
As part of its global growth plan, Infiana announced its intentions to purchase a new slitter in 2015. 18 months have passed since then. The conception and development of the robotics technology – specifically tailored to Infiana – required intense preparation. Delivery alone took seven months. The total value of the acquisition came to nearly 1 million euro. “With this equipment, we are investing in the future whilst continuing our successful growth trajectory,” says Gernot Becker, General Manager EMEA in Forchheim.
Robotic technology allows more precise slitting
The new production equipment is the first time Infiana has deployed robotics. Until now, finished rolls of film had to be removed and loaded by hand. With the new slitter, this work will be carried out by the machine itself. A genuine advantage – especially for machine operators, as Production Leader Gerald Dittrich explains: “The line is optimally designed from an ergonomic standpoint. Physically strenuous activities will now be largely handled by the robotics. This automation significantly increases the machine’s output while making work easier for our operators. It will play an important role in ensuring that our older workers are not physically overtaxed. In this manner, we have also found a solution to some of the evolving challenges posed by demographic shifts.” Slitters are employed at the end of the production process. They cut the larger rolls of film down to the widths and lengths required by customers. With the new slitter, it is now possible to cut to narrower areas than before.
Slitter is part of a larger investment package
The new slitter is part of a global investment package of some 20 million euros into Infiana’s locations in Forchheim (Deutschland), Malvern (USA) and Samutsakorn (Thailand). Following the start-up of a new extruder last fall and the new slitter this month, the company plans to install additional coating and printing equipment and upgrade one of its existing extruders.
Infiana Germany GmbH & Co. KG
Tel: +49 9191 81-0
About the Infiana Group:
The Infiana Group develops and produces engineered and innovative films for the consumer market and industry. The Group employs about 800 people at its three sites, located in Forchheim (Germany), Malvern (USA) and Samutsakorn (Thailand). Infiana serves the Personal Care (film products for packaging of hygiene items), Health Care (release films, process films and films for packaging), Building & Construction (release films and surface films), Composites (release films and process films), and Pressure Sensitive (silicone-coated release films) markets. In 2016, the Infiana Group generated a turnover of 200 million euros. Further information is available online at www.infiana.com .