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Schmalz: Guaranteeing Vacuum Automation for Cobots

Philip Mani , Managing Director

Philip Mani

Managing Director

Piloting vacuum automation and ergonomic handling solutions, Schmalz has been catering services for various applications in the automotive, electronics, FMCG, Glass, logistics, wood industry etc. The company, headquartered in Pune,has a wide range of products in the Vacuum Automation unit including individual components such as suction cups and vacuum generators, complete gripping systems and clamping solutions for holding work pieces. Philip J Mani, Managing Director of Schmalz, describes the efforts and engagements of the company in the Vacuum technology in detail.

In conversation with Philip J Mani, Managing Director, Schmalz

Recent advancements in automation in industrial production are focused on flexibility and quality. How are the fluctuation acknowledged in the business and how is Schmalz positioned in the market?
I believe that Schmalz is positioned very well due to the flexibility of its products. We have developed many products as per the demand of the automation in Industrial production. Packaging and FMCG industry is changing rapidly and the handling tasks are demanding more flexibility in the products. Schmalz works closely with customers and introduces new products that meet their requirements. We constantly update our product offerings to satisfy customers in terms of the productivity, cost effectiveness, long term investment basis and also being eco friendly.

What are the services provided by

Schmalz to the customers in terms of Industrial Automation and Robotics?
Of course automation increases the productivity and also creates an ergonomic working condition. Certain tasks which are repetitive in nature can be automated and thus benefited with maximum error free production. We keep human interventions at minimal level and take care of the ergonomics at the workplace so that the required task can be carried out with good productivity. We have currently developed products suitable for Cobots which have the same sensitivity like a cobot and which can work with humans, our Cobot Gripper, Cobot Pump ECBPi are user friendly and easy to install, as we also provide the necessary software which can be installed with the cobot software.

We keep human interventions at minimal level and take care of the ergonomics at the workplace so that the required task can be carried out with good productivity

Brief us about the vacuum automation and ergonomic handling solutions of Schmalz?
In Vacuum automation, we have a comprehensive range of individual vacuum components needed to set up own vacuum systems. Ready to connect gripper systems are individually configured by our experienced system consultants. Our customers benefit from cut throat innovative solutions in all areas of automation. The variety of work pieces handled by the Vacuum ranges from electronic chip and solar wafers to furniture parts, or even heavy steel sheets. We offer handling technology for manual lifting tasks, where it consists of a vacuum lifter such as a tube lifter Jumbo or a lifting device Vacu Master and a compatible crane system. The effort required with aluminium crane systems from Schmalz

is significantly lower as compared to conventional crane systems made of steel. The user saves more than 60 percent of the force and can handle heavy loads effort lessly and safely. Vacuum clamping technology for wood processing is essential for efficient grid, flat and console table system setup.

As a company which has been in operation for the last 21 years in India, what is that particular incident which comes to your mind where you successfully carried out a project for the customer?
There are quite a few number of success stories in our engagements centred on Vacuum handling technology. In a recent one in the energy saving for an automotive industry player we helped them save air for vacuum generator to nearly 80 percent of the compressed air usage in the industrial plant. We showcased our product along with actual measurements to convince the customer and later deployed at bigger level to show them the actual air saving which they could achieve. We had the customer’s trust to replace all their existing vacuum generators with our new series of air saving vacuum generators and to their benefit the payback period was only a few months.

Industrial automation is on the thres hold of a new revolution, moving through rapid technology changes and looking toward interoperability of devices and systems. What have you conceived for Schmalz in the years to come?
Industry 4.0 is the current trend of automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies. It includes cyber physical systems, the Internet of things and cloud computing. Industry 4.0 creates what has been called a smart factory. Schmalz has already started to align its products suitable for Industry 4.0. The SCPSi compact ejectors and SNGiAE type needle grippers are already equipped with IO link and NFC technology, making them suitable for Industry 4.0, thus facilitating the way to communicate and cooperate in real time. Schmalz will roll out more products in this technology which is going to drive the future.

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