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Space Saving Multilane Inspection Systems

Featured Product from Fortress Technology, Inc.

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For snack and food-to-go producers, high-speed packing, weight, and fill systems are essential to generating more products to meet consumer demands. However, given the fast-paced nature of these processing lines, inspection systems need to match upstream and inline speeds to avoid production accumulations, machine stoppages, and potentially higher waste.

One of the ways in which companies can save line space is to opt for multi-aperture inspection systems. These systems have multiple lanes travelling through a single detector body with multiple aperture openings, inspecting and independently rejecting contaminated packs. Each aperture is much smaller, with less overall product effect and more consistent product presentation. This results in better performance and substantial reduction in waste for every contamination event. Consolidating this multi-aperture technology into one unit can also reduce the equipment footprint by over 50%, minimize overall installation costs and optimize TCO as maintenance and demand for replacement parts can  be significantly lower.

By maximizing every unit of floorspace, processors can increase production capacity and add growth value. These investments in space-saving, efficient inspection units also support expansion without having to increase physical footprints or employ more workers to oversee production.

One of the earliest companies to install a space-saving, multi-lane, Fortress twin-aperture metal detector was Borgesuis Bakery. From the start, the system gave the bakery the capacity to quality check approximately 3,600 loaves per hour. To keep pace with their growing number of orders, minimal floorspace prohibited the industrial bakery from running two conveyors close together.

Similarly, a large North American dairy plant specified a dual-lane, combination metal detection and checkweighing unit to inspect cheese products tightly spaced together. Due to lack of factory floorspace, these two companies both required a more efficient, smaller-footprint machine.

The lanes, metal detector apertures, checkweighers and reject devices are programmed to run independently. For both manufacturers, this enables two different product lines, pack sizes, and SKUs to run simultaneously on the adjacent conveyors. Rejected products are separated to reduce waste and prevent false rejects. Most importantly, the compact inspection systems were installed alongside existing processing equipment without having to completely restructure the plant layout.

Compared to installing separate machines, these innovative inspection solutions typically double a processors’ inspection throughput in a machine footprint that is usually 50% smaller. If one lane drops offline for any reason, the remaining lanes can continue to run independently. Fortress has engineered these systems in 2, 3, 4 and 5 lane configurations.