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How Our Electronic Actuators Helped a Food Manufacturer Soup up Cube Stock Production

How Our Electronic Actuators Helped a Food Manufacturer Soup up Cube Stock Production

The pick-and-place systems in high-speed food manufacturing operations must be fast and precise. And, the equipment you choose must be reliable under hygienic conditions. Too often, conventional sliders don’t provide the maneuverability, positioning accuracy and reliability that high-speed pick-and-place applications demand — especially when installation space is tight.

Recently, a manufacturer of cube stock needed to implement a pick-and-place system for its production and packaging lines. The workspace consists of four production lines, a single transfer point to move the product from the production to the packaging stage and a buffer zone to hold excess stock until it is ready for packaging.

Due to the buffer zone’s length and height constraints, the application called for a compact pick-and-place system. The company considered pneumatic actuators for the system, but those components required a space-consuming air system that would have been difficult to install and maintain. Instead, the food manufacturer chose SM Line compact linear electronic actuators from Automationware.

About Our SM Line

The SM Line — part of our Mech Series available through IKO International at — is well-suited for pick-and-place applications, offering exceptional reliability over time. Features include accuracy to 0.01 millimeter, with complete modeling and control of the motion cycle. Available with strokes from 60 to 420 millimeters, SM electronic linear actuators let you adapt the speed to your desired load, with maximum speeds up to 2 meters per second, an acceleration up to 3G and a maximum force of 3,000 N — more than enough speed acceleration to meet the food manufacturer’s requirements.

Additional features and benefits include:

  • Programmable motion curves.
  • Minimal maintenance with no calibration.
  • High productivity — greater than 100 cycles per minute.

You can see the setup in this video:

Not only did the SM Line meet the food manufacturer’s motion criteria in a compact unit, it also eliminated the need to add a regulation device, providing further space savings. Taken together, the SM Series electronic linear actuator is performing effectively in the cube stock application without the complexity and higher cost of using pneumatic technology.

IKO is the U.S. distribution partner for Automationware. You can download our brochure on SM Series sliders at, or contact IKO at for more information.

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