Robotic Palletizer Cost

7 Key Factors in Determining the Cost of a Robotic Palletizer

What does a robotic palletizer cost?  Unfortunately, the cost of a robotic palletizer depends on so many variables that it is virtually impossible to provide an estimate without evaluating one's needs. Still, here are 7 of the key factors:

1. Robotic Arm Costs

As one would expect, the cost of the robotic palletizing arm is one of the main factors in any cell design and typically is specified based on the following factors.

Turnkey Solutions
Reach

This is the distance from the center of the robot to the furthest extension of the arm. In general, longer reaches typically require more expensive robotic arms.

Totally Accountable
Payload

This is the weight of the object being handled and the end-of-arm-tooling. In general, the heavier the loads, the more expensive the robotic arm.

35+ Years Experience
Speed

While challenging to classify, how fast one needs the robot to operate can affect the arm selection and cost as well.

35+ Years Experience
Axes

For most standard palletizing applications 4-axis robotic arms can be used. However, if the process requires rotating, tilting or some other function, it may require a more expensive 5- or 6-axis robot.

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Special Attributes

Will a standard robotic arm work or is the operation potentially in a freezer environment, requiring a heated jacket to be placed around the arm.

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Supplier

We’ve worked with many robotic arm suppliers and chose to become an Authorized Systems Integrator for FANUC as they have the industry’s best and most robust line of palletizing robots.

2. Special Attributes

Another question to evaluate is whether your environment features extreme temperatures or exposure to chemical or other hazardous conditions that would require protective jackets.

Analysis and Strategy

Case in Point: Frozen Food

In extreme cold environments, like frozen food manufacturing spaces, robots might be wrapped in protective jackets to prevent air lines from freezing.

MOST Case Study

Case in Point: Intense Heat

Hot environments might not only require the robotic arms to be suited with cooling mechanisms, but also electrical and other critical systems.

3. End of Arm Tooling

From vacuum cups and clamps to an endless variety of grippers, the design and configuration of your end-of-arm-tooling can have a profound effect on the cost.  Basic EOAT that simply grabs a case or bag and places it on the pallet tends to be relatively inexpensive, but we often design custom EOAT that performs multiple tasks or handles uniquely shaped or fragile items. 

Case Study:
Vision Guided System

See how we integrated custom end-of-arm-tooling and vision systems to solve a complex issue for Pittsburgh Corning

View Case Study

4. Pallet & Slip Sheet Dispensing

Since every palletizing system requires a constant flow of pallets and many require slip sheets, the process for dispensing these items should be considered in its cost estimate. The most common approach is to outfit the cell with automated dispensers, but for operations with slow line speeds, the robotic arm can often be programmed to do the dispensing.  This eliminates the cost of the dispenser(s), but requires more programming and custom EOAT.

Analysis and Strategy

Automatic Dispensers

Technology

Robotic Dispensers

5. Upstream Equipment Integration

While upstream systems may not directly impact the cost of a robotic palletizer, they will affect one's ability to integrate them.  Many robotic palletizers feature 1-in/1-out or 2-in/2-out systems for which standard, proven designs can be used to keep costs to a minimum. For others, however, upstreams systems are designed and integrated can have a profound effect on the cost of the palletizer.

Case Study

Complete System Automation

See how we automated an entire picking, packing and palletizing process with one robot and a variety of other automation systems and equipment. 

Case Study

Upstream Innovation

See how we out-engineered our competition by automating the upstream process. Where they proposed two robotic palletizers, we solved the problem with one at a fraction of the cost!

6. Safety

Incorporating the right safety technology into your robotic palletizing system — including scanners, sensors, safety switches and gates — can be a costly but necessary expense.

Achieving Maximum Safety Cost-Effectively

At MMCI Robotics, we achieve many cost efficiencies by designing our cells to be inherently safe - giving operators easy-to-use controls located outside the cell where functions can be monitored and managed. 

7. Controls

In many cases, the costs associated with designing the palletizing system, integrating it with upstream and downstream equipment and developing the controls are the largest factor in the overall cost of the system. MMCI works to keep this cost to a minimum by conducting all work in-house and by utilizing standard and pre-engineered solutions where applicable.

Pre-Engineered Systems

For standard case palletizing applications, we utilize pre-engineered systems that can be easily configured and implemented.

Cost Saving Robotic and Controls Standards

Having designed many robotic palletizing systems, we can re-purpose proven control block routines to reduce costs and lead-time.

Custom

With our in-house controls team, we have the ability to develop custom systems and procedures for your specific needs.

Specifying the Right Palletizer

Wondering which palletizer is best for your application? Learn more about the capabilities, limitations and features of today's wide range of palletizers.

 
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Conventional

Palletizers

For building single SKKU pallets at rapid rates

 
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Standard

Robotic Palletizers

For building common configuration pallets utilizing articulated arms.

 
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Custom

Robotic Palletizers

For building diverse pallet configurations with unique requirements.

How Can We Help?

At any stage of your automation project, we can help.
Call us at 314-438-3300 or fill out the form below.