Page 12 - Grapevine JanFeb 2021_REV
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In The Winery

               fill level, cap and cork closure inspections, followed   If your line utilizes a liquid rinser before the filler,
               by label inspections. An improperly filled or labeled   there is available technology to detect any residual
               bottle is simply harmful to the brand consistency,   liquid left from the rinsing function as well. When a
               while a bottle that is not properly closed can be    rejection occurs, there are a number of options to
               a problem further down the line, particularly in     how the bottling lines can manage that. FT System
               the casing application. An open or leaking bottle    inspection units can push the bottle off of the line,
               in a case causes issues either in the warehouse or   or we can sound an audio alarm or, if desired, we
               while in transit. These inspections are the easiest to  can send a signal that would immediately halt the
               implement and are proven to be cost-effective. The  line. It’s the user’s preference. The most common
               more important inspections are those that identify   way for systems to reject a defective glass situa-
               a hazard to the consumer. These inspections detect  tion from the line is by using a standing rejector to
               things like a chipped finish in the bottle, a foreign   guide the bottles off from the line without knocking
               object inside the bottle, or some other defect in    them over. The reject device is always a critical part
               the glass that increases the potential of the bottle   of any overall inspection system.”
               to fail. These inspections prove to be more critical
               in the wineries that manage bulk glass or use auto-    Reardon said that because the wine sector tra-
               matic uncasers.”                                     ditionally uses round glass, the EBI systems are
                                                                    designed and optimized to manage that traditional
                 Automated in-line inspection systems are           round shape. But EBI systems will work on nearly
               designed to inspect 100% of the contents in a con-   any color or shape of glass bottle, including round,
               sistent, repeatable and measurable way. Unlike       square, rectangular and flask shapes. FT System’s
               their human inspector counterparts, they don’t       empty bottling inspection systems are flexible
               impart any environmental interpretations or          enough to easily change from one size or color to
               change their inspection parameters due to weari-     another while having the ability to store a large
               ness, distractions, daydreams or some other type     library of recipes to accommodate the different
               of inattentiveness. Machines inspect every bottle    types of glass a winery will use throughout its pro-
               using the same parameters every time. Suppose        duction.
               the inspection system detects any defects or mis-
               applied labels. In that case, the line workers will be     Empty bottle inspections are just one of the
               alerted and allowed to take immediate corrective     many bottling line inspection systems available.
               action versus waiting until the problem is detected   “Inspection systems on the bottling line are typical-
               further down the line in the packaging application   ly stand-alone units at different locations along the
               or during a routine quality control check. If inspec-  line to perform whatever inspections are desired,”
               tion applications detect that a filler or labeler is   said Reardon. “Glass inspection is done before
               trending out of the desired tolerance or calibration   the filler to remove any defective glass before it
               settings, the operator will be able to take preventa-  is filled with product. Fill level and closure inspec-
               tive action before an issue arises that would halt or   tions are placed after the filler, capper and corker
               disrupt production.                                  block. A system performing label inspections would
                                                                    be located after the labeler and a case inspector
                 “An Empty Bottle Inspection system is commonly     immediately after the caser or case sealer. FT
               found on lines that run either bulk glass or lines   System inspection units are modular, so they are
               that have automated uncasers,” said Reardon.         easily added, combined and mixed to meet every
               “It is located before the filler and uses a series   client’s unique needs.”
               of cameras with specific lenses and illumination.
               By design, it looks for defects in the bottle glass,     Operator and maintenance training is critical to
               incorrect bottle sizes or foreign objects that may be  the success of any piece of machinery on a bottling
               inside the bottle. More specifically, the systems will  line, and Reardon said that the expectations for an
               inspect the individual bottle’s complete outer sur-  automated inspection system are no different. But
               face, including the finish, threads, neck and base.   the level of operator and maintenance training var-

               Page 10                         The Grapevine • January - February 2021                            877-892-5332

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