Help at Dr. Pepper

My name is Stacy Tyler I work for Dr. Pepper in irving Texas. I have some question I hope you can answer. I have a problem at my bottling plant that I think you might be able to point me in the right direction. I will explain as best I can. I work on a machine that takes full Dr. pepper bottles (and other products of different sizes) and puts them in a box and wraps shrink film over it. The bottles get fed into this machine on conveyors and rails that guide these bottles have to be adjusted (width wise) to make the bottles merge in a certain pattern. If the rails are not adjusted correctly the bottles hang up or fall. Here is a picture of what Im talking about. Those rails that guide these bottles are adjusted on daily basis and sometimes twice a day for different products(some as small as 8oz bottles and some as big as 48oz bottle). They are adjusted by people that make a lot of mistakes which causes down time. I have found a linear actuator with a feedback that can be adjusted accurately. Along with a dc motor controller that can move these rails. What I need help with is how to control them.

I need a a way to control these 26 linear actuators controller

I need advice on the processor, power, data transit, and (copy paste) memory storage I see a lot of options on that seem to be able to control these devices.

Keep in mind if the machine goes down I need to be able to replace parts, processors or software or whatever fails in a quickly. The majority of the processors that control the actuators are very cheap when it comes to Dr. Peppers pocketbook. So we can buy these and keep them in stock on site. So it needs to be able to have the SD card slot for plug and play type situations. I can get harnesses made for plug and play also. … 492318.jpg
What I would like is a touch screen to select different receipts (or should I say a locations for all 26 actuators). So when I select a receipt all 26 actuators go to a specific location. While the machine is running I need to be able to move the actuators in increments to adjust widths of the rails for fine tuning of the receipt and be able to save it for the next time we run that receipt. If the board fails I need to be able to pull the sd card out and put another one in, install the sd card, select a receipt and be running again.

The actuators seem to be the best ones for my application. Although, these controllers are whats suggested for my actuators, if anyone knows of something better for my application please let me know.

Hello, Stacy.

It sounds like you have an interesting automation project, which could be addressed by our products. We do not have any touchscreen and SD card-based products; is it an option for you to use a regular PC (with a touchscreen) with 26 motor controllers connected to it? That would probably be cheapest, easiest, and most flexible. Also, are you looking for someone to deliver a complete solution, or are you looking for advice as you design the system?

- Ryan

Im looking at both. If I could get a quote front a contractor or if your up to the task thats all I would need to bring to my boss. Our machines are connected to a network and I’ve seen web servers that can connect devices for automation. For instance the device would be a server you go to it through your phone for instance while your by the machine and can’t adjust stuff that way. But I assume that would be slow.

Heres a link to some products that I think could fill the gap between your product. So I think I would need 26 actuators per machine, we have 9 machines, each actuator would need a motor controller, a power source and something along the lines of the link I just posted to control them. This company has little touch screens that can be programmed (not sure just how that works yet but I’ve been doing a lot of reading) and also be have SD cards that can boot the board. So if the main board goes bad pop out the sd card put in a new boards (couple of screws and a wiring harnesses) pop the old sd card in the new one and your booting up.

Do you think you could look at that link and let me know if what I’m saying is possible.

I am very interested if I can find the right person for an end product solution.

I think I addressed your questions when you called on the phone. Basically, if your microcontroller board can communicate with TTL (5V) serial, you can connect it to and control a chain of jrks. The jrk user’s guide has a section explaining the serial interface.

Please let me know if you have additional questions that were not answered.

- Ryan