Swedish microfactory for filter bags

Woven or nonwoven filter bags can be anywhere up to twelve metres in length and frequently have to be replaced.

ACG Kinna Automatic and ACG Nyström – members of TMAS, the Swedish textile machinery association – have delivered the first microfactory for the production of fully finished filter bags to a major international filtration industry customer, in cooperation with JUKI Central Europe.

As a fully automated system, it promises to revolutionise the production of woven or nonwoven needlefelt filter bags which until now have rather surprisingly been assembled and finished in laborious and time-consuming cut and sew operations by third party suppliers.

The microfactory’s configuration is based on two separate interconnecting modules – the Smart Filter Line (SFL) and the Filtermaster 2.0.

The SFL handles the fabric feeding from rolls and its folding prior to seam construction, which can either be by automatic sewing, welding or with sewing and taping, depending on specifications. Very rapid changeover of the modular seaming methods can be achieved during product changes. The specific size of the now fully-tubular fabric is then precisely cut to size for each individual unit and further folded ready to be fed into the Filtermaster 2.0.

The Filtermaster 2.0 then automatically attaches the reinforcement, bottom and snap rings onto the filter tube with a second Juki sewing head on a robotic arm, to form the fully finished filter bag ready for packaging.

“The automation of these essential steps is the real innovation we’ve achieved with this microfactory, eliminating the need for the many hours of labour-intensive manual work that has previously been necessary,” says ACG Kinna Automatic CEO Christian Moore. “The output is 120 finished filter bags per hour and the entire configuration is guided by precise automatic steering and alignment, with quality control handled by the latest high-definition vision cameras.

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