Sachet pouch packaging machines are becoming increasingly popular today for their simplicity, ease-of-use, and the superior aesthetics of their finished product. Whether you are new to packaging automation or are considering adding premade pouch packaging to your product lineup, you are probably interested in how these machines operate. Today we are taking a step-by-step look at the processes.
- Bag Loading
Preformed pouches are loaded manually by an operator into the bag magazine in the front of the automatic pouch filling/sealing machine. The bags are conveyed to the machine by a bag feeding roller.
- Bag Gripping
When a bag is detected by a proximity sensor, a vacuum bag loader picks up the pouch and transfers it to a set of grippers, which will hold the bag as it travels around the rotary unit to different stations.
- Optional Printing/Embossing
If printing or embossing is desired, that equipment will be placed at this station. This machine can utilize both thermal and inkjet printers. The printer can place desired date/lot codes on the pouches. The embossing option places raised date/lot codes into the bag seal.
- Zipper or Bag Opening & Detection
The bag has a zipper reclosure, a vacuum suction pad opens the lower part of the preformed pouch and opening jaws catch the top side of the bag. The opening jaws separate outward to open the top of the bag and the premade pouch is inflated by an air blower. If the bag does not have a zipper, the vacuum suction pads still open the bottom part of the pouch but only the air blower is engaged.
Two sensors are present at the bottom of the bag to detect its presence. If a bag is not detected, the filling and sealing stations will not engage. If a bag is present but not placed correctly, it will not be filled and sealed and instead stay on the rotary apparatus until the next cycle.
- Bag Filling
Product is dropped down a bag funnel into the bag, usually by a multi-head scale. For powder products, an auger filler is used. In the case of liquid pouch filling machines, product is pumped into the bag by a liquid filler with a nozzle. The filling apparatus is responsible for the correct measurement and release of discrete quantities of product to be dropped into each premade pouch.
Options at the filling station include:
Gas flush. This process displaces oxygen within the bag by using a blast of gas, usually nitrogen. This is done immediately prior to filling the bag with product to ensure maximum displacement.
Dust collection. A dust hood is placed above the filling station that collects airborne particles.
- Product Settling or Other Options
Sometimes loose contents need to settle to the bottom of the bag before sealing. This station shakes the premade pouch to achieve that.
- Bag Sealing & Deflation
A hot seal bar closes on the upper part of the pouch. Remaining air is squeezed out of the bag by two deflator components before sealing occurs.
- Cooling & Discharge
A cooling bar passes over the seal to strengthen and flatten it. The finished bag is then discharged into a receptacle or onto a conveyor and can be transported to downline equipment like check weighers, x-ray machines, case packaging, or carton packing equipment. With the below statement, we can grasp how to turn an empty premade pouch into a shelf-ready finished product on the sachet filling machine.