10223 Food Process Machine

Project Type: Food Processing Fall 2010

Summary & Goals

Customer worked with a custom machine fabricator to develop a proprietary method for extruding, forming, and cutting a dough product. This was an upgrade to a previously designed machine from 2004. Logicon was approached to use the original machine’s program as a base design for developing a new program that matched the capabilities of the new machine. This included upgrading to the latest technology standards in use by the customer.


System configuration consisted of distributed I/O on ControlNet, PowerFlex VFDs on DeviceNet, Kinetix 6000 servo drives on Sercos, and command messaging to the Ultrasonic generators over RS232 using ASCII codes.

Due to the confidential nature of the machine, the specific process cannot be discussed. The machine extrudes the product continuously into the machine. Based on a recipe selection, individual ultrasonic knives are activated to form a cut pattern on the dough. They are presented into the product and retracted from the product in time with the process via a virtual axis and Position CAM instructions in the ControlLogix. The recipe also controls the amplitude and on/off timing of the ultrasonic to form a balance of product quality and ultrasonic blade longevity.

Interlocks to the process include the firing of a card feeder machine and the application of topping via a vibratory feeder. Logicon also provided complete process line integration for machine interlocks. Machines in the process line include the card feeder, process machine, checkweigher, wrapper, conveyors, metal detector, case sealer, and label applicator.


Logicon provided the upgraded control system design, programming, and panel construction as well as all onsite installation and start-up support. In addition to the machine development, Logicon was able to provide additional design and programming services for other custom designed equipment such as the product feed pump system, a card feed system, and the downstream conveying system. The completed machine design was a success and has a higher OEE than its predecessor due to the functionality and troubleshooting upgrades added by Logicon.

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