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Mechanical Palletizers offer a smaller footprint and use fewer movements, decreasing the probability of dropped product. Mechanical palletizers typically cost less than robotic palletizers and deliver different levels of flexibility, particularly in single product applications. They are simple to install, repurpose and maintain, and can perform at very high speeds for applications with rigid, cube-based shapes.
Robotic Palletizing Systems are increasing in popularity due to their decreasing cost, combined with improved reliability, flexibility and increasingly smaller equipment footprint. Robotics are better equipped to handle multiple tasks, thanks to improvements in grippers and auxiliary equipment.
A robotic palletizing system can perform one task, such as loading the pallet; or many simultaneously, like packaging products, loading boxes onto a pallet, and wrapping the pallet with shrink wrap. It is a gentler, more consistent treatment than manual palletizing. However, if a robotic palletizer is loading 4 different pallets and the robot goes down, all 4 SKUs will be affected at once, whereas since each mechanical palletizer handles a single product, not all SKUs may be affected.