Graymont / Exshaw – Robotic Process Conveyances and Bagging

Scope of work and summary:

At the gateway to the Rocky Mountains, is the Graymont plant in Exshaw, Alberta. This facility produces a wide range of lime and limestone products. The company sought to move away from a largely manual process where employees had to physically place bags under the fill nozzle – and instead introduce a fully automated system.

CEL was engaged to design-build engineering/electrical and automation systems required for the integration of their new bagging lines. The customer-supplied system had air sweeps on the hoppers and screw conveyors with zero speed switches to feed a surge hopper on the bagging line equipment. A robotic arm would grab the bags, place them on the nozzle and fill them by weight. Full bags would proceed down a conveyor belt, where another robotic arm would stack the pallet. Then the pallet would move down the line to a shrink wrapper to get sealed up.

CEL was involved in the installation of new VFD’s, starters and MCC’s, cabling infrastructure, field tie-in of conveyor motors and installation and tie-in of new field instruments (slide gates, level switches, speed switches). We were responsible for Master HMI changes and integration of vendor supplied PLC’s/HMI’s.

CEL and Comco (CEL’s design/engineering and manufacturing division) carried out the installation and commissioning of an HMI control station. Comco also provided integration between the existing level switches controlling the feed hoppers and the client supplied system. The new system has been successfully operating for several years, and has improved the safety and efficiency of Graymont’s packaging and shipping operations.