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Glass International May 2019

Glass International Feature Article, May 2019




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The adoption of in-line sensors for real-time impact measurement during processing has been swift.

“You cannot improve what you cannot measure,” comments Eduardo Albaizar, Process Scientist at Vidrala.

Impact is a damaging mechanical load when processing glass containers and while it isn’t a guarantee that breakage will occur simply because a bottle receives a given impact; the probability of breakage absolutely does increase.

“Until the advent of in-line sensor technology, impact measurement was characterised by the speed of the filling line. It was not possible to understand the root cause of shock in production, nor was it possible to visualise impact on the line in real-time. This is key to enabling fillers to improve their line efficiency and reduce damage to their glass containers,” explains Pablo Asiron, Executive VP of Global Sales for Masitek, a supplier of smart in-line sensor technology which is marketed under the Masitek brand.

When Pablo started with Masitek three years ago, in-line impact measurement was a relatively new concept that was just beginning to take hold. The technology, sensors embedded in exact replicas of the container being processed, are deployed on the production line to accurately measure a container’s experience during processing. It is now used extensively by fillers and glassmakers alike. Pablo wants the world to know that the technology exists and is widely in use. 

“Smart in-line sensors are deployed at all four of the top breweries globally and are transforming liquid packaging production,” he says.

Impact measurement method
Travelling more than 20 weeks a year to various packaging operations looking to deploy the Masitek technology, it was during a trade exhibition that Pablo connected with Vidrala. Shortly thereafter, Vidrala purchased in-line sensors from Masitek and started an extensive internal deep analysis of the sensors and measurements before starting to use them widely.

Eduardo explains the difficulties of impact measurement faced by Vidrala prior to deploying the Masitek suite of in-line sensors.

“Traditionally, the characterisation of the hardness of a bottling line had been carried out qualitatively. We had few quantitative arguments to present to our customers when highlighting those points


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