Formal release of the new X-ray guided cutting machine
Valka has formally released new X-ray guided water jet cutting machine that has been in development for some time. The machine gives fish processors opportunity to substantially improve throughput and yield using fewer workers when trimming and portioning fish fillets.
The machine uses combination of an X-ray and 3D image processing system together with robot controlled water jets to locate and cut out pin bones and portions with exceptionally high accuracy. The first machine has already been built and installed at HB Grandi in Reykjavik, Iceland.
More than doubled capacity
The machine has now been running for few weeks and is being used to cut out pin bones in Redfish fillets. The fillets are rather small, from 80-250 grams and 150-300 cm in length. When running the belt at 415 mm per second the machine can thus process from 500 kg/hour to over 1.200 kg/hour depending on the size of the fillets. At HB Grandi 3-4 workers are ordinarily working at the line and compared to manual cutting the capacity is at least double. The machine installed at HB Grandi is a single lane but it would also be possible to install it with double lane and increase the capacity accordingly.
Higher value products â€“ Short ROI period
By applying the new X-ray guided cutting machine HB Grandi is now able to produce much more valuable boneless products previously not feasible to process manually due to unacceptable yield and high labor costs. Therefore the estimated return of investment period for the HB Grandi machine is short.
The X-ray machine is exceptionally sensitive, capable of detecting fish bone down to 0.2 mm in size. The machine cutting proximity and throughput can be tuned to match the objective of yield and boneless fillets. The vision system can furthermore measure the density of the fillet and cut portions to the desired weight, for instance 150 gram loins.
This first version of the cutting machine suits best for fillets with relatively straight bone structure where direct cutting can be applied with satisfactory results. Valka however is already working on the next version with the potential of cutting with a degree parallel to the bones.
WorldFishingToday - 06-11-2012