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04/26/2023|AMBEG Dr. J. Dichter GmbH

Flexible Robot Automation for small Batch Sizes

Founded in 1926 in Berlin by Jakob Dichter, AMBEG Dr. J. Dichter GmbH continues to be a leading manufacturer of machines for the automated production of primary packaging materials made of tubular glass. Packaging manufacturers for the pharmaceutical industry put their trust in the expertise of the steadily growing company. 

The storage trays of the Robo2Go Milling can be adjusted in a few simple steps for maximum flexibility when changing workpiece sizes. 

AMBEG has almost doubled the number of its skilled workers to 150 over the last few years and continues to invest in modern manufacturing technology, including DMG MORI machining and turning centers. Today, particular attention is paid to automated manufacturing. After AMBEG installed a DMU 50 with Robo2Go Milling, a DMU 65 monoBLOCK with flexible robot automation was also purchased. A CTX beta 800 TC with Robo2Go Turning has also already been ordered.

Machines for glass packaging in the pharmaceutical industry

“Glass syringes and vials continue to be important packaging material in the pharmaceutical industry,” explains Andreas Dichter, managing director of AMBEG. He heads up the company in the third generation. “For example, annual flu vaccinations are administered using single-use glass syringes.” The production of glass packaging takes place using the same principles as it did almost 70 years ago. The AMBEG glass processing machines are equipped with a carousel with up to 20 stations. Glass tubes are used as the raw material, which are shortened to the corresponding lengths and molded. The diameter of the tubes ranges from ø 6 to ø 55 mm. The glass is heated to around 800 °C by several gas burner to prepare it for processing. The finished molded glass products are subjected to camera-based visual inspections and measurements before being heated to 600 °C in a furnace and then slowly cooled down. “This stress relief procedure makes the glass packaging very stable,” says Andreas Dichter, explaining this process step.

Economical and reliable production with DMG MORI

AMBEG has already sold over 4,000 glass processing machines since the start of the company. A minimum of ten months is needed for their development and production. According to Andreas Dichter, it is currently closer to 15 due to the high demand: “This is why we have dramatically increased our production capacity over the past few years and, where possible, taken on a lot of new employees.” AMBEG has been relying on CNC machines from DMG MORI for their manufacturing technology for decades. “We can always find the right solutions that work economically and reliably in our broad product range.” The tool machine manufacturer’s automation solutions are a particularly important building block to ensure capacity continues to increase, even in today’s difficult personnel situation.

AMBEG already has experience in automated manufacturing in the area of turning. Here is a CTX alpha 500 with bar loader in use. Finished parts are automatically output. “Automation of milling processes was a new step for us,” says Andreas Dichter, looking back. The batch sizes are not very large. “That means we need very flexible automation solutions here.” AMBEG finally found what they were looking for in the Robo2Go product family. A DMU 50 with Robo2Go Milling was installed at the start of 2021.

Teaching without any robot programming knowledge required 

The Robo2Go has already been compatible with turning machines and turn-mill centers for several years. As Robo2Go Milling, it has also been used to automate machining centers such as the DMU 50 since 2020. “The fact that DMG MORI provides the tool machines as well as the automation from a single source, simplifies the installation enormously,” is the opinion of Andreas Dichter. The easy operation of the flexible Robo2Go products is its key feature. The team at AMBEG has already experienced this: “Teaching the Robo2Go does not require any special robot programming knowledge.” The CNC machine is operated via the CELOS control panel.

Autonomous and multi-machine operation 

For maximum flexibility, the Robo2Go Milling magazine can be fitted with different storage trays, which are adapted to the quantity and size of the workpieces. This is how AMBEG manufactures chucks, for example, of which 16 pieces are required per glass processing machine. Based on their positive experience with the automated DMU 50, AMBEG also installed a DMU 65 monoBLOCK with Robo2Go Milling shortly afterwards to increase the capacity in the area of milling. Andreas Dichter comments: “This allows our employees to easily operate several machines at the same time and leave them to run fully automatically for long periods of time.”

Andreas Dichter, Managing Director, AMBEG Dr. J. Dichter GmbH

Growth with more production space and further automation

AMBEG shifted the acceptance of the glass processing machines to a location in Köpenick to gain more space for production. Andreas Dichter would like to continue the good experience with automated manufacturing with a CTX beta 800 TC. The turn-mill center will also be installed with a Robo2Go in the next few months. “Chucks, which we previously used to machine on five sides in one setup, can now be completely manufactured on six sides, which further reduces our throughput times and increases our machine capacity.”

We can always find the right solutions that work economically and reliably in DMG MORI’s broad product range. The fact that DMG MORI provides the machine as well as the automation from a single source simplifies the installation enormously.

Andreas Dichter, Managing Director, AMBEG Dr. J. Dichter GmbH

AMBEG Dr. J. Dichter GmbH
Ella-Barowsky-Straße 65 – 68
10829 Berlin

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