Learn how Breathe Medical helps frontline workers across the country with the help of automation.
A Mission to Keep Canadians Safe
After becoming incorporated on March 9, 2020, Breathe Medical Manufacturing Ltd. began to pursue its goal of producing high quality surgical face masks and heavy-duty N95 particulate respirators. This company operates in a 60,000 sq ft facility in Kelowna, and they strive to fill a gap in the marketplace, since most of the world’s supply of surgical masks are manufactured in China. After all, they say that Canadian retailers, distributors, corporations, and citizens should have a secure and stable supply chain that Canadians can rely on. Whether it’s for the medical industry or for food processing plants, Breathe Medical is there to help people stay safe.
An Ambitious Goal
As you may expect, the COVID-19 pandemic caused demand to grow at an intense rate for Breathe Medical. Even before they started production, they knew that they needed to expand their operations. In order to protect the numerous amounts of frontline workers that are exposing themselves to the virus, they wanted to reach a production capacity of a whopping 40,000,000 surgical masks per month. Clearly, this feat wouldn’t be possible through human labor alone, especially if they wanted to reach this goal before June, which was only a few months away at the time of planning. As a result, they turned to automation for help.
Automation: The Path to Success
For a project as large as this to be achieved in such a short timeframe, collaboration between Apex Motion Control and various automation experts was the key to success. By joining forces with Dorner Conveyors, who provided conveyor lengths and raw materials, and Shelley Automation, who provided automation components, this ambitious goal could become a reality.
Together, they worked hard to implement a conveyor system to support the 12 mask assembly machines that are a part of Breathe Medical’s production process. By using Dorner’s FlexMove Conveyors and custom puck handling, workpiece carriers, masks are now able to be transported from the machines through production for optimal efficiency. After the masks are finished the production process, Apex Motion Control’s Zero Footprint Palletizer then moves these packaged masks onto a pallet to be ready for shipping. With these systems in place, mask production is more efficient than ever, and Breathe Medical can support frontline workers across the country with ease.
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