The Pop Tart® Varietizer in Pop Tarts World™, January 2011
Croydon, Pa – Macron Dynamics Inc., a manufacturer of linear actuators, linear motion components, and custom mechanical motion systems, showed up prominently in New York City this past winter when their MacSTANDARD MSA-M6S linear actuators were used to power the robotic Pop-Tart® Varietizer in New York City’s Pop Tarts World™.
From August 2010 through December 2010, Pop-Tarts® were featured in their own temporary store in Times Square. Named Pop Tarts World™, the store featured four main attractions: The Pop Tart® Varietizer, a counter service restaurant called the Pop-Tarts World Cafe, a make-your-own T-shirt station, and an interactive media area.
A distributor of Macron’s supplied MacSTANDARD MSA-M6S actuators, which were noticeably placed on the front of the Pop-Tart® Varietizer, a large vending machine that required a robotic shuttle to provide X/Z motion to allow customer to create their own customized box of Pop-Tarts® from 23 different varieties.
Steve Evers, Director of Business Development, explains why motion within the Varietizer was unique: “The machine was very visual and involved internal movement by the pick and place mechanism while picking the selected Pop-Tarts® flavor. The apparatuses used for motion had to be precise, solid in appearance, and provide both horizontal and vertical motion.”
The solution was needed quickly, so MacSTANDARD linear actuators, which are readily available “off the shelf,” were the best fit while providing a clean look for the Varietizer. Two Macron 6’s provided the Z axis motion, and a third provided the X axis motion. A Macron gantry connection kit provided coupling to the Z axis assembly.
A close shot of the MSA-M6S's used to automate the Pop Tart® Varietizer
“The customer can watch the actuators move to select the Pop-Tart® chosen for the customized box. It’s a basic X and Z gantry automation system” says Evers. “Macron linear actuators have been used in the past for other vending and food service applications, but never for something as unique as the Pop Tart® Varietizer.”
Macron’s MacSTANDARD MSA-M6S linear actuators are available in any length up to 2.5 meters. Add-ons such as sensors, extra carts, and stainless steel components are available for further customization.
“It was exciting for Macron to be part of Pop Tarts World™. Creative robotics applications, like the Pop Tart® Varietizer, make working in the linear motion industry fun,” says Evers. Evers notes that Macron can evaluate and match its diverse product mix to meet almost any product manufacturing specifications, like they did for the Varietizer.