A Chinese glassmaker which supplies to brands including Tsingtao beer has invested in swabbing robots from Heye International.

A product expansion at Chinese container glass group, Shandong Jingyao Glass, includes three swabbing robots and Press Duration Control PDC equipment sourced from Germany’s Heye International.

The swabbing robots are the first to be installed by Heye in the country.

Shandong Jingyao Glass Group has invested strongly in the high speed production of lightweight bottles in recent years.

As well as supplying bottles for China’s iconic Tsingtao beer, the company has emerged as an important source for such global brands as AB InBev, Carlsberg, Heineken and Snow Beer.

The glassworks in Linyi City, Shandong Province features four melting furnaces and 16 high speed production lines, with a combined nominal capacity of 1000 tons/day.

Some of the world’s most advanced Narrow Neck Press and Blow process glass container production technology is operated at the site, including a series of Heye International IS machines and associated equipment.

The glass packager worked with Heye International to install China’s first automatic swabbing robots and to guarantee that machine operators are properly trained to operate the equipment effectively.

The robots deliver zero rejects and avoid section stops during swabbing.

Compared to conventional swabbing methods, lubricant savings of up to 75% are possible.

According to Heye’s Andy Lee, improved operator safety is assured, with stable and repeatable volume, thickness and location of swabbing provided, making more time available for operators to focus on production optimisation.

Separately, the glassmaker has invested in a PlantPilot information technology solution from Heye International and initiated a technical assistance agreement with the production technology specialist to improve and optimise NNPB technology at the site.