Markforged – End of Arm Vacuum Tooling Use Case (EOAT)

Markforged highlights a new use case this month with End-of-arm Vacuum Tooling (EOAT), which is commonly found in packaging and cardboard box assembling equipment. This end-of-arm vacuum manipulator, printed by Markforged, supports a higher robotic arm speed through an increase in strength and decrease in density, exceeding capabilities of traditional materials like aluminium.

  • End-of-arm vacuum tooling (EOAT) is common in packaging and cardboard box assembling equipment.
  • Vacuum manipulators are an effective solution to softly and securely grip thin, flat products.
  • A 3D printed solution replaces external vacuum tubing that can snag, or internal channels that are diffcult to machine.
  • Manipulators printed with Onyx and Carbon Fiber are strong and light-weight with complex, integral vacuum channels.

3D Printed End-of-arm Vacuum Tooling (EOAT) Part Features

In the packaging industry, vacuum manipulators mounted at the end of industrial robot arms, are widely used to position and handle thin products such as unassembled cardboard boxes. The manipulator generally distributes a main vacuum line into a series of suction cups, positioned for stable gripping across the target object. Internal vacuum routing is key to avoiding snags and jams in high speed production.

Why Use Markforged 3D Printers for Arm Vacuum Tooling (EOAT) Tooling Parts?

Vacuum EOAT requires high stiffness to promote a good seal, and low weight to enable high speed robot arm movement. Combining Markforged’s Onyx and continuous Carbon Fibre filament, enables vacuum EOAT to be created with both these properties. These tooling parts often exceed the capabilities of traditional materials like aluminium. Iterating through designs for end-use EOAT is also much faster with a 3D printed solution.

Industry Applications for Arm Vacuum Tooling (EOAT)

Packaging equipment across the industry is often engineered as custom or semi-custom solutions produced in low volume. High strength 3D printing from Markforged, offers material and process performance in excess of existing aluminum solutions and, attractive economies at the low volume scales commonly seen in a packaging equipment manufacturer.

See the performance data in this PDF (1.6 Mb download size).


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