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New KUKA robotic technology guarantees the highest hygiene standards

The food, pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries impose special requirements on robotics. The new KUKA “Hygienic Oil” (HO) portfolio and “Hygienic Machine” (HM) variants are designed to avoid potential contamination and comply with the highest hygiene requirements.

January 13, 2022


New paths for automation in food production – and beyond

For handling, packaging, palletizing or stacking, the new KUKA Hygienic Oil (HO) portfolio and Hygienic Machine (HM) variants excel in all applications that prioritize hygiene. The robot arms use food-compatible lubricants in all axes and feature a smooth surface for easy cleaning. This design ensures a high hygienic standard and makes these robots attractive for use in other industries as well:
  • Food

    Guaranteed food compatibility, even under difficult production conditions

    Learn more.
  •  Pharmaceuticals

    Suitable for demanding applications in direct contact with medicines
    Learn more.
  • Cosmetics

    Hygienic robots also offer safety and efficiency in all cosmetics applications
    Learn more.

FDA-compliant NSF H1 lubricants in all axes

The wide range of Hygienic Oil (HO) robots suits many applications in the secondary sector.

KUKA’s new HO portfolio has been available since the beginning of 2021. “The HO industrial robots meet the hygiene requirements of Machinery Directive 2006/42/EC and DIN ISO 14159,” explained KUKA Portfolio Manager Dieter Rothenfußer. “They are equipped with certified NSF H1 lubricants in all axes, including the energy supply systems. Maintenance intervals are identical to those of our standard robots.”

The modern lighter gray design of this robotics portfolio makes it particularly easy to detect contamination on the machine. With these measures, KUKA meets the increased safety standards in the secondary sector – and is the only worldwide supplier with this broad portfolio. Hygienic Oil (HO) robots also offer application potential beyond food-industry processing and packaging, for processing of solid or dry products such as chocolate or baked goods.

Hygiene meets robotics: The HO portfolio uses H1 lubricants in all axes

Discover our diverse portfolio of Hygienic Oil (HO) robots

KUKA hygienic robotic technology with H1 lubricants covers payloads from 6 to 240 kg and reaches from 900 to 3,200 mm, – for use along the entire process chain. This encompasses all robot families: from the KR AGILUS to the KR QUANTEC PA – with even faster cycle times. The main axes are carry protection rating IP 65 against dust and water, the wrist axes to IP 67. 
Hygienic design of components, seals and materials minimizes contamination risks

Easy-to-clean hygienic design

HM machines effortlessly meet all hygiene standards of the primary sector

To meet the requirements of the primary sector, KUKA offers HM (“Hygienic Machine”) robotics that make cleanliness the top priority. The design and materials of these “Hygienic Design” machines are based on EHEDG design guidelines, and allow robots to be used in applications that involve direct contact with foodstuffs and pharmaceutical substances. “Corrosion-resistant housings without inaccessible corners, food-grade lubricants and the use of stainless steel components guarantee the highest level of hygiene,” said Dieter Rothenfußer. At the same time, these robots are particularly resistant to disinfectants and chemical cleaning agents, with a robust, waterproof design that is easy to clean with high pressure. The cleaning-sensitive electrical interface is located underneath the machine rather that in the primary contact area. 

Find the ideal HM robot for your application

With FDA-compliant components and H1 lubricants, HM robots impress with a payload of 3-10 kg and a reach of up to 1,200 mm. The 2021 introduction of the stainless-steel KR DELTA into the KUKA portfolio has supplemented performance for the primary sector.

We want to continue expanding the KR DELTA offering for rapid pick and place tasks, especially in the packaging sector. This also applies to corresponding variants of our KR SCARA robots.

Dieter Rothenfußer, Portfolio Manager

Are you interested in a hygienic robot?

We are happy to advise you!

White paper: Successfully automate hygienic production processes

The Hygienic Machines and Hygienic Oil robots with food-grade NSF H1 lubricants and optimized cleanability meet the high requirements of the primary and secondary sectors. Their hygienic design complies with EHEDG recommendations. They are therefore versatile, from primary processing to packaging.

Learn more about KUKA's Hygienic Design variants.

Download White Paper

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