CHICAGO (July 6, 11:25 a.m. EDT) — Sterling Inc.´s Sterltech Division and an ABB Group unit have formed a technology and marketing alliance linking use of their technologies for the plastics industry.
Sterltech of Windsor, Conn., and ABB Flexible Automation Inc. of New Berlin, Wis., signed the alliance in early May and disclosed the agreement June 19 at NPE in Chicago.
Sterltech offers traverse pick-and-place robots and sprue pickers, and ABB has articulated arm robots, gantry robots and other automation equipment.
The link means the firms can offer turnkey parts removal and secondary-process automation equipment for injection molders, thermoformers and extruders.
"Sterltech has worked with ABB on automation projects in the automotive and consumer goods markets, and we can see going beyond into downstream laser degating, box filling and indexing," said Stephen Petrakis, Sterling vice president of sales and marketing.
"We will put together a product-development team and a marketing team," said Douglas Niebruegge, director of marketing for the ABB unit´s robotic products division. ABB manufactures the robots in Västers, Sweden, and has more than 80,000 robots installed worldwide.
Sterltech employs 30 and integrates specialized robotic and control systems at its facility in Windsor. Sterltech accounts for about 10 percent of Sterling Inc.´s annual $30 million sales.
For ABB, the alliance emulates an 8-year-old die-casting alliance with Rimrock Corp. of Columbus, Ohio.