The X39 X-ray inspection system designed by Mettler-Toledo Safeline now enables manufacturers of frozen formed burger patties (beef, pork, chicken, fish and vegetarian) to detect and reject non-conforming products, including both those containing contaminants and those with other product irregularities or defects.

The X39 has a two-stage inspection process. Stage one is an integrated laser technology preliminary brand integrity check for flake defects, and length, width and height irregularities. (Flakes are small pieces of uncooked product that can land on a patty during the forming process, before the entire product is frozen. There is a risk that the underside of the flake will not be 100% cooked.) This inspection takes place regardless of product position. A single bank of air nozzles and a reject flap immediately removes individual substandard products from the conveyor.

In the second inspection stage, X39 X-ray detector consecutively inspects the remaining good products for foreign-body contaminants, such as calcified bone, mineral, stone, glass, metal and high-density plastic, and additional product defects, including holes, dents, edge deformities, mass and shape. Air nozzles reject substandard product into a secondary rework receptacle, further minimizing waste, ensuring brand integrity and upholding food safety requirements.

This two-fold product inspection system and highly-precise reject capability takes place across multiple production lanes, enabling manufacturers to rework products detected by each examination stage, significantly reducing waste and protecting bottom line savings. The X39 operates at 60 meters a minute. For example: it can conduct 10 integrity checks of 300 pieces a minute per lane based on 100 mm patties across 6 lanes, with an approximately 100 mm gap between each product. 

The advanced X39 software also monitors system performance to ensure that the technology is always working at precision levels. The software monitors all aspects of the system, providing assessments of the accuracy of the lasers, reject nozzles and confirmation sensors.