The 3 best Palletizing robot arms in 2024

February 20, 2024
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What is a Palletizing robot arm and how does it work?

A Palletizing robot arm is a robotic manipulator designed specifically for stacking cases, crates, or other products onto pallets for storage or shipping. 

These robot arms use end-effectors, or robotic ‘hands,’ to grab and move products with precision and efficiency.

Here’s how it works: 

  • Palletizing robots use sensors and algorithms to determine the best stacking pattern for products on pallets.
  • The robot arm accurately grabs, lifts, and positions each item on the pallet following the predetermined pattern.
  • It releases the product, and then repeats the process, layer by layer, until the pallet is fully assembled.

How much does a Palletizing robot arm cost?

A Palletizing robot arm typically costs between $2,000 to $500,000, depending on the model, features, and customizations you’re after.

But that’s not the total cost of an end-to-end Palletizing solution. 

Here’s what you need to keep in mind: 

How much will it cost to integrate? 

Integrating the arm with your existing systems and programming it to handle your specific palletizing tasks can cost $10,000-$50,000 or more, depending on complexity.

Think about EOAT (End-of-arm tooling)

The EOAT, like vacuum grippers or mechanical grippers, attaches to the end of the robot arm and handles manipulating products. An EOAT can set you back  between $5,000-$50,000.

Do you need extra safety equipment? 

Depending on your Palletizing application, you may need safety equipment like floor mats, light curtains, and fencing to protect workers, which typically costs between $5,000 to $30,000.

How much will the installation and warranty cost? 

Installation of a Palletizing robot arm usually costs $5,000 to $20,000. Most robot arms also come with at least a 1-year warranty, although multi-year warranties are available for an additional fee.

The good news? Palletizing robots typically have an ROI of 1-3 years. 

The benefits of using a Palletizing robot arm for pallet stacking

There’s quite a lot to be said for Palletizing robots, and practically all of it is good to great. 

Here are the main benefits of bringing this type of automation to your shop floor: 

  • Productivity goes through the roof: Palletizing robots work non-stop, stacking up to 60 pallets per hour, surpassing human capabilities by a long shot, and allowing for more orders to be fulfilled swiftly.
  • Costs go way down: Despite the initial investment, Palletizing robots cut long-term expenses by lowering labor costs, minimizing product damage, and reducing insurance premiums, all while requiring minimal maintenance.
  • Accuracy goes up, up, and up: These robots virtually guarantee precise, consistent stacking with fewer errors, handling complex patterns and loads efficiently, leading to neatly packed pallets and heightened customer satisfaction.
  • Extremely flexible: Palletizing robots are adaptable, capable of dealing with various products, pallet sizes, and stacking patterns, and can be easily reprogrammed to meet changing business needs.

What to keep in mind before buying a Palletizing robot arm

Before investing in a Palletizing robot arm, you need to think carefully about your needs and constraints. 

Take some time  to carefully consider these factors: 

  • Cost considerations: Prices for Palletizing robots range from $2,000 to over $500,000, influenced by their capabilities and complexity. As we mentioned above, you also need to factor in extra costs for integration, setup, and long-term maintenance.
  • Workspace fit: Make extra sure that the robot fits your space, considering its movement range and environmental conditions like temperature and humidity. Some situations need custom solutions – which are costly. 
  • Speed and capacity: For high-volume operations, go for robots capable of managing multiple pallets quickly. Balance the need for speed with the precision required for handling your products.

Support and expertise: Make sure to choose a supplier with a solid track record and the ability to offer comprehensive support, from installation to training and maintenance, especially if you don’t have in-house robotics expertise.

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The top three Palletizing robot arms

Time to bring out the big guns. We’ve gone ahead and chosen the absolute best Palletizing robot arms on the market right now. Any of these should bring happiness, joy, and – most importantly – productivity to even the grimmest shop floor. 

They are: 

RO1 by Standard Bots

RO1 is a cutting-edge robotic arm by American company Standard Bots. It has many ultramodern features: 

  • No complex configurations: Eliminates the need for intricate ROS setups or costly coding tools with its straightforward, no-code interface that allows for easy adjustments and deployment.
  • Powerful performance: Outperforms competitors with a payload capacity of 18 kg, joint speed of 435°/s, and precision of +/-0.025 mm, setting a new standard in its category.
  • Versatility: Its ability to handle heavy loads, operate with minimal errors, and integrate smoothly with various equipment showcases its adaptability and flexibility.
  • Cost-effective: Offers unbeatable value at half the cost of similar models in its class, making it a financially savvy choice.
  • Advanced features: Comes with an onboard camera system and AI with self-learning capabilities, on par with technologies like GPT-4.
  • Safe operation: Incorporates built-in collision detection and force limitation for safe collaboration with human workers, eliminating the need for additional safety measures.

FANUC M-410iC/185

If you’ve ever been even moderately interested in robotics, you know about FANUC, the Japanese robotics titan.  

  • Known for its reliability and precision, the M-410iC/185 stands out as a formidable force in the Palletizing world.
  • Exceptional capacity: With a colossal payload of 185 kg and a reach of up to 3 meters, it can manage a wide array of case sizes with ease.
  • User-friendly programming: Features FANUC's integrated vision systems and HandlingTool software, streamlining the programming process for users.
  • Premium pricing: Positioned as a premium option in the market, it comes with a price tag exceeding $100,000 for most Palletizing applications.

ABB IRB 6640

ABB is definitely no slouch when it comes to robot arms, and their ABB IRB 6640 has moves for days. 

  • Speed demon: Dominates with a high-speed capability of over 180 picks per minute, making it a powerhouse in the palletizing sector.
  • Heavy-lifter: Offers an impressive payload capacity of up to 300 kg (depending on the model) and a reach of 2.55 meters, perfect for stacking hefty boxes in ambitious configurations.
  • Smooth operator: Employs ABB's premier motion control technology for exceptionally smooth and precise operations.
  • Ready for action: Arrives pre-engineered for palletizing tasks but boasts the versatility for customization to suit a variety of applications.
  • Investment required: The investment scale varies with capabilities, stretching from $35,000 to $70,000, reflecting its high-end performance and capacity.
  • 140-170 kg models range between $35,000 and $50,000.
  • 200-235 kg models fall within $45,000 to $60,000.
  • The top-tier 300 kg model is priced between $55,000 and $70,000.


Will a Palletizing robot arm replace human workers?

Robot arms are designed to handle repetitive, physically demanding tasks like pallet stacking. They excel at precision and high speeds, freeing up human workers for more engaging jobs. Some roles may be replaced, but many new ones will also be created to program, maintain and oversee these automated systems. 

How much space does a Palletizing robot arm require?

Palletizing robot arms vary in size depending on their payload and reach. In general, you will need a space at least 6 to 8 feet in diameter for the arm to operate, plus additional space for pallets, products, and safety barriers. The control panel is often placed several feet away. 

For larger systems with conveyors or multiple arms, significantly more floor space will be required. Be sure to consider your factory layout and available space before selecting a robot arm.

How difficult are Palletizing robot arms to program?

Modern robot arms are designed to be user-friendly, with intuitive programming interfaces that don't require advanced coding skills. Many are equipped with simulation software that allows you to program the arm's movements visually. You simply grab and move the arm to demonstrate the desired motion path and stacking pattern. 

The software automatically generates the code to execute your programmed moves. Some knowledge of robotics and programming is still helpful for more complex operations, but Palletizing applications can typically be set up quite easily using the arm's built-in tools.

How much does a Palletizing robot arm cost?

Palletizing robot arms vary in price from $2,000 up to $500,000 or more for large, high-speed systems. The total cost will depend on factors like:

  • Payload - Arms with higher payloads to handle heavier products cost more.
  • Reach - Longer reaches require more powerful arms and additional components, increasing the price.
  • Speed - Faster arms with quicker Palletizing times tend to cost more.
  • Programming - More advanced programming features and software add to the overall cost.
  • Integration - Additional equipment like conveyors, grippers, and guarding will increase the total price.
  • Options - Extra features such as vision systems, force control, and wear components can raise costs.


So, we’ve reached the end of the road for now. 

Remember: when you're ready to automate your pallet stacking and de-stacking operations, choose one of these advanced robotic solutions, and there’s no way you can really go wrong! 

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