Unmanned insulation processing line - Van Wijnen

prefab engineering Modular machines
Van Wijnen is a large construction group that produces affordable, sustainable prefabricated homes with their housing factory. In this factory, homes are made in many different designs and the processes are automated to the maximum. An automated insulation cutting line was needed to process the various insulation materials.


The project involved the construction of an unmanned insulation cutting line capable of processing all kinds of different types and thicknesses of insulation material. The production line had to connect to the plant’s digital environment, be equipped with the latest technology and meet the following requirements, among others:

  • Be able to process insulation panels unmanned
  • A capacity of 6 facade elements per hour
  • Read in data from geometries (BIM) from an MES system
  • Produce pieces of insulation with high accuracy
  • Be able to drill, glue, cut and label insulation automatically
  • Separate waste from the elements
  • Automatically change type and thickness of material
  • Reuse remaining pieces in the process
  • Minimize waste < 5%
  • Shred small waste



prefab Drilling table - snijlijn

Approach for a processing line

In cooperation with the customer, the production processing line layout was determined and various scenarios and solutions were analyzed and calculated. Smart use was made of modules such as gantry cranes, water jet, and drilling machine and everything was combined into an efficient whole through customization. Subsequently, the production line was fully realized by Twin-Tech as a turnkey project.

The panels are then passed to the drill table, where they are drilled with holes by a 5-axis drill head. Once the holes have been drilled and the labels applied, the insulation panels are fed through to the water jet cutter where the pieces are cut out. A second gantry crane at the end of the line picks up the cut pieces, pushes the waste out of the element, and places it on the conveyor to the insert position in the plant. The cut waste goes toward the shredder, where it is ground into shreds.

Detail engineering work
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The result is a fully automated insulation cutting line controlled from the digital environment that delivers the customized insulation pieces to the concrete elements. The line can perform the operations unmanned and consists of the following modules:

  • Input conveyors: For feeding different types and thicknesses of insulation
  • Destacker robot: Gantry robot that takes care of stacking and offering the correct insulation material.
  • Gluing table: Here the sheets are glued together to form an “infinitely” long input strip
  • Labeling machine: It applies labels with the correct information and data for the recognition and orientation of the insulation element
  • Drilling machine: here the holes are drilled by a 5-axis drilling machine
  • Water jet cutting machine: to cut the PIR sheets to size
  • Removal crane: This is a gantry robot with a gripper equipped with an extruder mechanism to automatically extrude unusable waste pieces.
  • Shredder: unusable waste pieces are shredded and blown into a container
Prefab production line Van Wijnen
cobotics Production cell

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