Georgia Pacific-Corrigan introduces Polypatch robots

Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

CORRIGAN, TX (KTRE) - Robotic technology is being used right here in the Pineywoods.

Three Polypatch robots are being used at the Georgia-Pacific Corrigan facility to make plywood manufacturing more efficient.

"It doubles the amount of product that we can produce at the same amount of time, said Plywood Plant Manager Chris Bluethman. "It approves the efficiency and effectiveness of upgrading our panels."

The facility has three of the Polypatch robots that do the job of six to eight people.

"It took eight people to run one lane for 24 hours, but now I run six lanes 24 hours with five people," said Master Robotic Technician J.T. Lee.

According to Lee, the robots detect and repair imperfections in wood veneer during production.

"We take a picture of a sheet of plywood; then we run it under cameras and scanners," Lee said. "Then, my robot takes that information and goes over patches any kind of defect."

Employees said the robots are not taking away jobs from humans.

"We've created higher paying technology jobs versus manual jobs," Bluethman said. "So we've actually created an ability for people to make more money at what they do."
Even though the robots make the plywood process a lot easier, they also help keep employees safe.

"Robots don't get hurt," said Bluethman. "We use to have people manually route and patch the panels, and now we don't have to worry about that."

Bluethman said they unload about 80 to 100 log trucks a day.

According to Georgia Pacific-Corrigan, this is just their latest move in keeping up with technological advances.

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