Automatic folding machine - ON-187

Preferred Disciplines: Automation, Robotics, Process optimization, Mechanical/Systems (Masters, PhD or Post-Doc)
Company: Anonymous
Project Length: 4-12 months (1-2 units)
Desired start date: As soon as possible
Location: Toronto, ON
No. of Positions: 1
Preferences: GTA/Kitchener/Waterloo/Guelph but being able to get the project done is more important

About the Company: 

We are more than a manufacturer of specialized textile products for the defense market; we are renowned for our quality control efforts, automated stitching and cutting capabilities, and our commitment to continuous improvement through leading-edge technology. This combination of excellence plus the dedication of our strong team are just a couple of reasons why we are the premier sewing supplier in North America.

The company was established in 1985 as an award-winning company specializing in custom-design, engineering and manufacture of mechanically-stitched textile-based products for the defense market.

Located in Toronto, Canada, we operate out of a modern manufacturing facility of 67,000 square feet and has a staff of 100 full-time employees including a core management group with technical, engineering, manufacturing and military-built solutions expertise. It is a clean manufacturing facility.

We are a major sub-contractor to some of the world's largest defense companies and have been recognized as one of the most responsive, innovative, high value suppliers of engineered and customized stitched products.

Project Description:

The company has a manual folding process that requires the use of tooling and operator’s dexterity as well as hands/arm forces and skills to complete the operation. The operator has to arrange wires, twist and fold spring steels into the required shape and then finally packaging the finished product with the assist of tooling to tie the package with straps. The company would like to explore the possibility of automating this process. The company does not have the expertise to develop such technology. The company would need the school to assist with funding application and developing such technology.

Research Objectives:

The company would like to explore the possibility of automating this process. The company does not have the expertise to develop such technology. The company would need the assistance with developing such technology.

Deliverables in collaboration:

  1. Determine all requirements for the process
  2. Produce a feasibility analysis
  3. Automatic folding equipment to produce 3000 products/week or more
  4. Reduce the current head count from 3 to 1
  5. Eliminate or reduce ergonomic strains on the operators
  6. ROI within 1-2 years
  7. Completion within 6 months


The researcher will work with the partner organization in developing the methodology

Expertise and Skills Needed:

Knowledge base

  • Automation
  • Robotic
  • Process optimization

For more info or to apply to this applied research position, please

  1. Check your eligibility and find more information about open projects
  2. Interested students need to get the approval from their supervisor and send their CV along with a link to their supervisor’s university webpage by applying through the webform.