April 21, 2024

A conveyor system is an efficient and fast mechanical handling device that automatically transports loads and materials in a given area. The system reduces the risk of workplace accidents, and lowers labor costs. These systems are helpful in moving heavy or bulky items. The conveyor system can use wheels, a belt or chain to move objects.
What is the working of conveyor systems?

Conveyor systems are typically made up of a belt that is stretched across two or three pulleys. The belt is formed into a closed circle around the pulleys to allow it to rotate continuously. The drive pulley is the pulley that drives the belt or pulls it to move items.

Most conveyor parts use a motorized rotor that drives the belt and drive pulley. The friction between the two surfaces keeps the belt attached to the rotor. The belt can only move if the idler and drive pulley are both running in the same direction.

While most conveyors, such as those in grocery stores and moving walkways, are straight, they may need to be turned to get the goods to their proper destination. There are special cone-shaped wheels and rotors that allow the belt to turn without becoming tangled.

Conveyor systems have many advantages.
A conveyor system’s main function is to move items from one place to another. This design allows the movement of heavy objects or bulky items that humans cannot carry.

Conveyors save time by transporting goods from one place to another. They can be incline to span multiple floors and make it easier to move items from one floor to another. This is a difficult task to perform manually. The belts that are inclined can unload the material automatically, so there is no need to have someone on the other end to receive the pieces.

Examples and types of conveyor systems

Conveyor systems come in many different types. You may imagine a warehouse full of belts and rollers that move heavy boxes and equipment. This is only one type of conveyor system. Airports also use conveyor systems to transport luggage. Escalators and ski lifts are also examples. These devices still use a chain or belt to move heavy objects from one place to another.

Many types of conveyor systems are available, including:

Belt
Roller
Slat/apron
Ball Transfer
Overhead
Pneumatic
Bucket
Chute
Magnetic
Vertical
Wheel
Walking beam
Vibrating
Screw/auger
Chain
Each type of conveyer has a particular purpose. A slat-conveyor, which is made of slats, plates, or a combination, instead of a conveyor belt, can be used to move heavy materials. The materials that are transported by a slat conveyor system are usually too heavy or large to be moved with a traditional belt.

A chain-driven system is an escalator. The chain conveyor does not use a pulley to pull items, but instead uses a system of towing that moves the steps upwards or downwards.

Ski lifts is an example of an overhead conveyer. These units pull chairs up and down the mountainside using an inclined electric track. These systems are similar to an escalator in that they use a towing system with a chain.

The essential parts of a conveyor system

Three main components make up a conveyor unit: the pulley, the support for the belt and the drive. Each component is essential to the operation of the conveyor unit. All conveyor systems have these components, but the designs and materials used to construct them vary.

The belt support ensures that the belt moves as it should. The belt will sag if the support unit does not have enough firmness. This can cause the belt to not move as smoothly and quickly as it should when heavy objects are placed on top. A firm support unit will keep the belt running smoothly and efficiently.

The belt is controlled by the pulley system, which is external. Each unit contains at least two pulleys: one idle and one powered by power. Additional rotors may be used in more complex conveyor systems.

The drive unit is what allows the system to be moved. This unit has a counter-bearing that ensures the moving parts are efficient. The unit allows the belt to be moved in reverse, and it manages the repeated changes in direction in some systems. Some conveyor systems can be operated manually. The drive unit is still used, but it’s not motorized.

What is the best conveyor system?
A conveyor is a vital part of any operation that involves receiving, handling, storing, distributing, manufacturing or shipping products. The many conveyor types and configurations available can make it difficult for warehouse managers to select the best conveyor system.

There are also several factors you should consider when identifying and purchasing the right conveyor system for your warehouse or distribution facility. Consider both the product and the process requirements.

The ideal conveyor system should be:

Operationally Safe
Energy efficient
Reliable (parts & components designed to last)
Adaptable to changing requirements
Cost-effective in terms of TCO (total cost of ownership).
The wrong conveyor system can quickly reduce a warehouse’s operational efficiency. This will lead to increased costs and decreased customer satisfaction.

Let’s examine factors to consider before evaluating and choosing the right conveyor system for you.

Product Requirements
A conveyor system is primarily used to move products between different functional areas in a distribution center. The type of items to be transported will dictate the size, design and type of conveyor to be installed.

Answering the following questions can help you determine the design and configuration requirements for your conveyor system and calculate horsepower and belt tension for each conveyor.

What is the type of product being transported?
How much does a product weigh per foot?
What is the maximum product weight?
What are the average, minimum and maximum dimensions (i.e. length, width, and height) of the product?
What are the dimensions of each product?
What orientation is the product being transported in?
The fragility, weight and dimensions of the product will have a major impact on your decision. The dimensions of your items will determine the conveyor width, guiderail specifications, and roller centers. While the weight will determine the roller gauge, motor size, and roller diameter.

Process requirements
The process requirements include factors that govern how the conveyor moves and the specific conditions of the operation environment. Considerations include:

Distance between functional areas that items must travel
What is the path of travel? Are there any stops, elevation changes or curves?
Product orientation – must products be positioned a certain way to allow for easy barcode scanning, transfer etc. )?
Transfer speed – rapid, short movements or slower, steady movements?
Ambient environment
Space Available
Flow rate
Your conveyor system must be able handle the average transfer rate of your facility as well as peak periods due to seasonal fluctuations. The conveyor speed and length will be determined by the number of products that you have to move per hour or per minute.

Certain conveyors are also ideal for specific products. For example, a large plastic chain is ideal for moving plastic-footed wooden pallets. A chain-driven roller is the best choice for plastic-footed plastic pallets. The former is also better suited for moving smaller totes or boxes than the latter.

Transfer Requirements
It is important to consider the point at which items are transferred onto and off of a conveyor. The majority of conveyors are equipped with side-to-side transfers, powered transfer, dead plates and gravity rollers. This is done by using a variety of conveyors. A powered transfer may be required for products with a small footprint, whereas larger and longer items may require gravity rollers.

What is the cost of conveyor systems?
Manual transfer operations in modern warehouses are not able to meet the throughput required for cost-effective order fulfillment. A conveyor system improves productivity, ergonomics, and reduces product damage. It also provides better access to material and reduces workplace hazards.

The lifetime cost for purchasing, installing, and maintaining these systems can be high, especially for small and mid-sized operations. The cost can vary from hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars, depending on factors like:

Types of conveyor systems
Overall length
Need speed
Dimensions
Methode de transfert and curve
According to current estimates, a Belt Curve AC or a Roller Curve AC conveyer costs approximately $5,243 per linear foot and $2,686 under the following assumptions.

Curves – 90 degrees
Speeds – 65 to 90 feet/per second
9-inch rollers with 3-inch centers
Overall width — 24 Inches
Note: This cost is only the initial purchase price of the equipment. You’ll need to consider the costs of reorganizing your warehouse to accommodate the new conveyor system. Installation could be a lengthy process and affect warehouse activities and order fulfillment. The annual operating costs and maintenance would probably exceed the costs of initial installation and purchase.

Consider your budget, how quickly you want to finish your work, any space constraints and your plans for loading and unloading. Conveyor systems, for example, are not portable and require significant changes to your infrastructure. There are other, more practical and affordable options to automate your warehouse operations.

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