A precise definition of a conveyor belt system is that it is a piece of mechanical controlling equipment that transports materials from one place to another. They are extemporary useful in the transportation of bulky materials. They are critical in the packaging and material handling industries as they are efficient in the moving of materials. Industrial Conveyors can carry a broad range of commodities but the most common are food items, wood and furniture and animal feeds. Conveyor systems vary according to their various needs by different industries. The very common is the chain conveyor (floor or overhead). They consist of enclosed tracks, power and free, hand pushed trolleys, towlines and I-beam.
What To Consider Before Selecting a Conveyor Belt
The reason conveyor systems are widespread across various industries is the fact that they safely transport materials from one location to another. They are installable anywhere and are safer than any other machine used to move materials. They are choosy, not selective on the sizes, shapes and weight of the materials. Conveyor systems are implanted with an advanced safety feature meant to prevent accidents. The wide range of conveyor systems, which include mechanical, hydraulics and fully automated systems, are equipped to meet separate needs. There are some factors to consider before any selection of a conveyor belt. Transportation, material sizes, accumulation and sorting, weight and shape are the most important factors to consider. With the rapid growth of industries, conveyor systems makers are receiving maximum exposure in industries such as pharmaceuticals, automotive, production and packaging plants. There also exists portable conveyors, and they are growing fast in the construction sector in Europe, Asia and North America. Industrial facilities and packaging factories are famous for purchasing the chain conveyors, line shaft roller conveyors and conveyor belts. Civil and commercial sectors, such as airports and shopping malls, are also increasingly implementing conveyors.
There are almost twenty types of conveyors, but they are mostly classified via their mode of transportation. The main conveyors include; pneumatic conveyor system, vibrating conveyor system, flexible conveyor systems, vertical and spiral conveyor systems, and heavy duty rear conveyors.
Pneumatic Conveyors Systems
All pneumatic systems require ducts or pipes known as transportation lines that convey a stream of air and a mixture of materials. These materials are either free flowing, dry pulverised or light powdery materials such as fly ash and cement. These products are moved via tubes with air pressure, which also allows for extra vertical versatility. Pneumatic conveyors are either dilute-phase systems or carrier systems. The difference is that carrier systems transport items from entry to an exit point such as a bank drive-through window and money exchanging pneumatic tubes. Dilute-phase systems utilise push –pull pressure to navigate objects through diverse entry-exit points. Vacuums, blowers or compressors are the most commonly used in the generation of air. It all depends on the efficiency and economy of developing the system.
Industrial Vibrating Conveyor Systems
Vibrating conveyor systems are machines with solid conveying surfaces that are turned up on the side to configure a trough. They are extensively used in calibre food applications where low maintenance, sanitation and wash-down are essential. Vibrating conveyors are best suited for dirty, extremely hot, harsh and corrosive environments. They can transport new cast metal parts which can reach upwards 820 degrees Celsius. Their fixed nature of convey pans vibrating allows it to perform extra tasks such as screening, sorting, orienting and classifying parts. Vibrating conveyors are designed in such a way that they can transport items at an angle exceeding 45 degrees using specific pan shapes. Flat plans will only convey pieces at a maximum incline of 5 degrees from a horizontal line.
Flexible Conveyor System
The flexible conveyor system is founded on a conveyor beam in stainless steel or aluminium. It has a low friction slide rails that guide a plastic multi-flexing chain. Items to be transported navigate directly on the conveyor or on carriers. These conveyors can keep production lines flowing as they can be worked around blockages. They are suitable to work in multiple environments as they developed at varying levels. They are commonly used in case packing, pharmaceuticals and food packaging as well as retail stores.
Automated Vertical Conveyors
Vertical conveyors, also known as freight lifts and material lifts, are conveyor structures used to lower or raise items to different levels of a facility in the conducting process. These conveyors are mostly applied in industrial assembly processes. They are used to convey materials at various floors. They look similar to freight elevators, but they are not fortified to carry people, only materials. Vertical lift conveyors have two adjustment parallel conveyors meant for simultaneous inclining movement of adjacent surfaces of the parallel conveyors. One conveyor has spaced flats intended for conveying large food products. The twin conveyors rotate in different directions but are handled from the same gearbox to allow equal belt speed. This conveyor can either be automatically or manually controlled and loaded. They can systematically be joined together with horizontal conveyors to develop a unified handling assembly line.
Spiral conveyors lower and raise materials to differing heights of a facility, similar to vertical conveyors. The difference between them is that spiral conveyors can convey content loads in a continuous flow. They are common in industries that require a greater output of materials such as the retail case packaging, pharmaceuticals, food and beverages. They integrate these conveyors to their systems over prevailing vertical conveyors as they are able to simplify high throughput. Most of the spiral conveyors can only manage an incline and decline angle of 11 degrees or less. The small angle ensures items do not slide and tumble off during operation.
Heavy Duty Roller Conveyors
Handling of heavy equipment and products can be made easier and time effectively through the use heavy duty roller conveyors. They can move items of at least 500lbs at a speed of 75 feet/minute. Heavy duty roller conveyors range from gravity roller conveyors, pallet accumulation conveyors, chain driven live roller conveyors to chain and roller transfers. Their primary tasks are bi-directional material handling.
Conveyor belts are now majorly known as the lifeline of industry’s ability to convey materials in an efficient and timely fashion. To ensure these conveyor systems work at full capacity, they should be regularly inspected, their motors and reducers monitored adequately train the personnel and store important key parts