Amber Automation Elevators & Lowerators
Many automated floor conveyor systems need to operate continuously on more than one floor of a warehouse or factory building. A means of raising or lowering product loads between different elevations of the conveyor system is therefore required, often within very restricted floor space. Elevators and lowerators are an efficient means of achieving this.
Amber Automation offers several types of elevator / lowerator, however the broad principle of operation is the same for all of them. The product load arrives on a conveyor at which point it is accepted and transferred onto the elevator / lowerator which in turn takes it to its new elevation and then discharges it to another conveyor for onward transit.
Product loads enter the elevator/lowerator in single file in the upright position. The dual gripper chain activates to firmly clamp the product loads and turn them through 90°. The product loads are then either raised or lowered to their new elevation and then returned to their upright orientation before being discharged in single file on to the downstream conveyor.
Continuous Platform Elevators
Continuous platform elevators, sometimes referred to as Paternoster type elevators, consist of a number of platforms made with slats to give them flexibility and which continuously cycle around in a loop. They are designed for high throughputs of unit loads between floor levels and are capable of handling a variety of different product load sizes up to approx 25Kg in weight through elevation changes of 8m at a rate of up to 1200 units per hour. The basic operating procedure is that as a product load arrives at the in-feed position a signal is generated to tell the elevator / lowerator it is waiting. Upon arrival of the next free platform the product load is transferred onto it and carried vertically to its discharge position. In this way product loads accumulating on an in-feed conveyor are automatically transferred with optimum efficiency.
Reciprocating Platform Elevators
Reciprocating vertical elevators consist of a single horizontal platform with a conveyor belt mounted on it. The platform is suspended on chains within a 4 post steel framed shaft. The chains pass over a series of sprockets which are coupled by a shaft to a geared motor unit thus enabling the platform to move up and down. They can be designed to vertically transfer varying sized individual loads weighing up to 2000Kg, between multiple levels. This type of elevator is particularly useful where load carrying capacity over greater vertical distances is the primary concern rather than high throughput.
Spiral Conveyor Towers
Spiral conveyor towers potentially offer the smallest footprint of all types of elevator/lowerator. In circumstances where product loads are to be raised, powered spiral belt curves (see Gramac Quartz) supplied with high grip belts can be put together and supported off a central column to form a spiral belt conveyor tower. These have the advantage of providing a continuous smooth throughput of product loads. Powered spiral belt curve towers can be effective for changes in elevation of up to 10m and can be designed and manufactured with radius, gradient, belt width and total angle subtended tailored to match each specific situation.
Gravity Spiral Towers
Where the requirement is to lower only product loads then a free running roller or skatewheel spiral tower may be used. These rely on the force of gravity acting on the product loads to cause them to descend the spiral tower. The speed of descent may be regulated by fitting braked rollers or skatewheels.