What are the Different Types of Conveyor Systems?

17 October 2017

Last time around, we learned all about industrial conveyor systems. In terms of productivity gains, these commodity carrying lines enhance workflow. They form the backbone of numerous manufacturing facilities. Furthermore, they’re used in mines and packaging plants, plus many other automated processing environments. Considering the sheer volume of possible industrial applications, there must be many different types of conveyor systems in use today, like the conventional belt system, right?

Belt Conveyors

They carry tired passengers through airport terminals and transport packages in warehouses, so this particular type of conveyor system is obviously a well-established member of this elite group. In heavier industrial applications, flexible elastomers can’t support this load, so they’re swapped out for tougher engineering plastics, plus a reinforced core, perhaps one made of a durable alloy. Powered drive pulleys and supporting drum pulleys carry the conveyance belt.

Gravity Conveyors

A walk through a warehouse or a loading dock is greeted with a view of the carefully aligned metal rollers. They’re the economical load transportation system that fits inside any packaging or assembly line as a non-powered product carriage solution. Mounted at a slight angle, it’s the force of gravity that rolls things forward, although a helping hand from a nearby employee always helps. Expect to see a lot of roller models in factories, but do know that this isn’t the only type of gravity conveyor on the market. Frictionless skate wheels and ball roller models also do very well in the packaging and shipping sector.

Sanitary Food Conveyors

Considering the population covering our precious globe, the food production industry must be at least as active as any other industrial application. Filled with high-volume processing elements, industrial conveyor systems have become an integral part of the food industry. Still, these are consumable products, not car parts or quarried minerals. As such, the metal belts used here must be easy to clean and easier to keep food safe. Stainless steels and easy-clean aluminium alloys are employed here, with the plated and chain-linked segments curving in response to the passage of the equipment line.

All-in-all, this has been a concise but abbreviated look into a fascinating series of product transporting conveyor systems. Because of the different products and their equally diverse production environments, different types of conveyor systems have developed to account for some unique transportation requirements. That food-safe metal, for instance, may be carrying acidic meats and vegetables, so the plated segments must be able to resist this corrosive influence. Similarly, there are powered versions of the gravity feed mechanism available, plus numerously profiled belt conveyor types.