Improved Reliability & Shipping Accuracy
With ever changing customer behaviours, new digital communication challenges and the rapid increase in eCommerce business means the UK’s leading consumer delivery specialist and long-term customer to L.A.C, is continually looking to improve its efficiency and innovation.
The distribution hub based up in the Northwest required an upgrade to current operations. With any upgrade or new system implementation, L.A.C are always mindful to ensure that its solutions can be easily and efficiently scaled up and down upon demand, whilst being equipped with the necessary infrastructure to cope with growing volumes during longer periods of intense activity.
Project “Flyer Van Automation” required an automated transport and sortation solution to accommodate 120 van loads per day, processing the traffic via a scanning tower and automated sortation, directly onto 38 existing outfeed boom conveyors which would provide a consistent flow of around 5,000 parcels per hour.
L.A.C’s new range of belt conveyors
The current operation required a lot of human intervention with vans being offloaded from outside the building into cages, which were then manually hauled into the hub for sortation and then transferred to the appropriate 38 outfeed doors. The introduction of an automated system would reduce the manual labour currently associated with the process therefore reducing/eliminating the number of “mis sorts” due to human error. The new system would also offer increased throughputs while providing full traceability of parcels, polybags and irregular shaped traffic.
The solution utilised circa 350 metres of L.A.C manufactured, Post and Parcel conveyor, designed specifically to meet the exacting standards of the hugely demanding Post and Parcel handling industry. L.A.C’s new range of belt conveyors and multi-functioning switch sorter units provide the robust, efficient, and precise product movement this industry sector insists upon. Ideal for the variety of shapes, sizes and loads required, offering up to 80Kg/metre, this high performance, reliable range of equipment is modular in design, providing easy installation and integration across the range of products.
Infeed conveyor modules (located outside the hub) consisted of a 14-meter-long, one sided, belt conveyors, hot dipped galvanized finish providing weather protection. Operators load products onto the high-speed two-tier conveyor from a dedicated loading point. The belts on infeed utilised gauge strips at 600mm pitch to provide initial gapping of product with additional gapping created on belt conveyors inside the hub prior to the induct conveyors.
Once the parcel is on the in-feeding conveyor it automatically travels into the hub and inclines up to a 5-sided camera scanning tower (with volumizing functionality) via suitably located gapping belts. If the parcel is oversized, then the system will reject the parcel (either using the sorter, if the parcels can be processed on the machine or by stopping the infeed and waiting for an operator to remove it if the parcel is over-sized). The control system identified the barcode (either 1D or 2D) and called an API to ensure the parcel is transferred to the correct destination or will revert to a local lookup table to make the routing decision.
Once the scanning system has obtained the identity and volume of the parcel, the system indexed the parcel onto the automatic sorter with the parcel then, diverted to one of the multiple destinations dependent on barcode etc. The system offered provision for rejecting parcels and the sorter continuously monitored the fill level of the destinations and reject area to ensure a continuous flow is maintained.
To remove the manual labour currently associated with the flyer van traffic sortation process
To provide unloading station for up to 6 vans
To provide conveyor lines to feed Beumer sorter inducts at a rate of 5000 parcels per hour
Improve sorter throughput
Ensure product separation
Reduction in product handling cost per item
to be compatible with current customer host/business systems and to be able to interface with the customer APL
To reduce manual handling of product.
Key services & Technologies
Galvanised Conveyors for use outside the main building
900mm wide belt conveyors, inclined and horizontal
5 side camera scanning
EXPD product volumetrics
mezzanine floor installed above existing inducts covering an area of 1,115.87m2
Electrical integration with Beumer system
Additional 5000 parcels per hour delivered to Beumer Inducts
Data capture for final destination sortation
Large Mezzanine floor installed in phases over the existing live boom unloading positions
Compact belt conveyor without any interfering contours – fits in the smallest gaps
Belt conveyor GUF-P 2000 CA, compact belt conveyor without any interfering contours
For most conveying applications, a compact conveyor frame on the belt conveyor is crucial. Obstructing contours, such as the drive, may protrude and be a little larger, and will mostly be outside the relevant area of the machine. If the entire conveyor is to be installed inside a machine, however, it will usually need to have few or no obstructing contours. In such cases, an internal motor is recommended
The GUF-P 2000 belt conveyor, the most versatile belt conveyor series produced by the mk Technology Group, is now available with a compact and powerful 24 V drum motor. Called the GUF-P 2000 CA, it is absolutely ideal for integrating into systems without much installation space. The ø 53 mm drive roller combined with the 50 mm tall conveyor frame profile produces a conveyor that is extremely flat without any obstructing edges. Along with start/stop control, the control module enables you to set multiple speeds and change the conveying direction.
With a permissible total load of up to 15 kg, the GUF-P 2000 CA is ideal for the majority of conveying tasks in the packaging or plastics industry. The 24 V DC drive also allows for a battery power supply. As a result, the conveyor is also perfect for use as driven load handling equipment for automated guided vehicle (AGV) systems. Furthermore, its compactness and lack of interfering contours means it can be installed on tables in workshops, schools, laboratories and elsewhere. In such environments, the GUF-P 2000 CA can also fulfil technical cleanliness requirements thanks to its clean contours.
Height: conveyor frame: 50 mm (ø 53 mm driving roll)
Lengths: 380 to 5000 mm
Widths: 300 to 600 mm
Load: max. 15 kg
Speed: up to 60 m/min.
Drive: 24 V DC, reversing
Accessories: side rails, stand systems, and so on, as is standard with the GUF-P 2000
The GUF-P 2000 belt conveyor with the larger ø 81.5 mm drum motor remains available under the name GUF-P 2000 CB.
Ammeraal Beltech introduces Duraclean – a revolutionary synthetic non-stick belt
Ammeraal Beltech is a world leader in providing complex conveying solutions. The history of the company began with the development of a groundbreaking belt for the Bakery Industry. Today, the company’s products are available in over 150 countries around the globe and new launches are scheduled throughout the year. This time, it conquers the market with Duraclean – a synthetic belt perfect for processing sticky foods in the Bakery & Confectionery Industry and not only.
Bakery and Confectionery Industry: major challenges
Some products require specific treatment, and the whole industry poses particular challenges. Energy bars, snacks, and even ready-to-eat meals need delicate handling as the products are prone to damage. The integrity and quality of goods need to be secured.
Baked foodstuffs are often dense or feature ingredients that leave a residue, such as fillings, fruit, and jams, which may lead to stickiness. If a sticky component gets trapped in the production line, extra time is needed to remove it and clean the conveyor. Not to mention the waste of the product itself. The whole production process is thus slowed down, and most manufacturers in this field value efficiency. They need to process large volumes of goods at a fast pace. However, it’s important to balance speed with quality, ensuring size, taste and presentation are uniform across the batch.
Duraclean – a new level in non-stick belting
Ammeraal Beltech understands Bakery and Confectionery pain points and has created a solution to address them all: Duraclean, a synthetic belt for sticky products.
Its thermoplastic compound blended cover ensures excellent mechanical properties and is suitable for use with belt scrapers and knife edge transfer applications.
Duraclean – major advantages for your business
Duraclean offers a number of improvements for the bakery and confectionery manufacturers. Excellent product release properties, high abrasion resistance, leading to longer service life, wide working temperature range …just to name a few.
The design of the belt grants users longer belt life and improved hygiene standards. The solution significantly reduces the risk of cross-contamination, is easy to sanitise and compliant with EC 1935/2004 and FDA food safety standards.
Contact Ammeraal Beltech experts
If you are willing to discover the whole potential of Duraclean, please contact Ammeraal Beltech experts. The team will help you optimise your processing line and enhance satisfaction of your customers. For more information about product portfolio dedicated to the bakery and confectionary industry, visit Ammeraal Beltech website
Technical information bulletin the effects of ozone on rubber conveyor belts
The effects of exposure to ozone
Ozone occurs naturally in the upper atmosphere. At high altitude, it acts as a protective shield by absorbing harmful ultraviolet rays. However, at low altitude, the ozone itself becomes a pollutant. Exposure to ozone increases the acidity of carbon black surfaces and causes reactions to take place within the molecular structure of the rubber. This has several consequences such as a surface cracking and a decrease in the tensile strength of the rubber. The actual level of ozone concentrations at ground level, and therefore the level of
exposure, can differ greatly from one location to another depending on geographical and climatic conditions. The general concentration of ozone is from 0 to 6 parts per hundred million parts of air. Coastal areas have particularly high levels of ozone pollution. Ozone also occurs in cities and industrialised areas, when it is formed by the photolysis of nitrogen dioxide from automobile exhaust and industrial discharges, where ozone levels can range from 5 to 25 parts per hundred million parts of air.
Environmental and safety concerns
Belts that do not operate under shelter are especially prone to surface cracking, which can be extremely detrimental in terms of the performance of the belt and its working life.
Even more significant are the environmental and health and safety consequences of the damage caused by ozone exposure because dust particles from the materials being conveyed penetrate the surface cracks and are then discharged (shaken out) on the return (underside) run of the belt.
At first glance, fine cracks in the surface rubber may not seem to be a major problem but over a period the rubber becomes increasingly brittle. Transversal cracks deepen under the repeated stress of passing over the pulleys and drums and, if the conveyor has a relatively short transition distance, longitudinal cracks can also begin to appear.
Again, surface cracking may not initially seem to be a cause of concern but there are often hidden long-term effects.
One of those hidden effects is that moisture and other fluids seep into the cracks and penetrate through the belt covers
down to the carcass of the belt. If the belt is carrying product such as household waste, grain, wood/waste or biomass then the oils and resins that penetrate through to the carcass will cause the belt to swell and distort very badly.
The effects of ultra violet radiation
Ultraviolet radiation causes chemical reactions to take place within rubber and the rapid decline in the ozone layer in the upper atmosphere over the past several decades is allowing an increasing level of UV radiation to reach the earth’s surface. Ultraviolet light from sunlight and fluorescent lighting accelerates deterioration because it produces photochemical reactions that promote the oxidation of the surface of the rubber resulting in a loss in mechanical strength.
EN/ISO 1431 International standards
To scientifically measure resistance to ozone, samples are placed under tension (20% elongation) inside the ozone testing cabinet and exposed to highly concentrated levels of ozone for a period up to 96 hours. At Dunlop the pass criteria is that the rubber sample does not show any signs of cracking after 96 hours (@ 20°C, 50 pphm and 20% strain) inside the ozone cabinet. Every sample is closely examined for evidence of cracking at two-hourly intervals and the results carefully measured and recorded. As a general rule, based on experience, failure to exceed more than 8 hours under test without surface cracking will most certainly mean that the belt will start to deteriorate in less than 2 years. In many cases, particularly in coastal locations, deterioration will begin within a matter of months.
At Dunlop Conveyor Belting we were amongst the very first to introduce mandatory testing to EN/ISO 1431 international standards. As a direct result, special anti-oxidant additives that act as highly efficient anti-ozonants were introduced into all of our rubber compound recipes to provide protection against the damaging effects of ozone and ultra violet.
Always insist that your belt supplier provides written verification that their belts undergo stringent conditional
As often as not, the quality of a belt (including its ability to resist wear) is reflected in its price. It is always worth the effort to check the original manufacturers specifications very carefully and ask for documented evidence of tested performance compared to the relevant international standard before placing your order.
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