Introduction to Alpine Conveyors
In most factories, space is a premium, and conveyor location is often dependent on machinery and facility design. At AS Conveyor Systems, our goal is to simplify your processes rather than impede them. We have several solutions designed to give you more floor space and easy access to machinery and other areas of your facility.
The Alpine Slat Conveyor is a compact spiral configuration commonly used as an accumulation or elevating buffer zone between machines or as a process step for cooling or drying. It can also be used for line balancing or product changeover purposes.
Alpines can be configured as an elevating/ lowering system with a single or double serpentine configuration. Uses include an in-line accumulator with entry and exit at different levels, or an in-line or off-line accumulator with entry and exit at the same level.
- Product buffering during machine maintenance
- Use of vertical space when there is not enough floor space to accumulate more product
- Product movement at different levels
- Downstream product flow avoiding a bottleneck in your process
- Drying, cooling & curing time
- Product being produced needs more time for process or testing
- Product cycling/batching or to store product while another is being dispatched
- Reduce the forces working on a product when accumulating
- Serves as a walk thru/line access for product to divert onto
- Keeps a constant sequence while buffering or accumulating products
- Uses a gentle slope while changing elevations and preventing product damage
- Maximizes vertical space, ensures the efficient utilisation of machines with different speeds, and provides storage for pucks in FlexMove pallet system applications
- The accumulation zone is simple yet efficient and provides the possibility to continuously have bottleneck machines running
- Reduces the effects of machinery It will accumulate the products from one machine while the nest machine in the line is being repaired or adjusted.
- Option of adding more levels when additional capacity is needed
Technical Considerations for Alpine Conveyor Design
Products conveyed on Alpine Conveyors can be round, square, oval or even rectangular. If accumulation is required, attention does need to be paid to how the product accumulate in the corners. Round products obviously convey the best.
Due to general long length of Alpines, they typically require the use of wheel bend corners. This limits available conveyor widths to 65, 85, 105 and 150 mm.
Product width can be within the conveyor frame or slightly wider. Products wider than the conveyor should be limited to 40% of the conveyor width.
The direction of the chain, the length of the conveyor needed, and the elevation change will help determine the best choice for handling the chain. The two options are: to return the chain on the bottom of the conveyor, or use a top running chain that returns the chain to the infeed.
- Return Chain: Return chain Alpines have the chain running on the top side and return side, similar to a typical conveyor. This style is normally used for smaller Alpine units up to 4 layers and less than 23 meters (75 ft) long.
- Top Running Chain: Top running chain runs on the top side of the conveyor only, and can be returned down the end of the Alpine, and back to the drive tail. This feature is used for larger Alpine units and is generally limited to a total of 76 meters (250 ft) of chain.
For more information and a free quotation, visit AS Conveyor Systems