AGV with conveyor deck

AGV with conveyor deck

April 22, 2021

Creform Corporation

Greer, South Carolina – Creform Corp. has designed and built a custom AGV system using its FH-B50066 bolt-on AGV drive, single-directional unit. The system features two drive wheels – one located toward the front and a second toward the rear. Each end independently follows the guidepath for the accurate and consistent travel necessary for smooth conveyor transfers. The system includes three Creform AGVs used by the customer to support process equipment for around-the-clock operation.

The AGV with single conveyor deck, part of the plant-wide use of Creform AGVs, has overall dimensions of 67" L x 46" W x 57" T with a conveyor transfer height of 30". The conveyor area is 26" wide and 65" long and can carry up to 1455 lb. (660kg) load capacity. It can travel at speeds up 50m/min and along an approximate 120ft. long magnetic tape guide. Floor-positioned RFID tags are used for the control of speed and obstacle sensor views.

The unit essentially acts as a transfer vehicle between conveyors at multiple manufacturing points and features a powered conveyor deck for automatic load transfers. A clear plastic cover over the conveyor deck helps keep parts being carried clean. Mechanical load safety-stops rotate down when pulling into the conveyor stations to allow transfers. Gravity causes them to rotate back up when leaving the transfer point to ensure that the load is secure during transport.

Photocells on the AGV’s conveyor deck are used for load control functions and serve to verify that the load is secure during travel, as well as used for slow-down and stop functions. Any load shift is detected and will stop the AGV. Optical communication devices coordinate the conveyor operation between the AGV and stationary floor conveyors. The AGV features radio communication to interface with the traffic management system to keep the system moving efficiently. The unit features a heavy-duty fabricated steel base for strength and rigidity.

The unit incorporates a 24V system, powered by two 12V AGM batteries. The opportunity charging system, activated by photocells, minimizes need for the user to manually change batteries. The batteries are automatically charged each time the AGV pulls into the transfer station along the route. No human intervention is necessary.

Safety category 3 features on the AGV includes a safety circuit to cut power, audible warning device, flashing light, E-stops, LED light band along both sides of the AGV and a laser scanner on both ends of the AGV. An HMI touch screen is used for user and maintenance interface with an operator screen positioned at the top of the AGV control box.

The Creform System is used to create an array of material handling and efficiency enhancing devices and is a proven component in continuous improvement and Lean Manufacturing programs. The company partners with customers in developing and implementing these programs.