This stainless steel constructed plastic belt conveyor is designed for accumulating flat or low -in-height products. This particular project was designed for a raw foods but the concept can be used for many applications. When the downstream process pauses, the accumulation system is activated and receives product from the upstream transport conveyor to allow the upstream machines to empty, or to continue their process for a limited time. The initial decline noser of the upstream conveyor transfers product onto the shuttle accumulation conveyor which extends to absorb the flow of product even though its belt is not running. Once the downstream is again ready to receive product, the shuttle accumulation conveyor retracts and its belt is powered on to discharge product off of the accumulation conveyor, onto the downstream transport conveyor. The shuttle accumulation design was made for accumulating mass flow or single file product by extenidng and extracting a secondary accumulation conveyor located between transportation conveyors. By extending and retracting the secondary accumulation conveyor, one effectively expands and contracts the conveying surface dynamically, balancing production flow and/or giving the ability to clear out upstream equipment when downstream equipment experiences outages.
Benefits or Variations:
- The same unit could combine both dynamic accumulation and clear out modes of operation.
- Different lengths or have multiple levels can be incorporated to increase accumulation values.
- The advantage that this system has over conventional inline conveyor systems is the ability to dynamically accumulate product and clear upstream equipment under downstream outage conditions.
- Other configurations can be provided where a product could accumulate on a retract stroke and not be limited by product height.
- Application could include bakery, confectionary, other food products — either packaged or unpackaged — as well as many other industries.