Conveyor technology has widespread industrial application and it focuses on the use of a belt conveyor system. This conveyor system has at least two pulleys which are joined together with a continual loop called the conveyor belt. Both pulleys are powered and this causes the belt and material loop keeps moving forward. Belt conveyor systems are of two basic types; general material handling and specialised bulk material handling.
The usage of conveyors in industry
Conveyors are basically used to shift bulk materials from one location to another and are used in a wide variety of industries. There are so many manifestations of conveyor technology and the differences originate from the process by the conveyor system keeps moving materials. Raw materials, work in progress, unfinished goods and finished products produced by processing plants, farms and various distribution centers use conveyors for their industrial processes.
Passive conveyor uses a technique that places reliance on outside force which moves objects and a very good example of this a roller conveyor. This kind of conveyor has a range of free spinning rollers which are constructed of metal and framed and mounted.
The arrangement is much like a ladder filled with rungs. If a heavy object is placed on a conveyor system and given a slight push, it glides away smoothly on the rollers because there is very less friction. Trucks, transport systems, docks and the logistics industry make good use of this kind of passive conveyor technology.
Powered conveyor technology
The majority of application of conveyor technology is done through powered systems. Power roller conveyors use the basic technique as applied by passive rollers but they use powerful machines which keep spinning the rollers used for propulsion of objects/goods/packages along the line.
Mail centers and distribution networks often rely solely on this powerful conveyor technology. A good example of this system is belt conveyor systems.
This belt conveyor uses a heavy belt which constantly revolves around two cylindrical pulleys. If you observe the checkout line of a supermarket then you will understand that this is a very effective application of conveyor technology. The mining industry and the waste management industry uses powered conveyor system in their business processes.
Bucket conveyors and chain conveyors are other variations of power conveyors and they are widely used in different kinds of industries.
Assembly line and the conveyor technology
The assembly line is considered to be one of the most important developments in the history of industry. The conveyor technology is at the core of assembly line. Everything including magnetic conveyor, pneumatic conveyor, and mono rail conveyor use hot streams of highly compressed air which effectively moves along materials.
Some primitive forms of conveyor technology still have applications in coastal areas. A good example is logging fumes which are used to transport heavy logs with the help of wooden chutes. Sawmills in coastal areas use logging fumes which have systems measuring somewhere around 100 km. Conveyors have extensive application in many industries.