As automation becomes more integrated into medium- and heavy-load accumulation and assembly applications, the need for conveyors with zoning capabilities increases. Dorner’s Edge Roller Technology (ERT250) precision edge roller pallet and tray handling conveyors are engineered specifically to handle zone functionality.
Creating zones along a conveyor is an important feature for applications where product accumulates before moving on to a downstream action, or for assembly applications where product moves from one stage to the next. Primarily, zones are important as they prevent pallets from bumping into each other during movement (known as back pressure) which can disturb product orientation or even damage more delicate products.
The solution is to create no-contact zones along the conveyor. These zones offer precision traffic control of product through zone roller technology that’s powered by a patented linear gearbox drive system. Creating zones is accomplished by simply removing a lower gear to locate a split between zones. Each zone acts independently of other zones and is powered by a brushless DC gearmotor.
The ERT250 uses rollers to move pallet conveyors smoothly with no friction (a byproduct often seen in belt-driven platforms). The ERT250 uses pallet sensors and control logic to determine when a pallet is free to move forward, or if a pallet is stopped downstream. If a pallet is required to stop, it will stop in the next zone. Motors operate only when pallets advance forward or reverse. Multiple zones can be created on a single conveyor. Using zones reduces the number of stacked-up pallets, while still providing effective accumulation capabilities.
The ERT250 is also ideal for applications calling for pallet or tray handling with no- and low-back pressure accumulation, and cleanroom applications such as medical product or device manufacturing, assembly, packaging and others.
Technical specifications for single and multiple zones on the ERT250 include:
- Widths 100 mm to 960 mm wide
- 38 mm diameter rollers on 50 mm centers
- Loads up to 250 lbs per pallet or tray
- Loads up to 15 lbs per roller
- 150 mm long tray minimum
- Speeds up to 37 m (121 ft) per min
- Aluminum frame with two T-slots
- Energy efficient brushless DC gearmotors and controllers; motor controllers use Ethernet IP for easy communication
- Automation modules (240 mm width minimum)
- Navigate 90° and 180° corners
- Lift and transfer
- Lift and locate
- 90° pusher