Vertical Conveyors Information
Vertical conveyors are used to lift or lower loads between levels in intermittent flow operations and environments where horizontal space is limited. There are two main types of vertical conveyors: reciprocating and continuous. Typically, vertical conveyors are used in bulk material handling or unit handling applications. They are commonly referred to as freight elevators, material elevators, platform lifts, dumbwaiters, and mezzanine lifts. Many different categories of vertical conveyors are available. Examples include air transfer tables and ball transfer tables, belt conveyors, bucket conveyors, cart-on-track conveyors, chute conveyors, diverters, drag conveyors, screw conveyors, flexible screw conveyors, pneumatic tube conveyors, roller conveyors, vertical reciprocating conveyors, and vertical continuous conveyors.
Selecting Vertical Conveyors
Selecting vertical conveyors requires an understanding of product types. Air transfer and ball transfer tables are used in applications which require the manual rotation or positioning of items. Belt conveyors use an endless, fabric belt and include flat belt, magnetic belt and trough belt conveyors. Bucket conveyors consist of a bucket elevator and an endless belt or chain with a series of attached buckets. Cart-on-track conveyors are used to pull a cart along a track. Chute conveyors are used to link two powered conveyors together. Diverters are used to move products off the main conveyor by pulling or pushing. Drag conveyors (drag chain conveyors) pull or drag material through a tube or U-shaped trough. Screw conveyors consist of a helical flight fastened around a rigid pipe or solid shaft, mounted within a tubular or U-shaped trough. Pneumatic tube conveyors use low-pressure air to either push or pull a short closed cylinder through a pipe between the origin and destination. Roller conveyors can be a powered or non-powered. Vertical reciprocating conveyors use a single platform, forks or cage to lift or lower loads between various levels in intermittent flow operations. Vertical continuous conveyors use multiple platforms, forks or cages to lift or lower loads between various levels in intermittent flow operations.
Performance Specifications and Features
Vertical conveyors differ in terms of performance specifications and features. Performance specifications for vertical conveyors include maximum load, load capacity, speed, volume transported, mass flow, and number of pieces per minute. In terms of features, some products are washdown-capable or rated for sanitary applications. Others provide sorting capabilities or have anti-static features.