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For interconnected, intelligent conveying

11 May 2018

Drives & Controls 2018 saw the first live demonstration in the UK of Mitsubishi Electric’s latest Linear Transfer System (LTS) with Smart Carriage technology for the integration of production and packaging.

The innovative line transfer solution, combined with the unique Smart Carriages, provides an intelligent transport system for the flow of goods while ensuring maximum productivity and safety.

The LTS and its Smart Carriages bring plant transport to the forefront of Industry 4.0 by providing a conveying system with unprecedented autonomy and onboard intelligence features.

One of the main features of differentiation for the Smart Carriages is their on-board power supplies that allow the integration of sensors, actuators and memory onto the transport carriers. These make the carriages smart, interconnected devices that can collect and store product information and allow flexible unique journeys with live communication between stations.

Autonomous vehicles

The integrated, decentralised intelligence enables the carriers to optimise their routes independently, e.g. to respond to congestions on the track. Furthermore, the Smart Carriage sensors allow the conveyors to accelerate or brake based on where other carriers are on the line.

The same capabilities can be used to create a safe environment for human operators. The sensors, combined with on board safety features such as Safe Torque Off (STO) and Safely Limited Speed (SLS) detect when an operator is close to the conveyor system and slow the carriages nearby, while keeping the others who are at a safe distance, at normal speed.

Mobile processes

Moreover, it is possible for Smart Carriages to perform additional processing steps while transporting goods. In fact, it is possible to cool, measure or weigh the goods being transported by equipping the conveyor with the necessary equipment.

The flexibility of the system, combined with its efficiency, makes the LTS the ideal, customisable solution for a wide range of industrial applications.