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What is Accumulation Conveyor?

Accumulation conveyor is a common component of most modern conveyor systems, be it minimum or zero pressure, belted or roller, or fixed zone or dynamic. If you’re in the market to design and install a conveyor system, odds are you’re going to need to use some sort of accumulation conveyor in order to have the product control needed for complex material handling layouts. This article will break down the differences between the two primary types of accumulation conveyor — minimum pressure and zero pressure. Stay tuned for a future blog post where we go into more detail about the best uses for accumulation conveyor. 


Minimum Pressure Accumulation Conveyor

Minimum pressure conveyor is normally a type of belt driven roller conveyor with a component that allows the drive of rollers to be increased or reduced as needed. The purpose of this adjustment is to reduce the back pressure on the total distributed load. Back pressure is essentially how much weight is being pressed against product as it travels along the conveyor. Minimum pressure conveyor is a minimalist, low-tech solution to reducing back pressure. The best kinds of minimum pressure accumulation conveyor can reduce back pressure to as little as 2% of the total load. This means that when the product does end up driven together at the end of a line, the pressure of the packages upstream will not crush the front package.


Zero Pressure Accumulation Conveyor

If minimum pressure conveyor is a low-tech way of minimizing back pressure, zero pressure conveyor is a high-tech way of completely eliminating it. Zero pressure conveyor uses sensors to divide the conveyor line into various zones that accumulate product. These sensors can either be pressure contact rollers or different kinds of photo-sensors. There are plenty of pressure contact rollers still in use today, but it’s quickly going out of style. The majority of zero pressure conveyor we see shipped out today rely on photo-sensors, largely due to the technology becoming cheaper and more widely available. The most common sensor type used in zero pressure conveyor is retro-reflective photo-eyes. The first package will travel through the zones until it stops at the last photo-eye, blocking it and sending a stop signal to the previous photo-eye. When the second package arrives at the zone prior to the first, the rollers will stop and hold the package in place, sending a signal to the third zone and so on. These packages will never touch, hence the name zero pressure. This is critical when conveying packages of varying weights and sizes where a much larger package could easily crush a smaller one if not handled properly.


CCS – Zero Pressure Accumulation Experts

Zero pressure accumulation MDR conveyor is our specialty. We offer several different types of this conveyor, including standard MDR conveyor, MDR spiral conveyor and MDR pallet conveyor and MDR Flex conveyor. If you’re in need of zero pressure accumulation conveyor, there is a good chance we can help you. Please reach out to Joel Thomas at at joelthomas@cartercontrols.com, by phone at 240-818-1835 for more details.

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