Automated Systems Offer More Than You Think

Implementing an automated material handling system offers a variety of traditional benefits, like improved productivity and increased product quality.

But they also offer safety and health benefits that can provide a better working environment for employees, including:

Consistent, Predictable Operation
An automated system will run the process the same way each time, offering consistent, predictable operation. A Human Machine Interface (HMI) can also report data from each step to an operator, providing necessary information at a safe distance from the operation.

Built-in Program Safeties
Automated systems are always working and reviewing every step along the way. Built-in programmed safety logic is constantly checking the operation of the system, and ensuring that each step takes place at the proper time. The system will stop operation and alert an operator if there is a problem before an accident can occur, protecting employees and equipment.

Safer Working Environment
A safer working environment for employees is provided by eliminating an operator’s proximity to trip hazards and slick surfaces.  Exposure to caustic fumes, hazardous chemicals, and extreme heat can also be reduced.

Want to explore further?  Check out our free Automated Systems webinar, which explains types of automated systems, traditional benefits, and how to get organizational buy-in to implement an automated system.  It includes a complimentary Automation Preparation Worksheet to kick off your automation project.

 

Seven Benefits of Modernizing Your Cranes to VFDs

impulse-series-groupPerhaps no other technological development in nearly 40 years has done more to revolutionize overhead crane design than the AC Variable Frequency Drive (VFD). Today’s Variable Frequency Controls and Flux Vector Motor Controls have become the industry standard for crane control. Recent improvements in drive technology, such as a new generation of Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBTs), sensor-less vector control, powerful microprocessors with flash memory, and improved algorithms, have allowed the downsizing of the power platforms and the inclusion of many high-performance features.

There are numerous benefits of using a VFD to control a hoist or crane, including:

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New Product Line: Cable Reels

Magnetek is excited to announce our new line of cable reels!

Our cable reel product line is a superior solution to effectively and compactly manage large lengths of cable. The cable reel is fixed to a specific point, while the cable end connects to the moving part of the equipment.

Magnetek offers both spring driven and motorized electric cable reels, as well as slip ring assemblies. Read more

Project Exploration: Red River Pedestrian Bridge

superior-5Springtime thaws and flooding along the Red River have been annual problems for the cities of Moorhead, Minnesota and Fargo, North Dakota. Occasionally, flood waters have risen up to 40 feet above the river bank and damaged businesses, homes, and surrounding infrastructure. To prevent recurring damage to a pedestrian bridge between the two cities and decrease removal and replacement costs, a 168-foot bridge was commissioned with a self-contained lifting system, including new Magnetek radio remote controls and adjustable frequency drives.

CHALLENGE

  • Introduce lifting functionality to a new pedestrian bridge
  • Decrease likelihood of inclement weather damage
  • Reduce costs for replacement equipment and seasonal bridge removal
  • Coordinate two hoist operations to balance lifting motions

SOLUTION

  • Two 40-ton hoists using Magnetek’s IMPULSE®•VG+ crane control drives and radio remote controls
  • Decreased potential damage opportunities from flood waters or thawing ice
  • Eliminated need for seasonal removal of the bridge by outside contractors
  • Trenched fiber optic cable beneath riverbed to synchronize lifting

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New Magnetek Blog!

Welcome to Magnetek Material Handling’s new blog!

This blog will be packed with informative discussions on power control solutions that will improve the productivity and safety of material handling systems. Explore solutions and success stories that will improve the way materials are managed in your facility.

Be notified of the latest posts – enter your email address under “Follow Blog” in the right sidebar.

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The first 100 Blog followers will be entered into a drawing to win one of five $100 Amazon gift cards!

 

 

Note: Employees of Magnetek and Columbus McKinnon Corporation are ineligible for the drawing.

Collision Avoidance Systems Increase Safety and Reduce Maintenance Costs

Magnetek’s collision avoidance systems can help prevent accidents before they happen, protecting people, the facility, and the cranes. Our collision avoidance systems prevent crane-to-crane and crane-to-end stop collisions which increases operator safety and reduces system maintenance.
collision-avoidance-systems
Magnetek offers three collision avoidance systems which can be applied to all types of overhead cranes or monorails with adjustable frequency drives, soft starters, or contactor controls. Multiple configurations are available so customers can choose the exact functionality, size, and style to fit their application needs. All Magnetek’s collision avoidance systems are rated IP65 or better. The collision avoidance systems are “fail-safe”, which means that if the sensor would lose power, motion of the crane would be stopped and restricted.

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Project Exploration: Newport News Shipbuilding System Upgrade

newport-3As the largest shipbuilding company in the United States, Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) needs to be at the top of their game to effectively build the most advanced ships in the world. This includes keeping their overhead and gantry crane equipment running at the most efficient levels. Intended to avoid any production slowdowns due to wearing parts, system failures, or crane downtime, NNS scheduled 10-15 year overhauls of multiple cranes and their components.

NNS was able to improve coordination among the system components, enhance facility safety, and minimize downtime by implementing a solid crane modernization program. Properly planning an effective modernization program was key in updating drives and wireless control systems in a timely manner to keep the facility running at a high level.

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