Creform's CA-B50100 bi-directional AGV
Creform has introduced a custom-designed bi-directional AGV, the CA-B50100 model, which features radio link to Creform’s vehicle traffic control system for efficient material flow via vehicle routing. The system replaces forklifts and provides production efficiencies of automation and safe handling.
The fabricated steel AGV base is constructed for strength and durability with fixtures designed to hold various sized panels (in automotive assembly, for example). Cushioned mounts hold panels separate from one another to secure and minimize the risk of damage. The AGV can run two shifts per day on a route that features six stops. The vehicle stops automatically and starts after a time unless manually started.
The model is bi-directional with bolt-on drive units and provides great flexibility for movement along its embedded magnetic strip guidepath and can travel in both directions and when necessary, travel laterally or even rotate in place. This is useful for space restrictive areas and to ensure repeatable alignment to consistently load transfers. The dual drive wheels also give this AGV higher load capacity and features a manual engage/disengage to raise/lower drive wheels. When the drive wheels are raised, AGV can be repositioned by an associate. The AGV reads floor installed RFID tags for direction and functional control. Each end of an AGV independently follows the guidepath.
This high level of control reduces the amount of space the AGV requires when routing especially in turns or space restrictive areas. It can travel at speeds up to 50m/min. and has an estimated towing capacity of 2,222 lb. (1,000kg).
The Creform AGV provides for a 50-course programming. The units are PLC-controlled with HMI touchscreen and include I/O monitoring, course programming, error messages and error log. Onboard radio equipment to maintain contact with traffic control system.
The unit incorporates a 24V system, powered by two 12V AGM batteries. The opportunity charging system, activated by photocells, minimizes need for the user to manually change batteries. There is an optical communication between AGV and battery charging station. When the vehicle pulls into charging position, it signals its presence, lowers the charging probe to contact the conductor plates embedded in the floor and then turns on the charger for a quick battery boost.
The batteries are automatically charged each time the AGV pulls into the transfer station along the route. No human intervention is necessary.
Safety category 3 features on the AGV includes a safety circuit to cut power, audible warning device, flashing light, E-stops, LED light band along both sides of the AGV and a laser scanner with 16 settable zones.
Creform System is used to create an array of material handling and efficiency enhancing devices and is a proven component in continuous improvement and lean manufacturing programs. The company partners with customers in developing and implementing these programs.