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2-MINUTE Heavy-Duty Automatic Guided Vehicle

atl_montage.jpg Moves Steel Plates Both Indoors and Outside
(148 KB)

Features/Benefits Provided:
Quick installation
Flexibility with easy
modification and repositioning
Travels in all directions, and
inside and outside
Eliminates need for embedded
steel rails

A builder of aircraft carriers and submarines The AGV operates automatically according
needed to move extremely large steel plates to programmed instructions from the
from a single plate conveyor to one of seven operator's pulpit. Safety features include a
individual delivery stations. Plate sizes laser scanning system at each end of
generally vary from a minimum of three- vehicle and photo-optics down the length of
sixteenths of an inch to a two-inch thickness, each side. The precision laser guidance
and up to 14 feet in width by 50 feet in system allows the unit to boast a plus or
length. The largest of these plates can weigh minus one-inch positioning stopping
nearly 20 tons. tolerance in operation.

Prior to 2004, the company used a roller After a year and a half in operation, the
conveyor system to carry primed plates from companys project engineer says, "the
the plate prep building to a rail car they called uniqueness of this AGV is that it has both a
a "collocator." The collocator, used powered roller deck on top to roll the plates
embedded steel rails to carry individual off," he says, "plus the ability to straddle a
plates to six different trimming stations. stack of plates along the entire length of its
drop-off route."
As production increased and the need arose
for reduced cost, the company decided to
build an additional station for the line, but it The unique advantages of the
would have to be situated in another facility. heavy-duty AGV were readily
This would entail a 90-degree bend in the apparent: quick installation
collocator path-not feasible unless an compared to a rail system, the
additional, adjacent perpendicular track line capability to be easily modified
was installed. or repositioned, and a less
disruptive test-out period
The rail collocator was 30 years old. Parts
for the rail car were difficult to find and
maintenance costs were escalating causing
the company to consider other material
handling alternatives. After a beta testing
period, the decision was made in 2004 to
upgrade the technology with a new, laser- 34375 W. Twelve Mile Road
guided Automatic Guided Vehicle (AGV). Farmington Hills, MI 48331
The AGV did away with the embedded steel P: 248.553.1220 F: 248.553.1228
Proud Member of the rails in the floor and could travel equally well
AGVS Product Section in both directions, inside and outside the
of the Material facility, and could travel sideways at any
Handling Industry angle and also rotate at its center point.