Keeping the production line moving is essential to maintain throughput and reduce waste in a high-speed production line. The line is made up of interconnected machines for processing and packaging. If production is stalled because of a piece of malfunctioning equipment, this affects the entire line as products could be lost or damaged, and more labor and power are needed to restart the cycle. Accumulation systems act as a buffer to ensure production can continue even if there is an issue with the packaging machines. Sometimes, it could be as simple as the production machines running faster than the packaging machines or a change in the size of the products. The goal of an accumulation system is to manage product flow and prevent more extensive scale shutdowns that can significantly impact production and efficiency. Accumulators can be adjusted to maintain speed and spacing to mitigate jams and collisions, depending on the application. But as you’ll learn as you read on, choosing an accumulation system is not as easy as picking up one from the store or ordering one online. It requires significant assessment and precision to identify the best accumulators for your line, so it’s always best to work with accumulation experts.
How do you determine the best accumulation system for your facility?Accumulators come in all shapes and sizes and utilize various technologies based on the application and amount of space available. Accumulators also vary in price. Because of the myriad of factors and options present, you need to have a significant amount of information available to you to make the best decision on which accumulation systems are necessary for your line.
What are some factors that will determine the suitable accumulators for you?
- The type of product and its shape and size
- The types of machines on the line, their operations and capabilities, and what line controls are in place
- Packaging requirements
- Production and packaging rates
- Repair times of all machines on the line
- Electrical and mechanical specifications
- Size of the plant and available floor space