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With the launch of our new web site, we’ve added a blog. Here we’ll keep you updated on the latest news and trends for safety in the material handling industry. That may cover many topics, from the latest forecasts for manufacturing and material handling, updates in regulations and standards from OSHA and ANSI, as well as some of our safety gate installations and custom work.

On the blog you’ll also find updates from some of the organizations we belong to, like MHEDA and MHI, as well as MHI’s ProGMA Committee.

We’re looking forward to sharing our news and views with you, and if there is a topic you would like us to touch on, just let us know.

AGVs and the Roly Safety Gate: A Case Study

In one instance, we worked with a customer with a large, multi-level distribution center to equip our Roly® safety gates with the proper technology to interact with their AGVs that were loading and unloading material to pallet drop areas on upper levels. The Roly safety gate model uses dual, counterbalanced gates to maintain a safe environment at all times. The customer sent us the sensors that they wanted to use, and we designed the way our Roly safety systems would detect and interact with the sensors used in the facility.

We equipped the gates with the sensors to allow the AGV to determine if the ledge gate of the Roly safety gate was open or closed. In addition, we mounted photo eyes to the rear post of the gate in order to detect workers that were loading and unloading the pallet loads that the AGVs were providing. Photo eyes worked with the sensors to ensure the ledge-side gate was in place when it detected workers on the platform, providing safety for the workers on the upper levels.

We also installed power operation to each Roly unit and integrated the sensors so that when the ledge gate is up, sensors send information to the AGV, telling it that material can be loaded into the pallet drop area. Once the pallets are loaded into the work area, the sensors send a signal to close the ledge-side of the Roly gate and the workers can then work with the material that was loaded into the area.

As AGVs, robots and other unmanned vehicles continue to be integrated into operations in material handling, we’ll see more need for this kind of wireless control for any device in the facility to make operations more efficient. We can include all kinds of wireless controls to our safety gates in order for machines and employees to operate them - regardless of the gate model, depth, width or height.

Do you have an application that needs safety with added technology? Does your facility have existing safety gates that need to be retrofitted with technology to work with AGVs? Let us know - we can help!