Material handling equipment consists of all the devices and machinery that is used to move goods throughout the factory and from the factory to the final consumer. It is important to have this equipment in the industry as they may increases productivity as well as the profit margin. Another advantage is that they are fast and efficient. Material handling equipments are divided into five types depending on the role they play in the production process.
Let us start with transportation material handling equipment . In most cases it is used to move materials from one location to another within the factory. For instance, we say moving materials from the store to the loading area. The moving of materials can be done using both the internal machinery and external machinery. The internal machinery involves the movement from the assembly to packing area. In short it is just the movements between the productions areas. Some of the examples of internal machinery are; conveyor belt, forklift truck and others. Another type of machinery is the external machinery which consist of shipping containers or large commercial trucks which are used in moving goods to retail outlets.
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We also have position material handling equipment. Majorly this equipment is used in reposition of products and materials. These machines will arrange the materials to fit in the equipments found in the assembly area. They can be in form of feeders or robots. Some of these equipments include the hoists or lifts which are primarily used to store materials on warehouse.
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Storage and retrieval material handling equipment is also another type of material handling equipment. This category includes the shelves and racks that are used to put goods after the production process. Here we have the shelving systems, cabinets and bins for smaller goods. In addition to that we also have drums and silos for storing liquid substances. Note that, products that are stored on the floor or directly on pellets do not fall under storage handling equipment.
Load formation and handling material equipment is another type. This is used in packing goods making them ready for shipment using packing machinery. This includes skids and pellets, crates and boxes and bulk handling containers. We also have shirks that are used in wrapping plastic tightly around the pallet of goods. Here we use bulk handling containers are used for storing liquids.
We also have identification control material handling equipment. This type of material handling consists of systems that are used to track the goods as they move through manufacturing and distribution process. They include the bar codes or tags, portable magnetic strip and inventory control software programs.