Material handling in industrial automation refers to the movement, storage, control and protection of materials, goods and products throughout the manufacturing and distribution process. This can include a wide range of activities, such as transporting raw materials from a supplier to a production facility, moving finished goods from a production line to a storage area, and loading products onto trucks or ships for distribution to customers.
Material handling is an essential part of industrial automation, as it allows companies to efficiently and effectively manage their operations, improve productivity, and reduce the risk of damage to materials and products.
There are many different applications for material handling in industrial automation. Some common examples include:
- Moving raw materials from a storage area to a production line
- Transporting finished goods from a production line to a storage area or warehouse
- Loading and unloading products onto trucks, ships, or other vehicles for distribution to customers
- Sorting and organizing materials, goods, and products in a warehouse or distribution center
- Controlling the flow of materials and products throughout a manufacturing facility Protecting materials, goods, and products from damage during handling and storage
Material handling systems can be customized to suit the specific needs of a particular industrial application. For example, a material handling system in a food production facility might include conveyor belts, automated sorting and packaging equipment, and temperature-controlled storage areas to ensure the safety and quality of the products. In a automotive manufacturing plant, a material handling system might include robot arms, automated guided vehicles, and specialized lifting equipment to move and manipulate heavy car parts.