The automated load trains Factory Train FT600 and FT900 are especially made for automated logistic processes. The automation levels range from partially automated processes to full automation – both during driving and loading/unloading. Extremely high tracking accuracy during driving and high positioning accuracy during the loading process enable efficient and safe automation.
The driving processes of the FT600/FT900 Factory Train load train can be partially or fully automated. For example, the load train can be driven manually by an operator as usual. When approaching and positioning at an automated transfer station, where high positioning accuracy is important, the load train takes over the steering tasks and thus guarantees a perfect parking position for a safe automated transfer of the load carriers.
Using the fully automated driving option, all driving tasks as well as, of course, the positioning for the transfer processes are fully automated, a driver/operator is no longer necessary. All driving functions are fully taken over by the load train. Geo navigation / contour navigation technology is used for navigation. Depending on the location and requirements, another type of navigation can also be used or different types of navigation can be combined within the AGV (hybrid navigation).
Different load carrier systems are available for the automated loading process: Amongst others, load carriers with conveyor structures (e.g. roller conveyors, accumulation conveyor chain, etc.) for automated transfer to/from roller conveyors. As well as load carriers with automatically extendable telescopic forks for picking up secured/braked pushable load carriers standing on the floor, such as trolleys/roll racks or pallets (lengthways and widthways).
Using the load carrier with automatically extendable telescopic forks, secured/braked pushable load carriers standing on the floor, such as trolleys/roller racks as well as pallets (lengthways and widthways) can be picked up and delivered automatically.
With the conveyor belt load carrier, the load carriers can be picked up directly from powered (roller) conveyors or discharged onto the powered (roller) conveyor. The pick-up and delivery heights can be approached automatically by the lifting gear integrated in the load carrier.
With the FT600 and FT900 automated Factory Train load train, not only is the tractor environment secured in the direction of travel, but the entire train is permanently and fully monitored by a personal protection system (PPS). From the tractor to the last trailer, the load train is covered with a "protective field", so to speak. Several safety scanners secure the load train, both the direction of travel and the lateral areas are permanently monitored. The safety scanners are integrated in the tractor and also in each individual load carrier. The safety scanners scan the surroundings and generate a warning and protective field around the FT600/FT900 load train.
When driving straight ahead, everything seems fairly straightforward. But how does the monitoring function work when cornering, when the safety scanners run the risk of identifying the train itself as an "obstacle"? Once again, the Neumaier Factory Train load train offers a solution. Thanks to innovative technology and the network of the entire train formation to work as one vehicle, the load train recognises the bend radius and reacts accordingly.
The protective field and warning area created around the automated load train adapts to the driving speed. If the load train detects an obstacle (e.g. a person) in its warning field, the train reduces its speed continuously down to 0 km/h (if necessary). During speed reduction, the warning/protection field sizes are adjusted according to the driving speed.
What was previously not possible is now possible with the new Factory Train FT600 and FT900 load train. Because the FT600/FT900 can also run automatically in outdoor areas. Until now, automated outdoor travel has always failed due to scanner technology. But with the new safety laser scanner from SICK AG this is now possible. The SICK outdoorScan3 has been specially developed for outdoor use and works flawlessly even under weather conditions such as sun, rain, snow and fog, thus ensuring a stable and above all safe and reliable process.
Like the manually operated Factory Train load trains, the automated Factory Train FT600/FT900 also features automatic speed reduction when cornering. In this case, the entire train formation is decelerated during cornering. The speed remains throttled until the entire train has exited the bend and is driving straight ahead. This feature, which comes as standard with all models in the Factory Train series, eliminates the whiplash effect.
Another advantage of the automated Factory Train FT600/FT900 is an electronic single-wheel brake system with ABS and emergency brake function, which can be installed on all steering axles in the train. In automation, shorter braking distances mean higher driving speeds since the train stops at a shorter distance. In addition, the load train brakes evenly and comes to a gradual and safe stop in an extended state thanks to the use of the electronic single-wheel brake system. This prevents dangerous sliding of the load carriers and ensures that the entire train formation always stays in its track.