Glossary


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1) Manipulator

A stationary (does not mean that nothing moves) movement assist device that is often equipped with end effectors for handling different types of loads. End effectors include all forms of grippers, forks, barrel grabs, etc. Manipulators counteract the weight of the load, rendering it almost weightless by way of hydraulic or pneumatic cylinders, or simply by way of counter weights and the exercising of very limited manual control. Most manipulators require manual actuation and control and are therefore manual assist devices. They are mounted to the floor, wall or ceiling. In some cases, manipulators are mounted to a fixed base plate and the entire unit can be moved via a trolley, cart or frok lift truck.

2) End effector

An attachment, such as grippers, spraying nozzles, welding tooling, and measuring devices, connected to the mechanical portion of a manipulator, balancers, positioner, or robot.  Generally designed to fit a certain need and or lifting situation but is not restricted to single task.

3) Vacuum lifter

A lifting device utilizing the creation of vacuum to attach itself to an object via the use of an electric-powered extraction pump and sealed pads. Generally suspended from a hoist/crane, manipulator, balancer, or positioner.  Often attaches to the lifting mechanism by means of a bail and hook arrangement or is an integral part of the positioning and lifting mechanism.

4) Clamp

A below-the-hook attaching device which, using a jaw-like scissor gripping action, clamps or locks onto a piece of material. This device is attached to the hook of a hoist or the end effector of a manipulator and usually is used to pick up sheets of material such as wood or metal.

5) Fixed Aisle Storage & Retrieval

Fixed Aisle (F/A) Storage & Retrieval Systems consist of one or more long, narrow aisles framed on both sides by a steel (and sometime extruded aluminum) storage rack structure into and from which loads are automatically stored and retrieved under computer control. The storage/retrieval function in each aisle can be performed a variety of ways.  However, the most  common was is by a machine that consists of a floor running, traveling structural frame or vertical mast that guides and supports a hoisting carriage on which loads are carried. One or more shuttles or insertion/extraction devices on the hosted carriage manipulates loads into and out of adjacent or opposing storage rack positions. All three machine motions; horizontal (down aisle), vertical and shuttle action are independently and automatically controlled. See also Carousels , Unit Load AS/RS , Mini-Load AS/RS and/or Micro Load AS/RS .