Residential/Commercial Appliance Material Handling

Midwest Engineered Systems completed an Upscale Residential Commercial Application Material Handling and Test In Motion Production System.

The Challenge


To design a complete material handling and control system solution that would accommodate the entire production flow and take each product through the rigorous testing process.

  • Design a test system to handle the production rate of one unit every 82 seconds.

  • Minimize the amount of accumulation needed for these tests by utilizing overhead mobile electrification loops to test the refrigerators in motion.

  • Design a wireless production test system for over 300 units testing simultaneously

  • Design a custom data collection server solution to record all test data via wireless communication

  • Incorporate RFID tags into the material handling control solution to track data to specific product serial numbers and product locations in the system.

  • Design a distributed control system to handle over 1200 conveyor zone sections and 8000 points of discrete I/O

  • Minimize noise from over three hundred pallet locations by using chain driven powered roller conveyors.

  • Implement a distributed SCADA system for full process monitoring and control.

The Solution


  • Implemented Testing in motion through the use of mobile electrification which greatly reduced the number of accumulation conveyors required to complete the extensive testing process.

  • Developed a wireless data collection node and server using embedded processor technology

  • Used wireless Zigbee technology to provide the ability to simultaneously test over 300 units.

  • Implemented a distributed I/O architecture (ASI Bus) to effectively and efficiently control over 1200 conveyor zones

  • Incorporated RFID technology to positively track and record production and test data

  • Using powered chain driven live roller conveyors reduced the cost of spare parts and provided zone length flexibility for future product design.

  • Chain transfers provided a means to automatically convey refrigerators to each workstation.

  • Three high speed transfer cars eliminated the need for twenty-four chain transfers and provided a significant savings.


Impact to the Customer

  • Streamlined the entire testing and production process.

  • Provided the ability to test over 300 units simultaneously while in motion.

  • Reliably tracked and recorded all production and test data by unique product serial number using RFID technology

  • Products flow through the system with minimal operator intervention.

  • System expansion is built into the design for future growth.

For more information on this equipment or other web handling needs please contact MWES.


Midwest Engineered Systems

W238N1800 Rockwood Drive
Waukesha, WI 53188
Call: 414-327-0000

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