Multiplex Contact 4.0 by Anzani, a conveyor that makes the most of Industry 4.0

Footwear assembly and finishing system with trolley stop stations, production tracking software and self-regulation of heat treatments.

The new multi-level conveyor implemented by Anzani, derived and adapted for a shoe assembly and finishing line from the already tested system developed for the optimised management of a sewing line, sets 3 main objectives: optimal mixed production management, downtime elimination, complete production tracking. The MULTIPLEX CONTACT 4.0 is a motorised chain conveyor, equipped with trolley stop stations, to which it is possible to combine a heat treatment tunnel on each floor (humidification, ironing, glue drying, cold setting). A system that takes full advantage of the possibilities of Industry 4.0 thanks to a management software that allows you to set the standard time of each operation, and then detect the actual production times, as well as set the parameters of the conveyor and the machines connected to it. HOW IT WORKS At the loading point of the conveyor, an operator selects the item to be placed on each trolley on the computer. In this way, the software will assign the standard times to each operation and set the parameters of the heat treatment machines, associated with the single trolley, thus allowing the self-regulation of the machines and the automatic setting of the standard times in the individual stations. Once automatically reached the first station, the trolley is put on hold thanks to a stop station. The arriving trolleys stop in accumulation, thanks to a chain release system, mounted on the trolley itself. With a slight push, the operator moves the trolley from the stop station to the processing station, allowing the software to identify which trolley it is and recording the production time of the single operation, which is stopped, once the the operator finishes the job and gives a slight push to the trolley, which re-engages the transport chain, to move on to the next phase.

ADVANTAGES MULTIPLEX CONTACT 4.0 is suitable for shoe factories that are dealing with a mixed production, i.e. small quantities for many different models. In these cases, multiple items are produced at the same time while the use of multiple floors is recommended, grouping items with similar processing on each level. This way it is possibile to obtain maximum efficiency, since rapid machining will not be constrained to more complex processing. Thanks to the stop stations, operators will be able to work on multiple floors, if they carry out quick operations, while, in the case of more complex works, an operator will be assigned for each floor. Furthermore, it meets the demands of those who need an effective control of the production phases, providing complete, automatic production tracking. Finally, the self-regulation of heat treatments based on the item on the trolley ensures a targeted and differentiated treatment based on the type of shoe, thus providing quality assurance. The self-regulation of heat treatments allows also to optimise energy consumption and reduce the environmental impact of the line.