Monday, November 12, 2012

The Sidewinder Dynamic Laner

The Sidewinder Dynamic Laner automatically divides a single file lane of containers into multiple lanes without interrupting product flow. Arrowhead Conveyor has eliminated the need to stop product during lane shifts using a unique coiled rail system that provides superior product stability at high speeds.

The Sidewinder is designed for high speed applications. The base unit can handle a continuous flow of product without interruption at line speeds up to 215 feet per minute.

The Sidewinder Provides Superior Container Handling - The unique coiled product guides provide support for both sides of products during lane shifts. This ensures that the product will not topple or drift during the laning process. It also allows the Sidewinder to run difficult containers at the highest possible rates.

The Sidewinder eliminates product flow interruptions caused by clamping and shifting during lane changes.

The Sidewinder is flexible; it can be configured to produce outputs from a single file to multiple lanes up to 22' across. Multiple laning sequences are possible to address individual customer needs. Changeover is fast and effective with no tools required for adjusting the product guides.

The Sidewinder can be provided as a complete unit including product conveyor or it can be provided as a stand-alone unit for retrofit on existing production lines.

The Sidewinder is easy to maintain; incorporating proven, reliable components that are selected for long life and consistent performance.

The continuous, dynamic motion of the Sidewinder eliminates the extra wear and tear caused by conveyor chain slipping under product during clamp and shift lane changes. The servo controls also provide precise motion control that eliminates ongoing adjustments common with other types of actuators.

To learn more about the Sidewinder Dynamic Laner please visit our website

Thursday, November 8, 2012

NeXtgen the Next Generation of Sanitary Conveyors Part 2

In part two of our series on sanitary conveyors we will be talking about what sanitation is and how it relates to the design of the conveyor. Sanitation refers to conditions of the conveyor equipment that are free from particles such as filth or pathogens that could endanger public health. To make sure food remains safe during processing, appropriate sanitation programs along with the construction of the conveyor equipment must adhere to sound sanitary design principles. These principles provide a guideline so sanitary equipment can be designed to be adequately cleaned and sanitized. All surfaces of the conveyor must be able to withstand a corrosive wash down environment due to exposure from chemicals. Equipment that does not adhere to these sanitary design principles cannot be adequately cleaned and sanitized.

The main purpose for cleaning and sanitizing conveyor equipment is the complete removal of food and its byproducts from the food contact and non-food contact zones. The cleaned equipment must be able to fully drain and air dry to prevent bacteria growth. The preferred order for cleaning food contact surfaces are the following:
  • Rinse
  • Clean
  • Rinse
  • Sanitize
Equipment that’s been sanitized refers to the reduction of microorganisms levels considered to be safe for human consumption. In the rinse, clean, rinse, sanitize cycle, water accounts for nearly 95%-99% of the solution used to clean and sanitize. First, water removes food and contamination from the equipment surfaces. Next water is mixed with a detergent to clean the surface of the equipment. This solution is then rinsed from the equipment with water to allow for the final step of sanitization. Sanitization can be generalized into two categories, thermal and chemical. Thermal sanitization involves the use of hot water or steam on equipment surfaces for a specific period of time to kill microorganisms. Chemical sanitization involves the use of chemicals to clean surfaces at a specific period of time.

Sanitary equipment must be able to with stand not only food and its corrosive properties but also the chemicals that are used to clean the equipment. The American Meat Institute’s (AMI) 10 Principles of Sanitary Design provides advanced sanitary design guidelines under a general standard. These principles can be easily adapted to other food related industries as well.

Conveyor equipment that abides by the AMI’s 10 Principles of Sanitary Design must follow a rigid format in designing the conveyor. The construction and materials of the conveyor must have all food contact surfaces smooth, free of cracks and crevices, nonporous, nonabsorbent, non-contaminating, nonreactive, corrosion resistant, cleanable, with all connecting surfaces flush and continuous.

An array of diverse materials are present in the construction of sanitary conveyors. Each conveyor can have different levels of sanitation requirements for food handling purposes. Therefore, sanitary conveyors can be tailored to an individual food product line while still retaining characteristics of a similar conveyor design. Depending on the application needed, a variety of metals and non metals are used in the construction of the conveyors.

NeXtconveyor NeXtgen II Sanitary Conveyor
NeXtconveyor NeXtgen II
Stainless steel is the preferred metal of choice when constructing sanitary conveyor. Stainless steel has the benefits of cost effectiveness, durability and has a high resistance to corrosion. Not all Stainless steel is created equally though. Stainless steel is rated on its alloy properties and how it relates to the composition of chromium and nickel levels. Corrosion resistance differs with the amount of chromium used in the stainless steel. While structural strength of the stainless steel is affected by the amount of nickel present.
Other acceptable metals that can be used for sanitary conveyor equipment are:
  • Titanium
  • Platinum
  • Gold
  • Copper
  • Aluminum
NeXtconveyor NeXtgen Ultra Sanitary Conveyor
NeXtconveyor NeXtgen Ultra
Depending on the level of sanitation required conveyor equipment can be designed as either clean-in-place (CIP) or clean-out-of-place (COP). With a CIP type conveyor system all of its components must be designed to be cleaned without any disassembly, while not allowing any pathogens to integrate back into the food supply chain. The advantage of CIP systems is it allows for faster cleaning and less chemical usage. Clean-out-of-place conveyor systems allow for disassembly of key component parts to be removed from the conveyor and taken to a separate wash down area. The key advantage of COP systems are food product can be easily detected and therefore easily removed.

In food processing facilities there can be many different unique sanitary conveyor requirements dependent on the food being processed to the conditions of the facility. A well designed conveyor that follows the guidelines put forth by government agencies will help reduce the outbreak of food borne illnesses. Along with proper sanitation procedures, plant managers can safely and reliably keep consumers safe.

Arrowhead Systems sanitary line of conveyor, NeXtconveyor, offers three distinct tiers of sanitation classifications dependent on processing need. By establishing these classifications customers can easily determine what type of conveying system they will need and know that it will meet government standards.

Our NeXtgen Sanitary Conveyor is a table top conveyor that features an open-frame design, constructed from 304 Stainless Steel, and is our base sanitary modular conveyor. The NeXtgen II is our mat top sanitary conveyor that also features the patented open-frame design and is fully 304 Stainless Steel constructed. The NeXtgen II is a BISSC Verified conveyor and has been designed to be easily cleaned. The NeXtgen Ultra is our ultimate sanitary conveyor featuring a fully-welded, open frame 304 Stainless Steel construction. The NeXtgen Ultra features tool free assembly and disassembly of its components and parts, and is NSF certified while meeting the sanitary requirements of USDA, AMS, BISSC and 3A-Dairy specifications.

NeXtconveyor NeXtgen Sanitary Conveyor

NeXtconveyor NeXtgen II Sanitary Conveyor
NeXtgen II
NeXtconveyor Ultra Sanitary Conveyor
NeXtgen Ultra

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Congratulations to the Winners Of The A&B Audit Drawing From This Years Pack Expo

Arrowhead Systems would like to thank everyone who signed up to win a free audit from A&B Engineering at Pack Expo. The winners of the free audit drawings are:

  • Mike Kibler, KIK Corporation 
  • Dan Boone, B-Way Corporation 
  • Luis Ramos, Blue Runner Foods 
  • Tim Froeming, Birds Eye Foods 
  • Kieji Shimamoto, Yoshino America Corporation