Miniature Shock Absorbers for Maximum Speeds in New Sorting System

Sorting more packages at higher speeds, a new Split Tray Sorter makes this possible with the help of miniature shock absorbers. The Dutch company Equinox MHE offers sorting solutions for the logistics industry. Clients, among them leadings postal services, use a wide range of high-quality solutions such as sorting systems, end-of-line packaging and warehouse management systems to help their clients distribute goods worldwide. In addition to classic indicators such as postal code or shipping route, the ability to sort by order is an important factor for e-commerce companies.

Equinox sorters often use trays to transport products such as envelopes and parcels within the system. When one of these products is entered in a tray, it is identified by scanning the barcode. Once the tray has reached the right destination, it will be opened and the product sorted at the right station. Subsequently, products can be directly packed or shipped. Thanks to their oval shape, so called split tray sorters have stations on both sides, thus doubling their capacity.

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With miniature shock absorbers, even tight bends are no problem

For a particularly space-saving design, Equinox MHE has now additionally reduced the curve radii for their even more compact split tray sorters. As a result, the transport containers move very close to each other in the curves, close enough that vibrations may occur.

In the worst case, this could lead to valuable cargo falling from the sorting plant. To avoid damages or downtime, Equinox turned to ACE, a well-known partner for high quality damping solutions in its in-house design department. Han Titulaer, technical advisor to ACE Stoßdämpfer GmbH in the Netherlands and Belgium, recommended the installation of MC150EUM-PP150 miniature shock absorbers.

The secret is a hermetically sealed rolling diaphragm in each absorber. This unique ACE damping technology ensures complete separation of the damping fluid from the surrounding air. It also makes direct installation in a pressure chamber possible to provide end stop damping in pneumatic cylinders up to approximately 7 bar or 100 psi. The rolling diaphragm delivers very low return forces for these maintenance-free, ready-to-install absorbers.

Miniature shock absorbers from MC types product family are universally applicable as stainless steel options are also available for greater environmental compatibility. In addition to the logistics industry and packaging equipment, they are also used for automation or in material handling equipment, medium robotics and as dampers within machine tools.

With a stroke of 150 mm, these self-compensating and maintenance-free modern components have an energy consumption of 20 Nm per stroke or 34,000 Nm per hour. Thanks to a lifetime of up to 25 million cycles, they are also suitable for the continuous operation of modern sorting systems. Under simple conditions, this already equals four times the life of conventional shock absorbers. In addition to the wide range of miniature shock absorbers, ACE also provides engineers with larger, more powerful models. These include industrial shock absorbers and heavy industrial shock absorbers. These most powerful hydraulic machine elements are capable of effectively absorbing up to 126,500 Nm per stroke.

Christmas is approaching. And with the number of online shops, the volume of parcels and packages is increasing. The task of sorting plants is to cope with such quantities and above all at peak times. To do this, the sorters must move at high speeds without losing parcels. A new, high-end system does just this with the help of ACE miniature shock absorbers.

The calm before the storm: It's not just at Christmas time that thousands of parcels and packages are launched every day from sorting facilities like these.

For a more compact footprint at logistics facilities, Equinox MHE has reduced the curve radii and uses ACE miniature shock absorbers to maintain high speed also in now tighter corners.

For continuous operation, the self-adjusting, maintenance-free members of the family MC150 to MC600 have proven to be the ideal miniature shock absorbers after tests.

In addition to reliably braking fast movements in curves, thanks to ACE's unique rolling diaphragm technology, the components are characterized by a maximum service life of up to 25 million cycles.


Authorized by Robert Timmerberg /plus2 GmbH, M. A., Journalist (DFJV) for ACE Stoßdämpfer GmbH/

October, 2019