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Motor Driven Roller Conveyor Systems

Modern material handling challenges call for creative solutions that improve efficiency, accuracy, and safety. These are essential as companies deal with increasingly demanding clients and consumers, as well as rising operational costs.

Motor driven roller (MDR) conveyor systems address these concerns by promoting the swift and seamless movement of many types of materials. These conveyors are often called upon for optimizing small spaces that otherwise make safe and efficient operations challenging to achieve.

MDR conveyors represent the future of material handling systems. Experts anticipate that they will soon replace line shaft conveyors as the dominant solution for complex accumulation and transportation concerns.

Keep in mind that how MDR systems are implemented matters nearly as much as whether they're used in the first place. It's almost impossible to realize their full potential if they are not customized based on the location and industry in question.

Learn more about MDR systems to see if they’re the right solution for you, and reach out to consult our team of experts.

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MDR conveyors feeding boxes through a shipping area

How Motorized Roller Conveyor Systems Work

Solutions incorporating motor-driven rollers can differ from one application to the next. Typically, however, they follow the same general format: motor rollers are mounted within conveyor system frames and powered by 24 volt DC motors. (They are often also referred to as 24VDC powered roller conveyors.)

Motorized roller conveyor systems can handle a variety of items, including everything from individual products to large pallets. In addition to moving these items from point A to point B, they can limit accumulation or buffering to keep systems running smoothly. Belts can be integrated with rollers as needed to accommodate inclines.

Types of Motorized Roller Conveyors

MDR conveyors can take several forms. They should be selected strategically based on the needs of the environment in which they’re used. The following are among the most common forms:

MDR Pallet Conveyors

As mentioned previously, MDR conveyors can be called on to transport sizable pallets. Often, conveyors are designed specifically for this application. These systems can be built to address the safety concerns associated with transporting heavy loads.

Run-on-demand solutions improve energy efficiency by only operating conveyors when they are needed. Meanwhile, 24-volt motors can cut noise by multiple decibels — a huge benefit given the significant noise that often accompanies pallet handling.

MDR pallet conveyor

MDR Accumulation Conveyors

Capable of temporarily stopping the flow of materials, zero-pressure accumulation conveyors are ideal for sensitive materials that might otherwise be damaged by conveyor systems involving significant buffering. Strategically controlled zones are capable of detecting where build-up might occur before shutting off when necessary. This, in turn, saves energy and protects otherwise vulnerable materials.

MDR accumulation conveyor with boxes on top

MDR Transportation Conveyors

While material accumulation is a huge concern for some applications, other industries are able to keep material handling operations running smoothly without worrying about buffering. In such situations, MDR transportation conveyors are preferable. These systems move at high speeds, with stoppages kept to a minimum to achieve peak efficiency.

MDR transportation conveyor

Benefits of MDR Conveyors

Depending on how they're used, MDR conveyors can provide a variety of important advantages. Most of these relate in some way to cost, although safety and noise output should also be considered. The benefits of these systems include:

Energy Efficiency

Motorized drive roller conveyors are among the most efficient material handling solutions currently available. Systems with run-on-demand functionality, in particular, produce huge energy savings because they cease motion as soon as they are not required. This prevents waste that might otherwise occur when running rollers with no materials on them.

Increased Safety

A variety of factors make MDR conveyors safer than alternatives such as line shaft systems. Chief among these: the reduced need for manual labor. Additionally, lower voltage and torque among individual rollers decrease the potential for injuries.

Low Noise

Noise reduction is a chief advantage of MDR rollers. Conventional systems rely on loud chains and sprockets. They also feature larger motors that run continually, meaning that the noise remains constant even when items aren't actively being transported. With MDR, smaller 24 VDC motors dramatically cut noise output, with run-on-demand solutions bypassing noise completely when material transport is not required.

Less Maintenance

MDR systems that only run on demand often prompt surprisingly low maintenance costs, as their reduced usage limits wear and tear. Interchangeable motors make any maintenance needs that do eventually arise easier to handle — and more affordable, as obtaining spare parts can otherwise prove difficult.

Saving Space

Many traditional conveyor systems rely on significant slopes or manual processes to keep materials moving. These features often occupy a great deal of space. Many MDR conveyors, however, are able to operate without these implements. As such, they can be integrated within a variety of small spaces. Additional flexibility is made possible by systems of modules, which can be arranged according to the unique parameters of any given space.

Together, these advantages make it possible to free up room for other equipment while allowing material handling operations to occupy less total space. The result? Significant reductions in operational costs.

Overall Cost Savings

Between smaller spaces, lower maintenance, and reduced labor needs, MDR conveyor systems provide numerous sources of cost savings. These, combined with the increased efficiency these systems enable, can lead to huge returns on investment.

Finding & Integrating the Right Motor Driven Conveyor System

Deciding whether to utilize motor driven rollers for your material handling operation is the easy part. Now you need to determine which type of MDR system will best meet your needs — and that’s where a customized solution from experts comes in.

Look to Warehouse1 for expert advice as you move forward with MDR conveyor implementation or other automation opportunities. We'll help you stay ahead of the curve and make the most of this important investment. Contact us today to learn more.


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