Unlike pneumatic conveying, screw conveying and standard belt conveying, vibrating conveying offers solutions for moving delicate or sticky food materials without causing liquefying or damage due to shearing or rough handling.
Vibrating feeders offer low-maintenance parts and material handling, as vibratory conveyors and bowls use no moving parts except the vibrating drive installed beneath the bowl or feeder pan, away from contaminating materials.
There are two main types of vibrating feeders: vibrating bowl feeders and vibrating conveyors. Vibrating bowl feeders are used extensively by small parts manufacturers as an extremely efficient means of orienting products for further finishing or for distribution. Originally designed by pharmaceutical companies to count, sort and organize pills, bowl feeders also orient fasteners, ammunition, o-rings, molded rubber parts, toothpaste caps and many other small parts for packaging or finishing.
Vibrating conveyors, on the other hand, are used for powder and bulk material handling in a range of industries, including pharmaceutical, agricultural and food processing. Additionally, recycling industries use vibratory conveyors extensively to convey and sort materials such as plastic, wood, crushed cement and metals for reclamation. Overall, vibrating feeders provide an ergonomic solution to monotonous and physically strenuous sorting tasks.
Vibrating bowl feeders are a type of parts feeder used in parts manufacturing to align finished or semi-finished parts for final processing or packaging. Vibrating bowl feeders are metal, silicone or plastic bowls equipped with a vibrating drive beneath the bowl, where the bowl is mounted to the base. A ramped ridge runs up along the edge of the bowl in a spiral, leading to the outfeed area.
Bowl feeders vibrate in a circular motion, driving parts up the ridge, which is usually designed for a specific part; it narrows as it reaches the outfeed, forcing parts to form a single-file uniform line.
Vibrating conveyors encompass a wider range of troughs, vibrating screens and trommel screens which convey and/or sort bulk materials during processing. Vibrating conveyors are metal troughs which vibrate in one direction, conveying powder bulk solids or heterogenous mixtures from one process to another.
Some vibrating conveyors have ultra-low vibrations designed specifically for solids which are delicate, sticky or may liquefy, such as gummy bears or lettuce. Trommels, or trommel screens are vibrating screens which help sort small particles from large particles.
Rotary trommels, a large tumbler design, aid in gravel processing and recycling; trommel magnets are often used in conjunction with metal recycling rotary trommels to help sort ferrous materials from non-ferrous materials. Continuous flatbed trommels may have screens or filtering devices which sort particles of different sizes as large particles are conveyed to containment or further processing.