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Belt conveyors: Types, advantages, features and tasks in warehouse logistics

Belt conveyors: Types, advantages, features and tasks in warehouse logistics - 8 -

The belt conveyor is an indispensable tool for the smooth transport of goods in the warehouse and an effective tool for automating warehouse processes.

This type of conveyor has a conveyor belt in the form of a belt that moves along the line and transports goods from one place to another.

The belt conveyor compared to other conveyors

Among the different types of conveyors, the belt conveyor stands out for its versatility and efficiency. This conveyor can be used to transport goods of different sizes and weights, making it ideal for warehouse processes.

Roller conveyors are also a popular conveyor, especially for heavy and large loads. However, compared to roller conveyors, a belt conveyor has several advantages. For example, it is more flexible in use, especially due to the following features:

  • greater flexibility in terms of dimensions and weight of goods (min/max);
  • ability to transport at a wide angle;
  • possibility of transporting goods without trays and containers;
  • possibility of setting a higher conveying speed than with a roller conveyor.

The economic advantage of using belt conveyors compared to roller conveyors starts at an alternating conveying length of 10 metres.

Belt conveyors: the most frequently used areas

The belt conveyor is one of the most versatile conveyors used in a wide range of warehouse logistics industries. These include: the manufacturing industry, the automotive industry, the food industry, the pharmaceutical industry, courier services and DIY.

The conditions for using a belt conveyor can vary depending on the industry and the requirements for transporting goods. In industry, for example, belt conveyors are used to transport goods in production areas, to transport goods from one workstation to another and to transport goods on picking and shipping lines.

If necessary, it can be made resistant to various climatic conditions – low temperatures, high humidity, dust and dirt. For this purpose, materials that are easy to clean are used in the manufacture of the conveyor. This allows it to be used in the food and pharmaceutical industries, where hygiene and safety requirements are particularly strict.

The belt conveyor in warehouse logistics

The use of a belt conveyor in warehouse logistics optimises the transport and picking of goods in the warehouse. In our warehouse automation projects, the belt conveyor accounts for about 10% of the total conveyor technology.

The most important advantages of using a belt conveyor in warehouse logistics:

Increased warehouse productivity: The use of belt conveyors increases the efficiency of the warehouse and reduces the time and labour required to transport goods. It increases labour efficiency in the warehouse and reduces personnel costs.

Type of packaging for inclined belt conveyor

Handling of different types of boxes and small goods: The belt conveyor is suitable for different types of packaging such as poly bags, plastic trays and corrugated cardboard boxes. In addition, it enables the handling of very small goods that cannot be transported with a roller conveyor.

Efficient use of space: the conveyor can be positioned in any area of the warehouse, depending on the main tasks of the warehouse and the need to optimise certain processes. The latest development of the KAPELOU team, which has been successfully tested, is the new drive station of the belt conveyor. It allows for use in confined spaces, as the drive motor is placed underneath the conveyor. This solution requires significantly less floor space.

Reduced risk of damage to goods: The belt conveyor allows goods to be moved without the need for manual transfer, reducing the risk of damage.

Increased conveyor speed: The belt conveyor can be adjusted to the desired speed of goods movement. This has a positive effect on the speed of delivery to the customer.

Improved working conditions: The belt conveyor can reduce employee workload and improve working conditions by eliminating the risk of employee injury.

Modularity: The configuration of the belt conveyor can be changed according to the needs of the company. This allows a company to respond quickly to market changes and improve warehouse processes according to product demand.

Belt conveyor. Tasks in the warehouse

Goods transport: A belt conveyor transports large quantities of goods – from the goods receiving area to the warehouse, from the warehouse to the packaging and shipping area, etc. If food or medicines have to be stored under special conditions, e.g. under temperature control, these goods can be brought to the right areas of the warehouse with the help of belt conveyors.

The telescopic belt conveyor at the warehouse in the unloading area

Shipping goods from the warehouse, loading into the warehouse: A telescopic conveyor, a type of belt conveyor, can be used to optimise the process of loading goods from the warehouse directly into vehicles for delivery to customers, as well as loading from vehicles into the warehouse.

Product sortation: The belt conveyor can be used for sorting goods in the warehouse. It allows goods to be categorised and delivered to the correct areas of the warehouse. Large warehouses use the belt conveyor to pack goods into batches that can then be sent to customers in separate shipments.

Facilitating inventory and accounting in the warehouse: In conjunction with vision systems and WMS, the belt conveyor takes on the task of classifying goods fully automatically – it directs them to the right place, which makes the above processes much easier.

Order picking: The conveyor can be part of the automation system for picking orders, reducing the time needed to process them.

Which conveyor to choose: Roller conveyor or belt conveyor

The choice between roller conveyor and belt conveyor depends on the area of application as well as the requirements in the warehouse and the tasks.

The roller conveyor is suitable for transporting large and heavy goods such as pallets and crates. The rollers make it possible to reduce the resistance to movement, which facilitates the transport of large goods. Belt conveyors are suitable for transporting light and small goods such as boxes and polybags.

It is also important to consider the financial possibilities of the company. The roller conveyor with a drive zone is usually more expensive than the belt conveyor. In addition, the choice between roller conveyor and belt conveyor can be influenced by the technology used in the warehouse, as well as the size of the goods, the packaging material and the technical characteristics of the conveyor. We therefore recommend that the choice of conveyor is made carefully, taking into account all possible factors.

Elevating and lowering on an inclined belt conveyor

Belt conveyors. How to choose the optimal speed

The speed of the belt conveyor is set in the planning concept according to the throughput requirements of the entire automation system or a specific storage area. As a rule, the speed is set at 0.2 to 0.5 m/s in the employee area where the goods are loaded or unloaded from the conveyor. It reaches 0.7 m/s to 2.0 m/s on the conveyors for transporting boxes. If necessary, the speed can be reduced to 0.1 m/s.

Determining the optimum speed for a belt conveyor depends on several factors:

Distance between the products to be conveyed: A gap belt conveyor or gapper can be used to ensure the distance between the boxes and gradually increase the speed by 20%. The distance to be covered on the conveyor can also influence the choice of speed. For short distances, the speed is usually higher than for long distances.

Safety: The speed of the conveyor must be safe for the workers to avoid the risk of injury.

Need for product integrity: In some industries, the goods can be very delicate. In such cases, the conveyor speed should be slower to avoid damage to the goods.

Production volume: Larger volumes of goods require higher conveyor speeds.

Use of additional systems: The speed of the conveyor also depends on additional systems used. If goods are weighed on the conveyor or if goods are scanned on the conveyor, the speed will normally be reduced to 1.0 m/s.

Selecting the optimum conveyor speed requires careful analysis of the above factors and selection of the optimum value for efficient and safe operation of the conveyor. It is important to consider the performance requirements, which may vary depending on the industry and the specifics of the production process.

KAPELOU belt conveyor. Technical data

  • Capacity – up to 3,600 containers/hour
  • Payload – up to 50 kg
  • Belt width – 450, 650, 800, 1,000 mm
  • Conveyor speed – 0.1-2 m/s
  • Belt type – double-layer Habasit belt
  • Belt length – 1,600-15,000 mm
  • Drive power – 0.3-3 kW
  • Angle of conveyor incline – 0-16 degrees.

Belt conveyor for the warehouse. Essential characteristics

Type of belts for warehouse conveyors and miscellaneous applications

The belt is one of the most important components of a belt conveyor. It keeps the entire process running smoothly by moving goods in a continuous flow from one part of the warehouse to another without interrupting loading and unloading. A modern belt conveyor is capable of transporting large quantities of goods, including heavy and difficult-to-transport goods. The efficiency of the entire system depends on the choice of belt for the application.

A belt can be made of different materials – rubber, plastic, metal or fabric. Depending on the needs of the warehouse, the belt can also have different widths, thicknesses and lengths. For the production of our belts, we use a belt from the Swiss company Habasit, the world market leader among conveyor belt manufacturers. These belts have widths of 450 mm, 650 mm, 800 mm and 1,000 mm. The most important feature is reliability and strength, because it must be able to withstand the heavy weight of the goods.

For horizontal conveying, the belt is characterised by increased strength in the transverse direction – it bends slightly in the running direction and not in the transverse direction. This results in greater stability under lateral loads. With inclined loads, the belt has a higher coefficient of friction on the effective surface. The belt is selected according to the principle of better adhesion of the material being conveyed. The belt is secured against tipping by end rollers.

Other key features of the belt conveyor

Design of a belt conveyor for warehouse

The KAPELOU belt conveyor is equipped with an intermediate piece, a rigid galvanised steel structure, end rollers, upper curve, lower curve, drive station and calipers. It allows quick installation and replacement of each element. The material from which the conveyor is made is characterised by high corrosion resistance and mechanical strength.

The inclined belt conveyor is equipped with an upper and lower deflection unit with adjustable rollers for a smooth transition between the inclined and horizontal sections of the conveyor. A smooth transition is necessary to reduce noise when transporting goods on the belt and to extend the life of the conveyor.

Placing the main drive elements in the drive station, which is equipped with a tensioning device, facilitates installation, maintenance and servicing of the conveyor. To adjust the height for each type of conveyor, stands are used on which the conveyor is mounted.

Depending on the requirements of a particular project, the belt conveyor can be equipped with a motor with an electric brake to prevent it from spinning in the event of a power failure.

The belt conveyor in KAPELOU’s projects

Conveyor Belt conveyor for courier depot

Express One: The belt conveyor was the most important automation element in a project for Hungary’s largest courier company, which belongs to the Austrian Post and delivers more than 60,000 parcels every day. The 40-metre-long belt conveyor transports up to 1,000 parcels of different shapes and weights per hour.

The belt conveyor is divided into four parts: The first part is at a standard height of 700 mm above the floor, the second part is a smooth ascent onto the platform, the third part is placed on the platform and the fourth part is a smooth descent from the platform to a height of 700 mm above the floor. This solution enables efficient use of the storage space and provides a clear passage for the storage equipment. The implemented system, the key element of which is the belt conveyor, enables sorting of standard, large and non-typical parcels.

Conveyor line and conveyor belt for goods in the warehouse

Kalynivka Logistics Centre: In order to increase the productivity of one of the most modern warehouse complexes in Ukraine with an area of 72,000 m2, we implemented an extensive automated storage system, in which the belt conveyor played an important role. The belt conveyor transports the totes in the storage area at a 16-degree angle and is shaped like a shaft – allowing workers to move freely between the right and left storage areas. Details of the case at the link.

Watsons: For the largest international retail chain of health and beauty products in Ukraine, we equipped the picking area with more than 420 metres of belt and roller conveyors from our own production. They enable the safe transport of 13,000 items – cosmetics, perfumes, hygiene products, household goods and pharmaceuticals.


In KAPELOU projects, the belt conveyor is part of the automation concept in almost every project. For example, when goods need to be transported at an angle or in the area of high-speed barcode scanning or to reduce manual labour. The belt conveyor can reduce the time for goods transport in the warehouse and the workload of the employees by 40 %. Our experts will be happy to advise you and help you implement an effective solution based on belt conveyors of any kind – exactly what your warehouse needs.

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