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The Future of Material Handling: Innovations in Elevator Bucket Design

Material handling is constantly evolving to meet the growing demands for efficiency and increased capacities. Elevator bucket design, a crucial component in this sphere, has seen remarkable advancements in recent years, paving the way for a more efficient and productive future. In this blog post, we’ll be exploring the transformative innovations in elevator bucket design, focusing on the integration of cutting-edge materials and technologies to achieve higher capacities and optimal efficiency.

The pursuit of increased capacities: a driving force for innovation

The growing demand for increased capacities in material handling has been a significant driving force behind the innovation in elevator bucket design. For instance, agricultural industries are under constant pressure to produce more to meet the needs of a growing global population. Increased material handling capacities directly translate to higher productivity. Farmers and agricultural workers are having to handle larger volumes of products more efficiently, so as to enable them to plant, harvest, and transport more crops in less time.

Thankfully, innovations in the design of elevator buckets are meeting this demand for increased capacities.These advancements allow for seamless transportation of bulk materials at larger scale, ensuring a smoother and more productive operation. Additionally, the integration of computer-aided design (CAD) technologies has played a crucial role in optimizing bucket shapes and sizes, further maximizing their capacity. This results in a significant boost to overall output and ensures a steady and ample supply of food and raw materials.

Here are a few of the structural elements that are setting today’s elevator buckets ahead of prior iterations in terms of capacity and durability.

  • Compound curve geometry for efficient discharge
    Elevator bucket design now incorporates streamlined geometry, ensuring a smooth interior front face with a compound curve. This design innovation is a game-changer, enabling materials to flow seamlessly through the bucket. The reduction in friction enhances material flow and reduces the risk of damage during transportation. Each curve and contour is meticulously calculated to ensure even material distribution, ultimately maximizing the bucket’s efficiency.
  • The lightweight revolution – plastics as a foundational material
    One of the most groundbreaking developments in elevator bucket design is the integration of plastics (often using engineered resins) as a foundational material. Plastic has emerged as a cornerstone in crafting elevator buckets that redefine the industry’s landscape.

    Plastic elevator buckets, while being incredibly durable, are significantly lighter than their traditional counterparts. This reduction in weight is monumental, as it allows for capacity to remain the same with reduced power needs. As a result, more material can be transported efficiently, leading to enhanced productivity and cost-effectiveness.
  • Durability: The core tenant of elevator bucket design
    In the pursuit of efficiency, durability must never be sacrificed. Plastic elevator buckets embody this principle flawlessly. Modern plastics, engineered to withstand harsh conditions and wear and tear, are making elevator systems more resilient than ever. These buckets boast exceptional resistance to abrasion, corrosion, and impact, ensuring a prolonged life cycle even under the most demanding material handling operations.

    Moreover, plastic elevator buckets remain unfazed by the elements, making them ideal for outdoor applications. The weather-resistant properties of plastics contribute to the longevity of the buckets, further establishing their position as the future of elevator bucket design.
  • Safety one of the single biggest reasons to opt for plastic elevator buckets
    Plastic elevator buckets are safer to use than steel buckets because they do not pose the risk of sparking and causing subsequent explosions in environments where flammable materials or gasses are present. Steel buckets, due to their metallic composition, can generate sparks when they come into contact with other metal surfaces or materials, potentially igniting combustible atmospheres. In contrast, plastic buckets are non-conductive and do not produce sparks, making them a safer choice for industrial applications where explosion hazards are a concern.

TigerTuff: The Duraplas difference 

At Duraplas, we believe that good design is a marriage of art and science, where form and function harmonize to create a solution that makes life easier for the greatest number of users possible. Our new TigerTuff CC 12″ projection bucket epitomizes this belief with its maximum duty design. It has the thickest lip, back wall and corners to maximize bucket life and maintain capacity, and is up to 80% less weighty than traditional steel buckets. Capacity-wise, it boasts up to 41% more elevator capacity than standard elevator buckets.

Embracing the plastic revolution

Increased capacities in elevator buckets have a cascading effect across industries and benefit a multitude of users along the supply chain. As industries continue to grow and evolve, we can expect further innovations in elevator bucket design, pushing the boundaries of what is possible in terms of capacity and efficiency in vertical conveyor systems. Elevator buckets are no longer just containers; they are a cornerstone of modern industry, and their evolution continues to shape the way we transport and handle bulk materials.

Our motivation at Duraplas is to make processes easier for people. We’re proud to be a crucial part of the material handling process across many industries. We hope you’ll check out our unique line of elevator buckets and get in touch to discuss how innovative design can transform material handling in your organization today.