The Dutch machine manufacturer KOAT Horti Handling Systems based in the South of The Netherlands, is a leading company for all kinds of logistic and handling solutions for the Greenhouse industry, with specific focus on vegetables cultivation. KOAT has recently supplied and installed another advanced bell pepper (paprika) harvest-, buffer- and container unloading system for a highly respected pepper grower in the West of Germany.

The system consists of a AGV-system, with harvest containers, a container buffer system and an unloading system for the harvested bell peppers.

The AGV’s run unmanned through the greenhouse to and from the central packing area, controlled by an induction cable inside the concrete floor (realised in the most advanced manner to avoid contamination and wire damage). Automatic door opening is computer controlled, as well as positioning for various activities, the AGV has to perform. The AGV’s themselves are executed with hydraulic scissors to allow harvesting at various desired heights. The harvester walks behind the AGV (low level crop at the start of the season) or is standing on either of the 2 work platforms of the AGV inside a safety bar (for high level crop). Speed of moving forward and height are controlled by the harvester. The harvest containers have automatic lowering bottoms inside, to avoid dropping height for the peppers, hence avoiding the risk of damage.

For harvesting the AGV will be taken off the induction system and introduced onto the pipe rail. After the container has been filled, the AGV will be placed roughly over the cable again, and the robust AGV will bring the container autonomously to the buffer system in the sorting room. The harvester will take the next AGV which is already presented to him, to continue his/her activities. No time loss, combined with ergonomically good working conditions.

In the packing area, the harvest containers will be lifted off the AGV, and buffered sort by sort. The buffer system itself is a so-called “First In First Out” (FIFO) buffer, to enable the older peppers to be graded first. After unloading the full container from the AGV an empty container will be placed back onto the AGV trolley, for re-introduction into the greenhouse.

The container tipping system after the buffer, takes care for a gentle and an equally divided introduction of peppers into the grading machine.

The combination of efficient harvesting with AGV’s, autonomous transport, FIFO-buffer system of the harvest containers and optimal care of the products and the fact that the whole turn-key delivery comes out of one supplier, makes the choice for this KOAT system a logical one.

For more information
René de Jonge
Schoolstraat 19,
5711 CP Someren,
The Netherlands
T: (+31)493 496130
F: (+31)493 492113
C: (+31) 6 5333 1563