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DE - How does a Power and Free Overhead Conveyor work?

Teleflex T4 power and free conveyor

How does a Power and Free Conveyor Work?

Power & Free conveyors are based on a twin-track system. The top track is used for the power chain and the bottom free track for the carrier trolleys. On an equal pitch pusher dogs are fitted in the power chain and are used to pull the carriers around the system. The movable cams of the pusher dogs latch onto the trolley to form an interlink connection.

Stop stations are used to disengage the link between the power chain and trolleys. When a stop station is closed the carrier will stop while the power chain keeps moving. Because of the pusher dog and trolley design multiple carriers can accumulate behind a stop station.

The Power and Free is the most flexible automated overhead conveyor solution
Advantages of a Power & Free Conveyor
  • Compact and save design with movable parts inside the tack
  • Modular system with standard parts
  • Flexible design for optimal lay-out planning
  • Advanced automatic control system with touch screen user interface and remote access.

Different standard components are available to design the most optimal conveyor lay-out. The track sections are available as Power & Free, Free or only Power in standard or cut-to-length sections.

Bends can be horizontal or vertical. The radius of the bends is often standard. Non standard bend can be made on request.

The power chain comes in standard chain link pitches and can be fitted with open or closed bearings.

Depending on product dimensions and the conveyor lay-out the product carrier can have different trolley configurations. Using multiple trolleys the load capacity of carrier can be increased.

A Power & Free system needs a drive system. Depending on system parameters the drive mechanism can be a caterpillar drive or a screw drive unit. For safety all drive units are utilized with a torque limiter that disconnects the drive force between the drive unit and gear motor.

D8 Caterpillar Drive Unit
Caterpillar Drive Unit


D8 Screw Drive Unit
Screw Drive Unit


Stop stations are available as standard design, ATEX or high temperature for curing ovens. Stop stations are controlled and monitored by the PLC/PC control system.

Switches are installed at position where carriers must divert to other directions. Pneumatic cylinders with position sensors are used to actuate the switches. Depending on the position in the lay-out switches can also be self-switching. Switches are also controlled and monitored by the main control system.

To avoid a much as possible wear of the chain and trolleys a lubrication unit can be used. This automatic controlled device lubricates parts such as the chain links and bearings on a pre-set interval.

Special parts are available such as lift- and drop sections, transfer chains, pneumatic pushers and product rotation units.

There are also solutions to have a dipping tank crane system take over the products from the carriers and after the dipping process hang them back onto the carriers.

Below you can see a project video of a T4 Power and Free conveyor in use. When you are interested in a Power and Free conveyor or any other material handling solution, please contact us on +31 (0) 344 61 63 63 or email: