AGV Glossary

Definition of all abbreviations and technical terms used on this website

(this page is constantly getting expanded as more terms are used)

The following acronyms and names are used on this website:

AIC – AGV Interface Controller
The AIC is a software connecting the production control system (for example MES or ERP) with the vehicle fleet. It translates material requests into a transport order, getting goods from one place to the other and using the vehicles like a taxi control center.
Details about the tasks and properties of AIC.

AGV
Automated Guided Vehicle. A system for material transport.

Battery Balancing
The battery consists of single cells, which are interconnected to a block. In order to draw the same amount of power from each one, a balancing circuit keeps them at the same charge level.
More information about the properties and advantages of our battery technology.

ERP Enterprise Resource Plannig
ERP defines the management system for capital, human and operating resources and material, in order to coordinate and plan them appropriately. Manufacturers prioritize material requirements and machine capacity planning. There are many ERP software systems, which are customized depending on the company size, sector, range of features and software technology.

Fleet
A driverless transport system consist of a fleet of 1 to n automatic, driverless vehicles. They are driven by a management system. The assignmentof the transport orders is made by the AIC.

Fleet management
The fleet management supervises the technical parameters like the battery charge, and sends the vehicles to the charging station if necessary.

GUI Graphical User Interface
The user interface is the visualization of the software and allows operation with visual elements like buttons, drop lists, dialog boxes. The operations can be performed with mouse, touchscreen or keyboard.

Load handling device
The used load handling device depends on the load, which needs to be transported. Belt conveyors or roller conveyors are the most common devices.

Laser Scanning
A laser scanner scans its environment and detect the reflection. Processing the data, it computes a 2D-picture of the silhouettes, so that vehicles can move in their environment. After an implementation, the technology can also be used as a security scanner to scan persons. Safety and warning fields are activated, depending on the speed of the person.

MES – Manufacturing Execution System
Software system to supervise and control important data in a production process in real time. MES is often used as a synonymous for production control. In the automation hierarchy MES is located in the operation command level between management level (ERP) and process control level (SCADA)

Navigation
Navigation is the faculty to calculate an optimal path to destination, when the actual position is given. For this process, several parameters must be considered, like in car navigation software, in order to pass obstacles or avoid certain routes. The algorithm becomes more and more complicated, the more factors must be considered. Further details about proANT navigation

Opportunity Charging
The batteries of the proANT vehicles last longer, when they are in a charge range between 70 and 30% and get charged even during running operations. The loading procedure lasts between 40 to 60 s, when the vehicle is standing at a transmission station. Therefore is important to plan the position of these stations, while defining specifications. A good place for a charging station is close to a transfer station, where the vehicles regularly deliver their loads. With opportunity charging, extra charging on separate stations is not needed anymore, therefore the vehicles are more often available for transportation

Safety of people
When vehicles drive in the production site on the paths, which are also used by people, the safety problem is a priority. AGVs must stop or run around, when people cross their way. Not only braking distance, also load restraint must be considered. More details about safety.

Scalability
A vehicle fleet grows with the number of transports. At first it might start with a little trasport capacity and a small investment. If the business runs, more vehicles can be added and just need to be registered in the system.

PLC – Programmable Logic Controller
PLC is a controlling system for machines. It is connected to machines, sensors and other actuators. There are several, manufacturer-dependent PLC programming languages used to connect with machine features and visualise user panels on HMI Human Machine Interfaces.

Transport Robot
The word „robot“ should not be used without a more precise definition. Many research activities are performed in this field. However, safety requirements request a robot to work behind a safety fence. Since this is not possible for AGVs, defining them as robots might cause problems.

Triangle
The Triangle is a tilted and lacquered plate used for vehicles‘ fine positioning. Its angle is necessary for orientation purposes at all stations where vehicles pick up or drop off materials and have to navigate with precision to do so.

Visualisation
The visualisation is meant to display machine or system status in a clearly arranged manner.