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Support systems for material handling in forklifts
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Health Systems Engineering, Ergonomics.
2014 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Hjälpmedel för materialhantering med gaffeltruckar (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

The world is becoming more and more globalized. The transportation and trading of goods across borders are becoming more frequent. All this is putting greater demands on companies dealing with material handling and distribution of supply. Material handling with forklifts is an area which is associated with risk of accidents.  Statistics from both the US and Europe shows that damages to material and personnel is frequent. A certain area that is in need of improvement is the handling of material on high storages. These storages can be as high as 15m. When stacking and picking pallets at those heights it is very hard for the driver to get a good view of the pallet and handle the material in a safe way. There are several support systems available on the market today, to aid drivers with handling material on these heights. The question to be answered in this thesis is, how good are these systems and what systems should be recommended to users of forklifts?

By the use of a literature study, where both available products on the forklift market as well as support systems from other markets were studied I got a good overview of available technologies. Using this information and methods for product design a number of technical concepts was generated. The concepts were limited to technologies that are available today. Because of that some technologies and concepts were overlooked. Most of the concepts consisted of a camera and a display used in different ways.

A first evaluation of the concepts was made. Four concepts were chosen to be further evaluated. These four concepts were:

  1. Camera with guide lines
  2. Camera without guide lines
  3. Fork tip camera with guide lines
  4. No Camera. (benchmark)

The concepts were then evaluated, tested and graded using the five criteria: Time (productivity), Safety, physical ergonomics, Usability and Preferred concept.

The results showed that the concept consisting of the by TMHE used fork camera (2 above) combined with a new display and guide lines was the best support system.

The result is fairly reliable because of the many different evaluation techniques used and the fact they all point the same concept. The validity however should be investigated further during a more extensive field test.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. , 70 p.
TRITA-STH, 2014:21
National Category
Interaction Technologies
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-145878OAI: diva2:720806
External cooperation
Toyota Material Handling
Subject / course
Educational program
Master of Science - Ergonomics and Human-Technology-Organisation
2014-01-16, Toyota Material Handling, Mjölby, 15:42 (Swedish)
Available from: 2016-09-09 Created: 2014-06-02 Last updated: 2016-09-09Bibliographically approved

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