Archimede screw

Handling system with modular Archimedes screw

ArchimedysTM was born to meet the need of the worldwide leader of towed harvesting machines ALMA. Actually, he had a problem of manufacturing with Archimedes screw used to move and select grapes.

The goal was to find a modular solution, reliable and economical, with polymer materials, to adapt various screws on the sorters.

Alma-ARNAUD called on Exventys, specialist of industrial innovation, to develop a new concept of screw, without any risk of deterioration for the fruit and more reliable in use.

Innovation award 2011From the idea to the implementation

After studdying international patents, Exventys didn’t find any suitable solution :  there wasn’t any efficient modular Archimedes screw that could be exploitable industrially in severe use conditions.

This was due to the extreme difficulty in obtaining a piece with high mechanical resistant polymers and a form that guarantees the transmission of a significant effort without any performance loss.

Exventys organized its innovation approach and proposed a solution to its customer, including formalized and non formalized clauses of the technical specifications.

Exventys, thanks to the TRIZ method and 3D printing, proposed, tested and industrialized in record time, a solution that could solve all technical contradictions due to the use of a polymer screw to move powdered products.

The screw price is 10 times cheaper than the original solution and the level of performance is higher than all the projections.

From the prototype to the development of a whole range

Iserco company, a worldwide player specialized in vibrating bottoms production and powdery products transportation, detected very quickly the potential of ArchimedysTM system in industry and contributed to define a range of standard modules to build Archimedes screw in kit form, without any welding or finalization operations.

Innovation Major Prize

ArchimedysTM, worldwide registered trademark and patented product, received the Industrial Innovation Award AFICEP in 2011.


Elastomer scale

Development of scales for grape harvesting machines

Many wine-growing vineyards don’t use manually operated grape harvest anymore ; it doesn’t respond to quality and production imperatives. The volumes are so sizable that many diversified solutions were imagined, including different  vineyard configurations : high in Italy, low and narrow in Le Mâconnais. Grape harvesting machines have been adapted to all these aeras.

A harvesting machine looks like an unusual tractor : grapevine are shaken thanks to a harvesting head and fruits are gathered in a collecting tray through a conveyor. Articulated arms shake the vines, oscillating hundreds times per minute. Grapes, unhooked by the tremor, fall onto a scales bed connected to the tractor and arranged like a carpet at the level of the vine plant. Thanks to these scales, fruits don’t fall on the ground : they are collected and led to the conveyor. Scales step aside as the vine stock passes and close in a continuous movement despite the repeated shocks, the wear, the friction and mechanical  agressions of such an environment.

The product is reliable and resists to mechanical and dynamic loads, which is essential.

Our customer is specialized in harvesting machines conception and construction  for narrow vines. He gave to Exventys the conception and the realisation of a scale adapted to this configuration. The problem was to realize a flexible articulation and a rigid tray with only one material to avoid the multiplication of the components and assembly stress. Actually, scales are usually made from a rubber articulation fixed to a rigid tray.

A thermoplastic elastomer material was chosen and tested. This kind of material has the particularity to be at once flexible and at the same time to rigidify when its thickness is higher than a certain threshold. The geometry was optimized with a CAD program and some pieces were made directly to be validated with a set of tools used then for the series production. Thanks to the extraordinary resistance of the material and to the expertise of the partner taken for the fabrication, the scales did their job.

Exventys, by bringing expertise and innovation, contributed to the success of its customer who increased the value of its products.