A new floor track system from ATR Strothmann, Cambridge, Ontario, Canada (www.strothmann.com), uses a round rail set into and nearly flush with the floor to make it easy to move heavy loads. And the tracks only protrude about 2 mm from the floor, so there is little risk of employees tripping over them, and in-plant vehicles can cross the tracks with ease. The rails are hardened and polished steel (64 HRc), while rollers are ball-bearing steel. The rollers, with a Gothic-arch profile, mate with the rails and have low rolling friction. Friction is so low, one person can move a 10-ton load, according to the company.

The tracks come in two sizes, 25 and 40-mm diameters, and there are nonrusting versions for wet environments. A hollow-rail version accommodates heating elements for outdoor use. Optional equipment includes a driver and position sensor to build a self-powered device, three different wiper blades that keep the rails clean, and suspension components that absorb impacts.