Why Companies are Investing in AGVs

While various forms of automatic guided vehicles (AGVs) have been aiding in material transport for decades, the last few years have seen an increase in companies investing in AGVs. As AGV technology has continued to improve, the potential for AGVs to improve efficiency and employee safety while cutting cost has been the tipping point leading many companies to invest. It is apparent that companies are seeing the long-term value in AGVs as a solution for automated material transport. The reasons are clear and simple. For many operations, AGVs offer a substantial return on investment (ROI) while increasing safety.

Navigation Technology

There are many types of AGVs with differing navigation technology. AGVs fitted with laser navigation, known as Laser Guided Vehicles (LGVs), have become increasingly popular in recent years. LGVs employ laser technology aboard the vehicle to triangulate their position in relation to laser reflectors set up at intervals in the LGV environment. The reflectors, along with the path the vehicle will take, are programmed into software that guides the LGV. The LGV triangulates its location multiple times per second.

Determinging the Value and ROI

LGVs offer maximum benefit and cost savings in operations that require repeated movement of goods over long distances. When material transport is being carried out by people driving lift trucks over long routes, labor costs add up quickly. In the right conditions, these labor costs can be greatly diminished by investing in LGVs.

Factors to Consider When Determining Return on Investment

  1. 1. Salary of lift truck drivers including all benefits, sick, vacation, holiday pay and over time – LGVs don’t take breaks or call in sick
  2. 2. Cost of lift truck – There are fewer repairs needed with an LGV because they are driven in a controlled manner.
  3. 3. Cost of damage to products, plant equipment or structures caused by lift truck accidents
  4. 4. Cost of injuries to employees caused by lift truck accidents

Increasing Safety

LGVs increase safety by eliminating the potential for errors made by lift truck drivers that result in lift truck accidents. Employees, products and equipment are safer by eliminating the possibility for operator error.

CIMS LGVs come standard with additional safety lasers that scan the area for obstacles in the programmed path. The LGV will come to a complete stop if the lasers detect an unidentified object in its path and then automatically resume its course once the object is removed from its path. When other safety conditions are met, this safety feature allows LGVs to move faster than older AGVs that use mechanical bumpers since they are able to identify obstructions from further away and stop before impact.


CIMS LGVs are designed, built and serviced locally from our Dalton, Ga. location. Vehicles are customized for the application. Common styles use a traditional fork lift with a mast or roller bed. CIMS LGVs are “smart” enough to run fully automatic or respond to call station push buttons to “retrieve” goods for transport. They can also prioritize specific pick up and drop off points. As operations expand, additional LGVs are easy to add to the workflow.

For more information on CIMS LGVs, please click here or give us a call.

CIMS | 2204 INDUSTRIAL SOUTH ROAD | DALTON, GA 30720 | 1.800.644.2467