Ever Wondered How A Vending Machine Works
The vending machine business is rapidly growing in Australia. A lot of people see and use vending machines on a daily basis, but have you ever wondered how a vending machine works?
A vending machine is a robotic like machine that works for you.
It follows your commands, when you insert a coin or note, it recognizes it, even knowing to give you change, when you choose the product or item you want it again recognizes it and dispenses it for you, to you!
A vending machine has its own computer or the brain that runs the entire system.
Each piece of a vending machine has its own duty to perform in order to follow your request.
The vending machines brain or the computer is located in the central part.
The central part or the main computer is a small box with a few keys on it.
These keys are for vending machine operators or programmers who program vending machines in order to tell the machine what it should do when the customer presses some buttons.
There is another box called a validator.
The main duty of a validator is to accept the coins or notes that customers insert into the machine.
The validator is made up of a rubber treadmill which drags notes under optical scanners.
Each optical scanner is a camera which sends pictures to the computer.
The computer is programmed to look for certain marks in these pictures.
If it sees these marks, the validator knows if a note is genuine, and it knows how much it's worth.
But not everyone pays with notes, a lot of people pay with coins.
This is where the coin mech comes into play.
It distinguishes between different types of coins.
When you inset the coin, it passes through coils of wires; these wires create an electromagnetic energy field.
Any metal object such as a coin - will disturb this field. Fake coins affect the field differently, because they are made up of different metals and vary in thickness.
Depending on how the field changes, the coin mech knows what kind of coin you inserted.
It sorts the good coins into a separate stack and tells the computer how much money you've put in.
Then there is a part for the items or the products for sale.
These items or products are kept on pairs of metal spirals, which sit on adjustable shelves.
Each pair of spirals is connected to a gear, which is then connected to an electrical motor.
When the motors turn, the spirals rotate and push the item forward, then it is dispensed to you through a door or slot on the front of the machine.