Over the past few years shuttle solutions for intra-logistics systems turned into an effective supplement to AS/RS solutions for mini-load storage and retrieval applications. As the demand for shuttle systems is constantly increasing, you may ask the following question with respect to the positioning of shuttles compared to AS/R machines:
The straight answer to this question is "No". Both approaches have their justification.
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The overall solution is the key
The key to an effective intra-logistics solution is not in the product, but the overall solution. Customers must work closely with systems providers to primarily define the required processes that are the basis for the technical solution options.
Simulations help to find the best solution
Simulations of the different systems may help to find the best appropriate product. It is essential to intensively analyse the intra-logistics requirements to be able to select the right system, regardless of whether a shuttle, Commissioner or AS/R mini-load system will be the optimum solution in the end.
The system decision depends on the required performance
Shuttle systems will gain acceptance in certain fields of application. They are particularly suitable for high-performance applications, for instance. AS/RS solutions are advisable for low to medium throughput requirements due to their smaller investment costs.
Systems providers must have a diversified range of products
The decisive factors for being able to find the most economical solution based on concrete requirements are the offered range of products and the experience of a systems provider. Besides, software plays an important role, too. The better controls, material flow controller and warehouse management system (WMS) are interconnected with the material handling equipment as well as the ERP system, the more effectively will a system work.
- System selection and design are decisive
- The performance of the AS/RS approach zone determines the overall performance
- Shuttle solutions can flexibly be adapted to future demands
- Sofisticated safety concepts enable trouble-free operations
- The lighter the better?
- The construction design has crucial effects