AUTOMATED STORAGE SYSTEMS

After Friday’s class talking about warehousing and its design I decided to investigate, as an electronic engineer, about automated warehouse’s design.

I found a really interesting company, AR Racking, which is specialized in designing, manufacturing, calculating, and installing industrial storage systems for heavy loads.

One of its storages systems is the automated warehouse for heavy loads with automated access to unit loads too. They difference two types of automated storage:

  • Automated pallet warehouses
  • Automated warehouses for cartons

The second one it has drawn my attention, they have a particular storage system for mini loads related with cartons.
The mini load automated storage system is the optimal solution for the storage of light and small unit loads with high stock turnover ratios. The system is using automated stacker crane mechanisms to handle loads, offering high performance and reduced carton storage and handling times.

Its system is based on reducing operational isolation and maximizing floor and height space to be considered high density.

Reliability allows the daily inventory of stored products and minimizes errors when handling loads.

The advantages that I can see of this automated warehouse design are:

  • The great density of storage
  • The storage in different heights
  • Ease of the warehouse expanding up to a lot of meters high
  • Handling large weights
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Autonomous transport vehicle?

That’s right, better known as Volvo Vera, totally electric and autonomous concept for companies that need transportation on a permanent basis in their fixed terminals.

How does it work?

Each of these vehicles is connected to a control center, where the progress of each transport and its measurements such as battery charge, load content, service requirements and other parameters are continuously monitored. From this same control center, the speed and progress of the operations are adapted in order not to have delays or contingency situations so that the operation is efficient.

The vehicles that operate on the same route, cooperate with each other, in order to optimize the delivery and create an optimum flow. All the vehicles are designed to be able to locate their position every moment with millimeter precision, they control the operations with details, analyze what is happening outside on the road with sensors and respond with accuracy.

The system allows greater flexibility and productivity, with greater precision in deliveries in places such as ports and large logistics centers including intermodal terminals. Currently, the needs of the logistics and transport sector, demand solutions that guarantee the continuous flow of goods at the same time, seeking protection of the environment.

The future

Volvo Trucks with its Vera concept, in which automation, content and electro mobility technologies are developed, is aimed at habitual and repetitive operations that contemplate short distances, large volumes and high precision in delivery. Although it is currently a concept, it is the beginning of a new Hera in terms of autonomy and electro mobility in large-scale logistics centers.

For Volvo, the intent is to offer its customers transport solutions without problems and concerns.

The Bullet Train-Maglev sc

Imagine a floating train crossing Japan at full speed. Its wheels do not touch the ground, it is a dream that comes true, but as the years go by, Maglev continues developing fastest trains.

Functioning

The Maglev SC or Superconducting Magnetic train has been developed by the Central Japan Railway Company and the Railway Technical Research Institute since the 70s.

Its operation is based on magnetic impulsion, capable of creating a powerful magnetic field that acts between the cars of the train and the way it moves. Plaza Mag-Lev is composed of “Magnetic” and “Levitation”. This allows the train to float in the air thanks to an electrodynamic suspension system better known as the EDS system. The rails have two sets of crossed coils of “eight” that create an electromagnetic modulation. The train, on the other side, carries superconductors magnets called “bogies”. When the train is stopped, it rests on the rubber wheels.

When it starts to run.

When you start your journey, the train moves slowly over the lines making it possible for the magnets located under it to interact with the ones on the road. Once the train reaches 150 kilometers per hour (93 miles per hour), the magnetic force created is powerful enough to raise the train by 10 centimeters from the ground, eliminating friction and allowing the speed to increase.

The same magnetic outside that raises the train, ensures that it advances and stays balanced without leaving the road, which makes the trip extremely fast but pleasant, smooth and exceptionally safe.


The maximum speed of the Maglev today

In April of 2015, a superconducting train Maglev broke the two records of existing speeds of vehicles on rails. The train was timed and reached 603 kilometers per hour. A speed is superior to the maglev trains of shanghai china and South Korea that run between 268 miles and 311 miles per hour.

Japanese train routes

At present, they have built different types of Maglevs which are in Japan, China and South Korea, by the year 2027 it is expected that the Japanese Maglev will cover the Chuo Shinkansen line to unite Tokyo and Nagoya. This journey is scheduled to take approximately 40 minutes. Less time if you fly from one city to another.

After reading about this breakthrough we can appreciate the importance of research, technology, and innovation in all areas. It is impressive how the logistics are present everywhere. As throughout the years, travel times from one place to another have been shortened considerably.

The birth of your truck

If you are passionate about trucks, you work in the transport sector, at some point you asked yourself how they are manufactured, how is the assembly process, because I will tell you here.

In this occasion, we will focus on the Mercedes-Benz Actros truck, which is produced in the Daimler facilities in Wörth am Rhein, with around 3 million square meters.  It is the world’s largest truck assembly plant.

To move from one side to another is very common to see workers traveling by bicycle in kilometric corridors.

This factory has a complex design that is divided into two zones. The first, chassis assembly line, mounted along the plant transversely, is a chain of approximately 600 meters long where 6 hours of work are dedicated to each unit.

The technology used in this factory, is advanced, use lasers to mark the plates of the chassis, this is so that the workers, at the beginning of the assembly, can know the measurements of screws, couple to use, place of assembly of each piece, etc. In parallel, the second zone is located the body assembly line, with different stations or work units such as cabins, paint, interior, accessories, etc. Later in the last unit of the second zone, it is aligned with the first one to later take out the final product.

The production of trucks is still more complex than the production of other vehicles, due to the level of personalization of the same, each client has special requirements (a la carte) which means 2400 combinations  as load capacity, motorization, power, torque, motor box relationship, chassis design configuration, and others more. It is for this reason that it can not be produced in masse.

In Worth am Rhein, 400 trucks per day are produced, that is, 25 trucks per hour and 80,000 trucks per year.

The Suppliers, this factory is supplied with 4000 pieces per truck, which translates to a wide range of suppliers 4000 to be exact. And this is why 1000 of these suppliers, have their plants “in situ” wall to wall with the factory of Mercedes Benz.

The logistics of this factory, has such a high level of complexity, that it took 2 years to adjust the elements to the needs of the new vehicle Actros, and during this time, the production continued but mixing the chains of assemblies with a vehicle and other.

WHAT MAKES HUNDREDS OF EMPLOYEES SMILE IN WAREHOUSE?

I love this video because it shows me how do such giants warehouse distribute customers orders in the picking station and, if you focused on the detail, the position of those boxes are well setted ,there’s nothing special but make it square with robot pallet size.

Some employees who work in IKEA was asked why do you feel happy in such a giant warhouse facing with those robots every day?

A single mother replied that, they are just few workers(average to 100)here, but the automatic order-picking eliminate some kind of work and task which they were supposed to implement before.Now, she has time to send her kids to chirldren and accompany them somehow.

Automatic order-picking system reduce orders preparation cost and numbers of personnel working in warehouse. Some of the benefits like control inventory management well, less risky in peronnel safety problem and, make the pallet more precisely.

It has been using more commonly nowadays, such an advanced technology drives logistic supply chain developed more resultful.

WHAT AND WHY TRANSPORTATION MANAGEMENT?

As a division of supply chain segment, transportation is the only way to meet customers instant gratification and it’s needed to be calculated well for the same-day delivery, which enables the core operations function in an effective way.

Quantity, pallets, movements are relative key words in transportation management. A good transportation management can help removing the unnecessary shipping expenses and others resource outputs. On the other hand, time management has been improved somehow, because customers may consider deliver time is a partial of customer service and is very important.

While not each product can be distributed by ship, bu bus or by plane etc..Just because of its distance, price and product itself attribute(eg: fresh products). In another words, when products are shipped, they are supposed to be put in a suitable,cheaper, safety and faster channel. However, optimized routing can save time and money.

Single vs. Multiple Queues – Which one is BEST

Queue or waiting in lines is something everyone does and waiting lines are encountered everywhere. When queue management works, your contact center is a healthy organization that represents your company in a positive light; but when queue management fails, your contact center is infected with the “contact center disease” – hold time. When implementing an intelligent Queue Management Strategy, contracting the “contact center disease” or hold time will be avoided, which will increase customer satisfaction and reduce your contact center costs

A SINGLE-LINE QUEUE…

Has shorter average wait times. It can look like a single-line queue comes with a long wait, but compared to multiple lines, people are standing in one line for a much shorter time than if they had chosen from many lines. You’re not at the mercy of the customer in front of you or a slow or chatty cashier. The service points are staggered so the entire line benefits from a single fast cashier and the agony of a single slow customer is spread evenly among all who wait.

“First come, first served” is inarguably the fairest way for a line to form. When all customers are standing in the same line, the perception is that there is no doubt who was there when and who should be getting attention before others.

A MULTIPLE-LINE QUEUE.

The customer has greater flexibility in a multiple-line queue because they get to select the line in which they want to stand. Providing they’re not of the jockeying nature, having the power to choose can make a customer happier because they’ve selected where they want to be and aren’t feeling forced to stand in a single line.

When there is one line, serpentine or straight, long or short, a customer can feel trapped by the thought of being at the mercy of only one waiting option. Multiple-line queues maintain the illusion that there is more service available and, therefore, worth the wait.

Conclusion

It’s possible to argue both sides of the coin when it comes to choosing a single-line or multiple-line queue configuration. What ultimately matters is what kind of queuing system works best for your business.