Intralogistics 4.0

Emmi_146In the case of Industry 4.0 (or the Fourth Industrial Revolution, as it is more commonly known outside Germany), it is legitimate to ask how much is genuine innovation, and how much is simply clever marketing. And it is even more justified when it comes to Intralogistics 4.0. This blog post attempts to answer that question, and to describe what we can truly expect from 4.0.

What is 4.0 anyway?

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What is the right (miniload) storage and retrieval system for my business?

Einebenen-Shuttle System CubyAre you looking for an automatic storage solution for cartons, trays and containers? Well, there is a huge range of possibilities. These include storage and retrieval machines (SRMs) with a single or double mast, vertical lift modules, lifting beams, single or multi-level shuttles, carousels, gantry cranes, and container stackers with shuttles. In fact, the list goes on. Moreover, there are numerous load-carrying devices, and you can choose between single or multi-deep racking.

Spoilt for choice

So which solution is the right one for you? This blog post provides practical guidance for the decision-making process. I will be the first to admit that a post of this kind is no substitute for an in-depth analysis of your unique needs. However, my goal is to help you narrow down your options, and prepare the right questions for your supplier or expert consultant.

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Finding the right fit — The development of standard-sized containers

euro-behaelter_euro-palette_ssi-schaeferToday, the metric system is employed in nearly every country across the globe. In retrospect, however, this outcome was by no means guaranteed. For a long time, units and systems of measurement had multiple definitions, and varied from province to province. It was not until the late 18th century that the French Académie des Sciences in Paris established a highly precise definition of a metre, paving the way for the adoption of the metric system by over 200 nations. This also laid the foundations for other forms of standardisation. And it made products such as euro and KLT mini-load containers possible – standard-sized units used throughout logistics, that we are familiar with, but do not necessarily know much about.

Read more about evolution of standard-sized containers

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Preventing electrostatic discharge in intralogistics

ESD Electro Static DischargePlastic containers play a critical role in moving materials from A to B. However, most plastics are insulators, and do not readily conduct electricity. And that can create challenges – as this means they can acquire an electrostatic charge. In fact, the surface of a conventional plastic container can have a potential as high as 20,000 volts. This poses a great danger to electronic devices, as an electrostatic discharge (ESD) with even very low voltages can cause significant damage.

Read more about electrostatic discharge in intralogistics

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Determining throughput in intralogisitics: Have you taken everything into account?

roller_switch_weiche_durchsatz_berechnen_in_der IntralogistikIf someone in the logistics industry says “throughput”, the first thing that comes to mind as a definition is: “events per unit of time”. While this may be correct, it is not the whole story. This blog post looks at the challenges associated with accurately determining throughput.

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Storage Systems in Asia — Part II: From Man to Goods to Goods to Man

Lagerautomation-in-AsienAfter much hesitation, companies in Asia are beginning to adopt automation in the warehouses. While some automation in the warehouse to improve the order pickers’ lot may seem like a no brainer, as order picking is time consuming, Asian operators have preferred to rely on manpower. In the past it was easy to fill warehouse with low cost foreign labour where their numbers could be increased during the peak seasons and reduced during lull periods.

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Storage Systems in Asia — Part I: Then and Now

Brian Miles, Managing Director / SSI Schaefer Asia

Brian Miles, Managing Director SSI Schaefer Asia

How time flies. We are approaching the end of yet another year. I like to pause to reflect on the past – where we were and how we have developed since as an industry in Asia.

I came to Singapore in 1984 when the Asian miracle was unfolding. Fuelled by strong exports and rapid industrialisation, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan, powered ahead at unprecedented growth rates, earning them the nickname the Asian Tigers. China, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand joined their ranks a little later. It was a heady time for the region.

Read more about the development of storage systems in asia.

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Fascination logistics – developments in intra-logistics industry

Rudolf Keller

Rudolf Keller, CEO

Recently, somebody asked me whether I would recommend a career in intralogistics to young graduates. The answer was a resounding yes – which is why I would like to highlight a few aspects of this extremely innovative, dynamic and fast-moving industry here.

Hardly any industry has in recent decades so rapidly changed as the warehouse logistics. Increasingly complex processes require efficient solutions and technologies to keep up with the frantic pace. This trend will continue – especially in terms of the keyword “industrial 4.0”. Let me show you below a few aspects of a highly innovative and rapidly developing industry.

Read more about the challenges of intra-logiostics and development processes in the logistics industry.

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Think! The goods to person principle does not solve all problems within a distribution centre

solar_dsc_0898_konterFormer IBM CEO Thomas J. Watson first used the one-word slogan, ”think”, in an address to employees at National Cash Register (NCR). Later, IBM even registered it as a trademark, and it remains part of Big Blue’s brand portfolio to this day.
Why have I used this motto as the heading of my blog post? Well, it’s a bit neater than “A warning about over-optimistic hype”, don’t you think?

This is the topic I’d like you to think about.

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How to work better with barcodes

scannerWe know what you’re thinking: “Barcodes are old news!” And yes, they have been around for a long time. The first barcode was patented by Joseph Woodland in 1952, and they have been used in distribution and retail for more than thirty years. Today’s barcodes are more effective and reliable than ever – but expectations have also risen. This means understanding how barcodes work is very important if you are to make the most of this technology.

You know how it is: you are at the checkout, struggling to pack your bags as quickly as the cashier scans. Sometimes you manage it – but never in supermarkets like Aldi in Germany or Hofer in Austria. How can they scan items so much faster?

The secret is in their product barcodes. Let’s take a look…

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