Smart warehouse tower
In addition to classic production applications, logistics is the growth market for robots. With their smart warehouse tower, eight companies show what processes in internal logistics could look like in the future.17 Nov 2021
SINA (Smart Picking Solutions for INtralogistics Automation) is a solution that automates intralogistics and material handling from incoming goods to the finished assembly at the individual production line cells just in time. SINA is versatile – as a fully automated system for warehouse lifters all the way to workbench. Partners in the project are Ecosphere Automation, Effimat, MIR (Mobile industrial Robots), Piab , Robominds, ROEQ, Sick, and Universal Robots .
Christian Fenk from Robominds describes the process: The goods, spare parts and tools arrive at the goods receiving area and are separated into crates. The tower can store 290 boxes. An AMR conveys these to the storage tower, hands over the crate and it is stored. The retrieval of goods works as follows: In the center is the target body for picking. To the left and right of it, the tower feeds the stored crates. The robot picks the required items into the target body. This can then be transported away via a conveyor system or an AMR, or remain in the system as a buffer. This would allow the user to have crates picked overnight for the early shift, temporarily stored, and then driven to the workstations in the morning. “The systems no longer have to wait for each other,” which is added value for the customer.
The special features in robotics: The objects in the crates do not have to be trained and a gripper change is also not necessary, assures Fenk. A gripper from the MX family from piab is used.
And Danny Denk, Managing Director of ECOSPHERE Automation, adds, “We have built a modular system. All components are interconnected and can be adapted to the customer’s needs.” The tower virtually has its own operating system and interfaces with the customer’s WMS. The makers can also imagine a connection to an Autostore system that stores in the background and SINA processes the orders as a buffer system. “We can also connect conveyor systems,” Denk emphasizes.
Customers are primarily those companies where people still use carts to move through manufacturing. The eight partners are now working on the marketing concept.
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