Vanderlande Industries has completed development and implementation of its automated case picker, which forms the heart of the company’s new automated case picking system.
The company reckons that this system lowers the costs per case handled by 40 per cent compared with a traditional picking operation. The automated case picking system is especially aimed at retailers, which need high throughput to handle a large product range with a variety of cases.
In the automated case picking system, cases are stored on large trays, instead of individually, which reduces the number of crane movements and therefore the number of AS/RS systems required to handle the workload.
Compared with traditional manual picking, costs per case handled could be reduced by 40 per cent and investments could have a payback time of less than four years, said Vanderlande.
In the automated case picking system, pallets coming from bulk storage are automatically de-palletised. The cases are inspected and loaded onto large trays, each holding multiple cases. They are automatically stored in a racking structure.
The automated case picker retrieves the individual cases from the trays in the sequence required to fulfil orders. It can handle a wide variety of cases, such as trays, displays and PET bottles. The picked cases are conveyed to a robotic palletising system, which loads the products automatically as mixed loads on either pallets or roll cages. The loading takes family grouping and weight requirements into account to ensure store friendly delivery.