Logistics Link South, 7 – 8 February at Sandown Park, Esher.

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A number of companies are using Logistics Link to launch new products. VSc Solutions is launching Supply Chain Dynamic, the industry’s newest enterprise-wide supply chain management solution, following the successful launch of Dispatch Dynamic, VSc’s mobile telematics and ePOD solution, at last year’s Sandown event.

Supply Chain Dynamic, designed using the latest model-driven architecture and developed in the industry-standard J2EE, offers the functionality and flexibility to adapt to changing business dynamics, and provide greater investment protection, according to VSc Solutions. It is the latest in a long line of solutions, including Merchandising and Mfour, that have come out of the VSc stable.

I2 Mobile Solutions is using Logistics Link South to unveil a range of off-the-shelf software products that enable business processes to be carried out on PDAs and other hand-held computers. FMgo! is a suite of facilities management applications; VANgo! is a van sales solution; DELgo! a consignment delivery program. Other titles are in development.

Inotec UK will, for the first time, be showing an innovative oblique barcode label for warehouse racking applications. The label design offers ease and accuracy of scanning, combined with easy colour identification of rack positions. This solution is already in use on several major sites and is setting the trend for accurate and easy warehouse identification.

Also on view will be Inotec’s new low-cost UHF EPC1 Generation 2 label specifically designed for the retail logistics market.

Fargo Systems will be previewing the latest release of the TOPS transport and logistics solution. Highlights include a fully integrated and customisable fleet management module, including a graphical appointments planning board that is designed to replace the ubiquitous wall-planner associated with the day-to-day fleet management tasks of booking MOTs, services, holidays, and so on.

Tecsys is showing EliteSeries 7.4, its latest suite of distribution software. It says this release raises the bar in distribution management. Release 7.4 is the first-to-market SCM software suite that brings internet-based technology together with feature-rich business functionality designed specifically for distribution-centric enterprises.

Forklifts to the fore

Linde Material Handling is exhibiting three models. The revolutionary X range of 1.4 to 1.7 tonne reach trucks was launched in March 2005 and features a new concept in reach truck design. The operator’s space has been virtually doubled, providing greater comfort, ergonomics and panoramic visibility through the wide mast. The 39X range of hydrostatic engine powered forklifts were the first to employ an integrated suspension system.

A wide range of BT Rolatruc’s materials handling solutions will be on display, including the unique and innovative Pro Lifter and electric Pro Lifter M hand pallet trucks, the Uni-mover pedestrian-operated towing device, the Ergomover tow truck/order picker and the Ixion SWE160D ‘double-stack’ powered pallet truck.

The Pro Lifter hand truck features a device that enables its operator to overcome the inertia of a heavy load. A lever on the handle activates a mechanism known as BT Pro Start Technology, which connects with the truck’s drive wheels.

Once it is connected, with a single ordinary pump-motion the truck is moving. This works in both travel directions. The Pro Lifter M uses the concept of motorised horizontal travel, providing significant ergonomic benefits in any application that uses hand trucks.

Crown Lift Trucks has earned a reputation for product design, engineering and manufacturing and it recently won a Design of the Decade award from International Design Society of America.

Other forklift truck suppliers at the exhibition include: Aisle Master, Cesab, Finning, Narrow Aisle, Hubtex, and Lektro.

Innovations in warehouse systems and technology

Applications Developments will be show-casing its ALcode Print and Apply labelling system, which has been tried and approved in many logistics warehouses nation-wide. It will also be debuting its new Inventris product range. On display will be the latest developments in inventory and asset management solutions, including Enterprise, a wireless, web-based stock and order processing solution with links to Sage and Tas.

TempAstor manufactures and supplies temporary buildings and specialises in providing instant customised solutions under the most stringent health and safety procedures. Buildings are available for hire or sale and comply with British and EEC safety standards for structural integrity, fire and safety codes.

Allibert Buckhorn offers customers a single source for equipment to fit out warehouses, supply chain distribution centres, retail outlets and store rooms. Products include pallet and cantilever racking, shelving, mezzanines, multi-tier systems, plastic containers and pallets.

Linpac Storage Systems will be exhibiting its range of racking and shelving systems. Linpac has a complete product offering that extends from simple adjustable pallet racking and shelving systems through to the most sophisticated mobile storage, garment hanging and high bay installations.

ASG Services offers complete floor marking and installations services which are among the most durable available.

Since its launch, Knapp’s order storage and retrieval (OSR) system has won customers around the world, with installations including: Koch (USA), Richter (Austria), Strumsas (Greece), Office Depot (France) and AAH Pharmaceuticals (UK).

The OSR system is specifically designed for picking small, slow-moving products, which account for some 80 per cent of the typical stock range. Combining AS/RS with pick-by-light technology, the system provides up to 1,000 picks per man-hour.

The OSR stores goods in plastic bins – which can be of various sizes – that are handled on trays within a lightweight racking system that is only limited in height by the constraints of the building. Each level of each aisle of the OSR features a shuttle car that both retrieves and puts away trays of bins.

These shuttles interface with elevators at the front of the aisles, which provide vertical transport of the trays to a conveyor system that feeds pick stations featuring pick-by-light and put-to-light technology.

Lifetime Software’s Gipsy product for protocol conversion and interfacing enables upgrading, replacement or modernisation of automation equipment without costly changes to the existing control systems. The Gipsy software sits between the control system and the automation equipment and manages all communications to the automation equipment. Gipsy can also be used to simplify complex protocols, allowing straightforward use of automation equipment or to enable standard communication to be used for non-standard or old automation equipment, ideal where a host system is being upgraded to a standard solution.

Travhydro produces storage equipment that includes Travidrive, its drive-in/through pallet racking system. Travhydro recently signed a distributor agreement with Interior Motives UK of Grantham, covering the East and South East of England. It recently secured an order from Proctor & Gamble for a 27,000 pallet clad-rack building which is due for completion in summer 2006.

DS Smith Packaging specialises in the manufacture of corrugated packaging and related services throughout the UK. It has conventional corrugated, speciality, decorative, heavy-duty, sheet feeding and sheet plants which produce a wide range of products.

Third party logistics providers

Palletforce, the palletised distribution network is just one of the logistics services providers exhibiting at Logistics Link. It has invested in an advanced check-weighing system at its Lichfield hub that promises increased accuracy and safety for pallet loading.

Accurate weighing is vital to ensure the safe placement of pallets aboard double-deck trailers, as poor distribution can leave trailers prone to rollovers. Where previously forklift drivers had to make an educated guess as to the weight of a pallet, the new system allows them to place pallets based on factual information.

Other logistics service providers at the show include: FDB Distribution, Courtenham, Roadferry and Sameday UK.

IT systems to provide the visibility

With the major supermarkets experimenting with RFID systems there has been an upsurge of interest in the technology. Visitors to the Proteus stand will have the opportunity to view latest in RFID technology. The automatic identification and data capture solution identifies and decodes hundreds of unique standard barcodes simultaneously in a single read, with unprecedented speed and accuracy. The solution is being used in the retail supply chain, automotive manufacturing and reusable assets pool management operations to provide per-asset visibility and to increase operational efficiencies.

There are no expensive tags involved and the system can be set up at a fraction of the normal RFID costs.

Manhattan Associates provides IT systems for demand intelligence, advanced planning, supply chain planning, supply chain execution and business process platform capabilities.

A recent example has been implementation of a warehouse management system at Thorntons, the manufacturer, retailer and distributor of confectionery.

The solution has been deployed at Thorntons’ 140,000 sq ft, multi-temperature central storage facility and distribution point in Alfreton, Derbyshire, and is serving the company’s 588 retail stores across the UK.

RedPrairie will also be exhibiting at Logistics Link. UniDrug Distribution Group recently synchronised and automated all of its warehouse management processes by implementing DLx Warehouse. UDG commissioned the new warehouse management system to modernise and streamline operations at its Derbyshire distribution centre.

The same instance of DLx Warehouse is used to manage two warehouses built on the same site, with a total capacity of 60,000 pallets. The first stock was transferred to DLx Warehouse after an 18-week implementation carried out by RedPrairie.

Minster Logistics has launched its voice-enabled warehouse management system. This covers all aspects of the warehousing operation, including receipt of goods, put-away, replenishment, picking, marshalling, loading, full stock takes and perpetual inventory stock takes.

Central to the system is the voice management console which allows all warehousing activity to be monitored, controlled and progressed, starting with a high-level view of each activity, a graphical indication of progress towards completion of the current warehouse workload, and drill-down options to monitor the progress of individual tasks and the operators performing them.

Central Systems & Automation will be demonstrating its Autostore warehouse management and control system.

Autostore was recently installed at the new automated warehouse, designed and built by Stocklin for bottle manufacturer Quinn Glass, which supports the latest state-of-the-art production and bottle-filling facility at Elton in Cheshire.

Clandestine develops warehousing and inventory management modules for warehousing, logistics, distribution and manufacturing companies.

The integrated modules stand by themselves or can be used in concert with existing systems to create a result that is ideal for your business. In one example, a food manufacturer integrates Clandestine’s modules and mobile computing with its existing systems to manage the raw materials into the process as well as finished product.

Peak Technologies is an international systems integrator of automatic identification and data collection (AIDC) equipment and systems.

Its systems integration specialists and factory-trained technicians are experts in wireless radio frequency network and ERP integration solutions, enterprise printing, bar-code scanning, mobile computing, terminal and software technologies.

MapMechanics Mobile takes output from a routing and scheduling system such as TruckStops (also available from MapMechanics), processes it for wireless transmission to a mobile device such as a mobile phone, PDA or in-cab computer, integrates it with real-time on-board or portable navigation systems to show drivers the way to each call point, and captures delivery information for transmission back to base.

The system is modular. It can be provided as a complete package (including PDAs and navigation software if required), or just in the form required by individual operators.

Chevin Fleet Solutions, which specialises in fleet management software will be showing its latest development for defect reporting. Giving online access to drivers, it makes reporting simpler and also takes care of defect book allocation, tracking reports and rectification analysis.

New exhibitors at Logistics Link

More than 30 companies will be exhibiting at Logistics Link for the first time. Commercial vehicle manufacturer Scania will be showing its extended range of vehicle fleet management services with the introduction of new hardware, software and a GPRS-based communication system. The Microsoft-based open-system architecture employed across the range enables integration with existing traffic and supply management systems, as well as the installation of third-party software. The same hardware can be used throughout a mixed fleet. The Scania Interactor range of on-board computers is being extended through the addition of a new product, the Scania Interactor 300.

Software supplier Four Soft (formerly DCS Transport & Logistics) offers 100 per cent web-centric software solutions to the freight, transport and logistics markets. Modules include: air freight, sea freight, road freight, warehouse management, financial systems, customs and business intelligence reporting. 4S software applications can be run 100 per cent over the internet using a browser.

SIA supplies geographic information system solutions and services based on its own dataMAP GIS product portfolio. dataMAP GIS is a powerful business tool for geographically visualising, managing and analysing both client and demographic information. It is designed as embeddable components, which can be integrated into customers’ own applications.

Significant productivity improvements and cost reductions can be achieved when applied, for example, to logistics, online routeing, transport planning, and ‘where is my nearest?’ applications.

Property is one of the single biggest costs to the logistics industry, but is generally considered as more of a management headache than an opportunity to increase profit. Dohertybaines will be exhibiting its online property web portal at this year’s show. The portal provides the warehouse occupier a cost-effective and efficient method of managing and reducing the cost impact of property on the bottom line.

Delivery specialist Sameday UK was formed in 1996 to provide a professional and comprehensive same day delivery service throughout the UK and Europe. The company specialises in time-sensitive deliveries through a nation-wide network of dedicated franchisees, with a fleet of vehicles which are on standby 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Also exhibiting for the first time will be The Haven Gateway which incorporates one of the UK’s most important clusters of ports, including Felixstowe, the UK’s largest container port, Harwich International, a major east coast ferry port, Ipswich, Harwich Navyard and Mistley.

Mar-Key Marquees has grown from a modest base in Poole to become a substantial company which today supplies many types of temporary building requirements, right across the United Kingdom. continued on page 44

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