Edeka’s logistics centre is growing

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Witron Logistik + Informatik is responsible for the installation of the logistics system which has a mechanised warehouse and picking system order picking machinery (OPM).

Some 20,000 articles consisting of fresh, frozen and dry goods are stored in the warehouse.

Up to 85 per cent of the dry goods range can be picked automatically. Witron additionally integrates the dynamic warehouse and tote picking module DPS (dynamic picking system) with pick-by-light technology as well as pick-by-voice applications within the conventionally operated warehouse areas.

Construction of the halls for the dry goods, which are 31 metres high, has been completed according to schedule. The installed OPM system including the high bay pallet warehouse takes up a good portion of the nearly 20,000 sq m of floor space. More than 40,000 pallet locations are available within the automatic high bay warehouse, which serves as replenishment warehouse within the OPM process.

Seven automatic stacker cranes provide six directly connected and automatic de-palletising stations with currently needed warehouse pallets.

After separating the pallets into single collies (cases or trade units), they are physically merged with trays at six stations.

The trays are buffered in a buffer warehouse that functionally resembles an automated small-parts warehouse until entering the picking process. To use the capacity of the small-parts warehouse in an optimal way, storage is carried out double and quadruple deep.

The in and outbound storing of trays is carried out by stacker cranes as well, which supply the trays in the sequence given by the software system to 24 fully-automated picking machines, the case order machines (COM).

Product analyses within the planning phase have shown that, by using the OPM technology, 85 per cent of the Edeka dry goods range can be picked automatically.

At peak days, more than 240,000 collies are mechanically picked. The remaining 15 per cent are covered by the dynamic warehouse and picking system DPS that works with pick-by-light technology.

An additional small-parts warehouse provides 60,000 tote locations for the DPS. Integrated within the small-parts warehouse the picking workstations are located in two picking aisles. Picking will be done from totes as well as from pallet locations.

The system-controlled DPS provides the articles that are needed for current orders. Totes that will not be picked any more in a foreseeable time are pushed back in the flow channel by the picker.

Stacker cranes pick up these totes, re-store them into the small-parts warehouse and provide these empty channels with other articles.

The result of this dynamic process is up to 70 per cent shorter pick paths, since the pick front is consolidated so the pick performance increases significantly. The racking and the mechanics have already been fully installed in the DPS area.

Apart from the automated warehouse and picking areas, Witron will also provide system technology for the fresh goods area that will store, not only dairy products, but also fruits and vegetables on a 14,000 sq m floor. This area will be equipped with a pick-by-voice system which is currently successfully integrated in the warehouses in Moers and Meckenheim.

More than 50 pickers will be using this system. The same system applies for a bulky goods warehouse that is directly connected to the inbound area for the dry goods range. 15 pallet conveyor lanes and five empty pallet stations have been installed in the inbound area. The dispatch buffer with a capacity of 2,500 roll cages is located in the outbound area.

The warehouse control system is currently being integrated into the inbound and outbound area, the pallet high bay warehouse and the DPS area. In parallel, the controls are integrated in the already installed COM machines and in the buffer warehouse.

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