Archive for Warehouse Automation

Maximizing MHE: The “Automation-Aware” WMS

Businesses trust material handling equipment (MHE) providers for automated guided vehicles (AVG), conveyors, robotics, sortation, storage and beyond. Top to bottom, material handling manufacturers outfit warehouses with the latest and greatest. This goes beyond automation hardware—on the back page of a MHE provider’s RFP, you can often find a warehouse control system (WCS) bundled into the deal. A prevailing thought is if the manufacturer made the hardware, they must have the software to go with […]

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How to Buy Your First Autonomous Robot

Take a calculated approach to robotics procurement and you’ll stand the best chance of successfully aligning it with your company’s mission, values, and future plans. In Robots in the Supply Chain: The Perfect Employee? Merril Douglas paints a picture of a time in the near future when robots and humans will work side-by-side to help companies gain speed, increase accuracy, cut costs, and handle the grunt work. “We’re sitting in the middle of a perfect storm […]

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Remember Webvan? They Weren’t Wrong – Just Early

It’s funny how some trends seem to go “full circle.” In 1999, everybody thought they could pick the next big thing. Then after the dot.com bubble burst, it seemed like everybody distanced themselves from their “visionary” pasts. I recall a brief discussion I had around 2002 with a self-described “internet guy.” He commented about the online grocery company Webvan’s business model with the statement “I don’t know what they were thinking – I mean, if you double-bag […]

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NextShift Robotics, An Autonomous Mobile Robot that Optimizes the Picking Process

313 million dollars has been invested by venture capital companies in developing autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) solutions in the last several years. ARC’s recent global market study on this market shows it to be a very rapidly growing market. An autonomous mobile robot is a vehicle that requires no change to a facilities infrastructure to implement and operate. Often, these vehicles are led around a facility and then create a map of the facility that […]

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Warehouse Robots Enable a Digital Transformation

Lufthansa Technik Logistik Services began their digital transformation three years ago.. Because about half of this company’s 2017 revenues are related to warehousing services, several of their digital projects have been related to improving efficiency in their warehouses. This case study describes their approach to testing out mobile logistics robots.

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Robots with Swarm Intelligence

Robots with swarm intelligence. Austrian headquartered Agilox designs and manufactures mobile logistics robots that use “swarm intelligence” to intelligently navigate through warehouses and factories, delivering pallets and totes where they are needed. This article discusses this technology.

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Voice – The Interface Between Supply Chain Tech and Humans

It’s the era of the new consumer. We must adapt supply chains rapidly to meet customer expectations. Trends like reverse logistics, same-day-delivery and mobility result in new business models, stressed logistics systems and deconsolidating networks. We’re also in the midst of a shrinking talent pool. Competing with rising wages and attractive employment alternatives for this generation is pivotal in landing the top talent. How do we handle this? By evolving our operations with the tools […]

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Manhattan Associate’s Warehouse Management Solution Changes the Rules of Automation

Manhattan Associates made significant enhancements to their warehouse solution. They have changed the rules of automation, employed significant forms of optimization not currently used in warehouse management systems (WMS), and greatly improved the ability to fulfill e-commerce orders.

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Warehouse Automation Global Market Update

ARC Advisory Group released its updated Warehouse Automation & Control (WAC) market study last week. This research is an evaluation of the market with detailed analysis of the 2017 base year and a five-year forecast through 2022. I would like to take this opportunity to communicate some of the prominent themes I observed during the research process. 2017 – A Stellar Year The market’s growth in 2017 was substantially greater than I had expected. In fact, I […]

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Orchestrating the Future of Order Fulfillment

It seems no matter where we look these days, robots and other uses of artificial intelligence are not hard to find. From our cars and smart appliances to Alexa and Siri, the rise of AI technology has permeated our daily lives and is changing the way we operate. Warehouses and distribution centers are no exception. In recent years we’ve seen a dramatic increase in intelligent automation across the supply chain, a necessity to keep up […]

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