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Accumulation Conveyor: How to Choose Zero or Minimum Pressure

April 26, 2022

Accumulation conveyor system with open top cartons moving on the line.

Accumulation systems let you adjust drive pressure on the product to a minimum—or eliminate it completely. This is useful when you have to accumulate a long line of cartons without damaging any of them.

Accumulation is ideal for applications like machine feeding, case sealers or shipping area buffers. When integrated correctly, accumulation increases throughput and gives you precise control of your conveyor line, the products on it and the time they spend in various stages.

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The Anatomy of a Pick Module

April 12, 2022

Pick module with carton flow on two levels in an apparel distribution center.

Pick modules support a range of warehouse activities, but their primary role is to increase the speed and space efficiency of order fulfillment operations. Configured with racks (which are usually the support structure), conveyors, flow storage, shelves and modular storage, they let you design the storage, fulfillment and picking strategy that fits your needs. Some pick modules are simple — really, just a shelf-supported mezzanine. Others combine automation and WMS systems for full systems integration.

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Posted in Automation, Mezzanines, Order Picking & Fulfillment, Organization| No Comments »

Are AGVs Right for You?

March 17, 2022

driverless forklift AGV loading empty pallets.

AGVs–automated guided vehicles–are mainstream. You see them in increasingly diverse applications and functioning in areas of the supply chain that may have seemed impossible a few years ago. Especially as e-commerce continues to accelerate and consumers demand more and faster shipments, companies must innovate to meet demand. AGV technology is ready for real-world use and can provide the answer, but is it a good fit for you?

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Posted in Automation, Material Handling, ROI, Warehousing| No Comments »

New Rules for Industrial Automation ROI

January 4, 2022

Automated guided vehicles can run independently to deliver picking and storage options to warehouse employees.
In October 2019, I wrote this article on ROI factors for automation projects. That was just over two years ago, but the world is–to understate the case–a different place now. We endured a relentless Covid-19 pandemic that still persists. The “great resignation” has accelerated. Ecommerce demand was already ascendant, but is on an even faster track. The labor pool got shallower and continues to contract. What should we consider when we look at these projects in 2022 and beyond?

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Posted in Automation, Manufacturing, Order Picking & Fulfillment, ROI| No Comments »

When is an ASRS System a Good Fit?

November 18, 2021

Muratec unit load pallet handling ASRS system in action.

Automated storage and retrieval systems are becoming more commonly deployed in today’s modern distribution, manufacturing and warehousing facilities because they make more sense than ever in an age of escalating demand and declining labor availability. Is space tight? What are the error rates throughout fulfillment? What kind of space issues do you see moving forward? What are the safety and ergonomic concerns?

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Posted in Automation, E-Commerce, Order Picking & Fulfillment, ROI| No Comments »

Cisco-Eagle Promotes Eric Zuniga to Applications Specialist

October 14, 2021

Cisco-Eagle's Eric Zuniga

Cisco-Eagle has promoted Eric Zuniga to Applications Specialist according to Systems Integration Manager Bryan Gauger.

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Posted in Automation, ESOP, News| No Comments »

A Guide to Shoe Sorter Applications

October 5, 2021

shoe sorter conveyor system in a distribution center

Conveyor systems with shoe sorters are the go-to method for carton or parcel handling divert applications, but aren’t limited to just those types of loads. Shoe sorters are gentle with the product, fast and reliable with lower maintenance than other sortation options. What are the best applications for shoe sorter conveyors?

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Posted in Automation, Conveyor, Cross Docking, E-Commerce| No Comments »

Machine Guarding For Maximum Protection

September 9, 2021

machine guarding wire partition

Automated equipment was a fast-growing sector before the pandemic, but is gathering more momentum and acceptance as companies face labor shortages and increased demand. Forging a more efficient environment means embracing automation–it’s inevitable.

With more instances of machine and man working together happening every day in a warehouse, one factor any facility wants to target is keeping your workers safe around this new automation. While education and training are important routes for this, implementing safety systems also adds protection. One way to not only protect your workers but also your investment is by using machine guarding systems.

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Specifying High-Performance Parcel Handling Conveyor Solutions

September 2, 2021

parcel conveyor system in a warehouse fulfillment operation.

The pressure on companies of all types to continuously ship faster and more efficiently has grown, particularly in the age of increased e-commerce, an extremely tight labor market and Covid-19 restrictions. Increased demand also affects retail distribution as companies work to develop effective delivery channels outside traditional ship-to-store.

The core mission of these operations is parcel shipping–an old art with new twists.

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Posted in Automation, Conveyor, Order Picking & Fulfillment| No Comments »

Vanishing Point – Finding Warehouse Workers In The New Normal

July 20, 2021

warehouse workers walking and evaluating facility

As we navigate through a vaccination-ramped up world, many potential workers that either had tough choices to make or were left behind are now in demand by virtually all industries. The labor pool has shrunk, and many companies are finding the acquiring of talent a massive headache. Those roles within a warehouse that would otherwise be much easier to fill are requiring effort and enticement never needed before to bring in potential employees.

Warehouse employment is at an all-time high, so how can you sell your facility as an interesting and exciting place to work at? We review some options.

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Posted in Automation, Covid-19, Warehousing| No Comments »

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