Schaefer Systems International (SSI Schaefer) presents the LogiMat, a new range of vertical lift modules that facilitate design flexibility in the storage and picking of small parts.
From its rack and pinion drive, to its scalable controls architecture and ergonomic picking design, LogiMat provides a powerful and efficient solution for manufacturers looking to improve operational performance, cut picking costs and consolidate floor space in their finished goods warehousing, small parts inventory and tool cribs.
A vast majority of small parts inventory in manufacturing facilities, large and small, utilise a person-to-goods model for fulfilment, many operating on a manual paper-based system to prepare assembly line kitting requests, ship spare parts, and store finished orders in their warehouse. In such a traditional inventory model, pickers walk or move a floor truck to the rack and floor locations to manually pick parts or finished goods.
However, with the quantity of parts continuing to increase, coupled with the growing push to streamline manufacturing costs, the traditional person-to-goods inventory model has come under serious challenge.
Manufacturing executives are increasingly looking for more efficient solutions to minimise the amount of wasted time between picks and increase the number of orders processed per picker. Manual picking is a highly labour-intensive function, and can provide significant cost-savings when automated. Not surprisingly, many manufacturing executives are embracing a goods-to-person fulfilment approach as a solution to achieve more efficiency in their picking processes – moving the inventory to the picker who is comparatively more stationary, utilising advanced technology to facilitate the inventory storage and movement.
The LogiMat vertical lift module (VLM), manufactured by SSI Schaefer is one such automated system based on a goods-to-person concept: Incoming goods are put into the high-density, automated, carousel storage VLM. As orders for parts or for shipping are required to be filled, the items are automatically retrieved from the storage system and brought to the picker at an ergonomic receipt station, where items are then picked from partitioned drawers. Since the picker does not have to walk, the focus at the pick station is on ergonomics and high productivity.
One of the most advanced and versatile VLMs available, LogiMat provides a suite of capabilities that deliver a six- to ten-fold increase in order picking speeds, reduced picking errors, and a compact footprint.
Key features of the LogiMat vertical lift module include a rack and pinion drive used for movement of the elevator and extractor, providing a more positive movement, better tray stability and less servicing compared to chain- and belt-driven designs; opening height adjusting to the worker to ensure an ergonomically correct operating height; tilt mechanism allowing for a reduction of reach depth, facilitating ergonomic removal of goods; LogiPointer laser pointer system, assisted by a centrally located touchscreen to identify the location in the drawer of the part to be picked; electrically-driven locking door providing security for storing valuable goods; scalable controls software; optimised tray positioning and batch order picking; flexible tray and compartment options with variable tray dimensions and weight capacities; and 24/7/365 worldwide service and support maximising operational reliability and uptime of the system.