AS/R Systems, Inc.

Pharmaceutical Company's material storage requirements consist of standard media formats (DVDs, CDs, etc) of varying sizes stored in bar-coded totes. No data storage requirements were required on Magic Warehouse (MW) only an enhancement to extend the WMS (Warehouse Management System) ability to track item and tote relationships. The application was configured using serial communication directing a POD of horizontal storage carousels with execution requests performed through ODBC connection to client’s DBMS. Working directly with client’s IT resources AS/R was able to provide seamless integration with initial table/field definitions while client created tables and defined import scripts to MW. A USB "keyboard wedge" scanner attached for barcode scanning was also provided to simplify end user input. All end user access and security tracked in MW using standard Windows based security. Batch picking methods were derived from location and storage based on Host’s storage logic.

Leveraging off existing DBMS storage capability allowed MW to focus on tracking totes, validation of put-away and picking through user friendly interfaces. ASR also provided a simple labeling bar-code solution, using a unique system of splitting each bin into two totes for management of pulling and loading totes on carousel. The Host system provides MW with Batch number; Tote number and Item barcode number are scanned for verification and text description by material handler. To aid the user in the picking process, a workstation monitor displays appropriate cueing information and a Light-Tree illuminates location and number on carousel.

Order processing begins when operator picks item from tote, scans to ensure validity, and places it in a collection box. MW updates database table with user, date and time as each item is scanned. At the end of (or during) each batch, staff match items in collection box to Host orders and remove them from further processing. MW tracks movement of all totes on the carousel (adding, removal tote and movement to new location). The process is completed by scanning both the tote and the carousel location to maximize accuracy.

Health care products distributor that supports five regional hospitals and many related clinics. System includes four 70 bin carousels, with light trees, sort bar, customized pick matrix for batch order picking, off carousel “pick to light” on carton flow, Very Narrow Aisle (VNA) Drexel™ SLT-22, Atlet™ orderpicker, full WES software with RF support of off carousel picking. This system (installed fall 2004) is credited with reducing supply chain operating costs by 30% + based upon application of “state of the art” technologies including carousel, VNA, WES and RF. Benefits include 40% labor reduction to operate the DC, elimination of roughly half of ward delivery staff through improved processing and accumulation methods, increased overall cubic capacity within the DC itself and a hospital wide reduction of materials required within the supply chain by 33%.

Electronic chip equipment manufacturer. Combined carousel batch order “each picking” presentation methods with integrated order processing file handoff while consolidating several operations into a single smaller space. The installed system delivered improved overall order picking labor performance, reduced labor costs, increased order production capacity and resulting in closing a redundant facility.

A turnkey “design/build” storage system for a manufacturer and distributor of specialized measuring devices. An initial Pro-FILE™ was applied to develop an overall facility strategy. The initial solution installed in early 2001, included three (3) AS/R Rebuilt Carousels™, Magic Warehouse LT™ and an elevating work platform. Capacity was doubled by the new configuration within half the previous DC’s size while reducing labor 66%. A fourth carousel was added four years later, demonstrating the system’s modularity ref: capacity expansion.

Provider of Vendor Managed Inventory Services. Highly automated, multi pod, pick and pass carousel system with three (3) horizontal carousels supported by special methods developed jointly with the client. The solution consolidated operations from three areas into a tighter offsite space, freed thousands of square feet for badly needed new production, reduced labor costs by a large percentage and combined several steps into a single “pick and toss”, round robin style operation.

AS/R Canada

Photo Products Distributor supporting 32+ stores. Turnkey design and build service starting with initial design (Profile™ service), followed by system installation, transition management, materials slotting, move support and host business system integration. System includes four 40 bin carousels, with light trees, sort bar, customized pick matrix for batch order picking and carousel “pick to light”, Very Narrow Aisle (VNA) Drexel™ SLT-22, full WMS software with RF support of off carousel picking. System is credited with allowing the customer to double retail store support within a tight floor plan while decreasing labor and adding no new building capacity. This customer moved to a new facility in early 2009, expanding the system to two (2) pods of carousels, with conveyorized takeaway and special methods that completely eliminated a third shift of 12 staff.

AS/R was commissioned by this hardware products distributor to design and implement a new DC designed to support the growing and specialized needs of several big box hardware retailers. System includes two 40 bin carousels, light tree, sort bar, conveyor system integrating workflow with carton flow storage system, and narrow aisle forklift equipment. The system (installed summer 2003) supports specialized needs for item picking and ASN demands by creating a single in-line pick, pack and label process.

Specialty contract manufacturing service uses high-density vertical storage and retrieval concepts to support shop floor production operations. Strategic location of high-density vertical carousels increased facility capcity and reduced the number of “touches” required to kit, move assemble materials by strategically placing the require WIP adjacent to the user client workstations. Overall system capacity was also greatly enhanced by a re-design of the receiving and related materials operations using specialized rack laid out in a narrow aisle configuration supported by three wheel narrow aisle forklift equipment.