MODEX 2012 marked the first appearance of Swisslog's SmartCarrier storage and retrieval system in North America. The system, designed to handle high-throughput bins, cartons, or trays and high-turnover inventory, is typically used in goods-in-buffer systems, pick buffers for high-speed small case or goods-to-person piece picking, and dispatch buffers and sorting systems, as well as for consolidation.
Swisslog says SmartCarrier offers several improvements over shuttle-based systems. For one thing, several goods carriers can operate in a single storage level. Up to four carriers can simultaneously store and retrieve goods on the same level. For another, carriers can move outside the rack on external conveyors or overhead tracks to pick buffers and packing stations, for instance.
SmartCarrier's innovative, energy-efficient "super-capacitor" concept regenerates power as modules lift and lower and provides a burst of energy when needed. The vehicles' light weight contributes to energy efficiency, and their five-piece modular construction makes maintenance fast and easy. Swisslog says its efforts to reduce complexity, weight, and energy usage have allowed it to keep SmartCarrier's price reasonable.
Swisslog also announced several new customer installation deals, including a $25 million SmartCarrier order for Hama, a European supplier of electronic accessories; an AutoStore goods-to-person order fulfillment solution for the U.S. healthcare products distributor Medline Industries; and a combined order fulfillment and ASRS system for Publix Super Markets' new distribution center in Lakeland, Fla.
For more information, go to www.swisslog.com/modex.