TGW Systems has begun using complex mathematical algorithms to help design customers' material handling systems. Called "Logistics Genome Mapping," the technique grew out a corporate initiative to better manage risk, says Kevin Thuet, director of systems development for the company.
He says an effort to map all possible picking solutions for customers led to as many as 21.5 billion configurations. When the company added in all possible customer variations and potential changes, that number grew to orders of magnitude higher.
The company has modified that mapping technique so that the company can now use customer data to come up with a system design that offers the highest probability of success, he says. "[The technique] is guiding system designers down the right path," he says.
TGW is currently using the technique to develop a major retailer's system design.