How to design an automated storage and retrieval system?

Automated storage and retrieval system(ASRS) is the emergence of new concepts in logistics and warehousing. The use of automated storage and retrieval system equipment can realize the rationalization of the upper levels of the warehouse, access automation, and operation simplicity; the automated warehouse is the current high level of technology form. As we all know, although the automated storage warehouse has many advantages, the cost is not low, so enterprises in the planning of ASRS should be cautious. So, how to plan the automated storage and retrieval system? Let’s find out.

ASRS manufacturer
ASRS manufacturer

First, the design of the preparatory work before

1, to understand the construction of the warehouse site conditions, including meteorology, terrain, geological conditions, ground bearing capacity, wind and snow load, earthquake conditions and other environmental impacts.

2, in the overall design of the automated warehouse systems, mechanical, structural, electrical, civil engineering and other multi-professional intersection, mutual constraints, which require third-party logistics companies in the design must take into account the needs of various professions. For example, the movement accuracy of the machinery is to be selected according to the accuracy of the structure made and the settlement accuracy of the civil construction.

3, to develop a third-party logistics enterprise on the storage system investment, staffing and other plans, to determine the size of the storage system and the degree of mechanization and automation.

4, To investigate and understand the conditions of other aspects related to the third-party logistics enterprise warehousing system, for example, the source of goods, linking the traffic situation of the depot, the packaging of goods, the method of handling goods, the final destination of goods and means of transport, etc…

ASRS system
ASRS system

Second, the choice and planning of the warehouse

The choice and layout of the storage site for the storage system infrastructure investment, logistics costs, labor conditions, etc. have important significance. Taking into account urban planning, and the overall operation of the third-party logistics enterprises, automated storage and retrieval system is best selected close to ports, docks, freight stations and other transportation hubs, near the production of raw material production, or near the main sales market, which can greatly reduce the cost of third-party logistics enterprises. The address of the warehouse is reasonable for environmental protection, urban planning, etc. also has a certain impact. For example, choosing to establish an automated storage warehouse in a traffic-constrained commercial area, on the one hand, and the busy business environment is not coordinated, on the other hand, to spend a high price to buy land. Most importantly, due to traffic restrictions, only every day in the middle of the night to deliver goods, which is obviously extremely unreasonable.

ASRS factory
ASRS factory

Third, determine the form of the warehouse, the mode of operation and mechanical equipment parameters

The form of the warehouse needs to be determined on the basis of the investigation of the variety of goods in the warehouse. Generally use the unit cargo format warehouse. If the storage of a single variety of goods or few, and the goods in larger quantities, you can use gravity racks or other forms of through warehouse. According to the process requirements of access (whole unit or piecemeal access) to determine whether they need for stacking picking operations if the need for picking operations, and then determine the way picking operations.

In the automated warehouse, there is a way of operation is often used, which is the so-called “free space” approach, that is, the goods can be near the warehouse, especially for frequent access and extra-long, extra-heavy goods, should be as far as possible in the arrival and delivery of goods near the location of operations, which can not only shorten the access time but also save the handling costs.

Automated storage is used in a variety of mechanical equipment, generally including lane stacker cranes, continuous conveyors, high-level racks, a high degree of automation and automatic guided vehicle. In the overall design of the warehouse, according to the size of the warehouse, the variety of goods, access frequency, etc. choose the most suitable mechanical equipment and determine the main parameters of these devices.


Fourth, determine the form and specifications of the unit of the good

As the premise of the automated storage warehouse is unitized handling, so determining the form, size and weight of the cargo unit is a very important issue. It will affect the third-party logistics enterprises to the warehouse investment and will affect the entire warehouse system’s equipped, facilities and other issues. Therefore, in order to reasonably determine the form, size and weight of the cargo unit, all possible cargo unit forms and specifications should be listed and reasonable choices made based on the results of surveys and statistics. For those goods of special shape and size or very heavy, they can be handled separately.

Fifth, Determine the library capacity (including cache area)

Library capacity is the number of cargo units that can be accommodated in the warehouse at the same time, which is a very important parameter for automated warehouse systems. Because the inventory cycle will be affected by many unexpected factors, the volume of inventory spikes sometimes greatly exceeds the actual warehouse capacity of the automated warehouse. In addition, some automated storage and retrieval systems only consider the capacity of the rack area, while ignoring the area of the cache area, the result of the cache area is not enough, so the goods out of the rack area, and the goods outside the warehouse can not enter.

China ASRS factory
China ASRS factory

Sixth, the warehouse area and the allocation of other areas

As the total area is a certain, and many third-party logistics enterprises in the construction of automated warehouse systems only pay attention to the office, and experiments (including research and development) area, but ignored the warehouse area, thus creating this situation, that is, in order to meet the needs of the library capacity, had to develop to space to meet the requirements. But the higher the rack, the higher the purchase cost of machinery and equipment and operating costs. In addition, because the optimal logistics route within the automated warehouse systems is linear, the warehouse design is often limited by the flat area, resulting in its own logistics route circuitous (often s-shaped, or even mesh), which will increase many unnecessary inputs and trouble.

Seven, the matching of personnel and equipment

No matter how high the degree of automation of the automated racking systems, the specific operation still requires a certain amount of manual labor, so the number of staff is appropriate. Insufficient personnel will reduce the efficiency of the warehouse, too much and will cause waste. An automated racking system uses a large number of advanced equipment, so the quality of personnel requirements are relatively high, and the quality of personnel can not keep up, the same will reduce the throughput capacity of the warehouse. Third-party logistics companies need to recruit specialized personnel and special training for them.

custom ASRS system
custom ASRS system

Eighth, the transmission of system data

Because the data transmission path is not smooth or data redundancy and other reasons, will cause the system data transmission speed is slow, or even can not be transmitted phenomenon, so consider the automated racking warehouse and the third-party logistics enterprises to consider the problem of information transfer between the upper and lower management system.

Nine, the overall operational capacity

Automated racking warehouse upstream, downstream, and the coordination of its internal subsystems, there is a barrel effect of the problem, that is, the shortest piece of wood to determine the capacity of the barrel. Some warehouses use a lot of high-tech products, and a variety of facilities and equipment is also very complete, but due to the coordination between the subsystems, compatibility is not good, resulting in the overall operational capacity than expected much worse.

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