Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!


Automated storage takes to the skies

Vertical lift modules save space and improve efficiency at airline maintenance facility.
By Josh Bond, Associate Editor
October 22, 2011

At the ExpressJet Airlines maintenance facility at Newark Liberty International Airport, a vertical lift module (VLM) has reduced the amount of space required by traditional shelving and has helped the operation more efficiently handle slow- and medium-moving inventory items.

The facility stores a range of parts for aircraft service and maintenance, from small fasteners to large air valves. About 3,000 parts that workers don’t retrieve on a regular basis are now stored in the VLMs, while fast-moving items have stayed on the remaining shelving.

The VLM the company installed is an enclosed high-density storage and retrieval system that consists of two columns of trays in the front and in the back.

A robotic extractor delivers trays to an ergonomically positioned work counter according to touch-screen inputs. VLMs take advantage of unused overhead space to reduce the amount of floor space required by traditional shelving by up to 85%. Integrated software also monitors inventory and enables inventory optimization.

When storing items, the VLM’s control automatically directs every tray to the least amount of vertical space necessary for storage.

The enclosed design of the vertical lift modules also helps maintain the cleanliness of the parts more effectively than using the shelving, where slow moving parts often collected dust. The system’s modular design allows it to be disassembled and reassembled and made shorter or taller. This makes moves or changes less costly as well as more efficient.

Sapient Automation
877-451-4044
http://www.getsapient.com

More Storage coverage.

More from Modern’s 2012 Casebook

About the Author

image
Josh Bond
Associate Editor

Josh Bond is an associate editor to Modern. Josh was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and contributing editor, has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce.


Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

Join Associate Editor Josh Bond and lift truck industry training expert, Jim Shephard share all the findings of Modern's annual Lift Truck User Survey. During this webcast, you'll receive detailed insights into users' practices around procuring, utilizing and maintaining their fleets.

Having grown from a local tool and die business established in 1962, company becomes 20th certified robot integrator.

Company celebrates 15th year on the NASDAQ since IPO in 1999.

Open Sky has already completed more than 270 supply chain software projects for clients in various industries.

Name change to take effect on Sept. 1; no changes planned for product line.



© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA