Updated AS/RS offers fresh start for Dole

Proprietary system revamped from one end of aisle to the other.

By ·

The Dole Fresh Vegetables location in Marina, Calif., has a nine-aisle unit-load automated storage and retrieval system (AS/RS). Due to the age of the installation and original equipment, elements of the system were outdated, unreliable and causing downtime. Despite a largely proprietary system, the company was able to find a supplier that could update the
AS/RS—reducing costs and errors while increasing uptime and performance.

Before the upgrade, the company faced widespread problems. As the once advanced system aged, proprietary controls were becoming more difficult to maintain and caused severe limitations on future system capability. Maintenance groups were spending too much time and money troubleshooting equipment problems like maintaining the DC motors and obsolete DC drives. Potential upgrades were complicated, required operational interruptions, and only limited vendors had the ability to perform them.

New hardware and software including end-of-aisle units and wireless tablet PCs supplemented new motors, drives and laser positioning systems. The supplier offered current, off-the-shelf technology that is non-proprietary, proven and reliable, making future modifications and upgrade requirements easier and less costly to implement.

Maintenance costs were reduced, while improving Dole’s ability to maintain the AS/RS independently. The system reliability increased and uptime improved due to the elimination of positioning errors that were occurring in the old control system, the removal of the obsolete components, and the ability to monitor the system on-line in real time. Improved flexibility and positioning accuracy gave Dole the ability to fine-tune individual storage locations. In addition, the serviceable life of the equipment, components and overall system was extended.

Retrotech
866-915-2777
http://www.retrotech.com

More Storage coverage.

More from Modern’s 2012 Casebook


About the Author

Josh Bond, Contributing Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.

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!

Latest Whitepaper
Is Your DC Ready for E-commerce Growth? Here’s How to Handle More SKUs and Inventory Turns
The rise of e-commerce and multi-channel fulfillment has caused distribution centers (DCs) to experience ever-growing numbers of stock-keeping units (SKUs) and more inventory turns, up to an average of nine in 2015.
Download Today!
From the August 2016 Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
5 Emerging Technologies Enabling Competitive Advantage for Distribution
Come hear about the latest in each-picking robotics, co-bots, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, sensors, drones and droids that are enabling competitive advantage for distribution.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
The data-driven lift truck
Now that manufacturers and distributors are using the data from their automated systems to drive...
Destination Maternity: Destination Automation
Running short of space in its old facility, Destination Maternity Corp. built a new, highly...

Hibbett Sports: Faster, Flexible and Efficient
A high-speed conveyor and sortation system at Hibbett Sports’ Alabama distribution center speeds...
Necessity is the mother of invention at Quiet Logistics
Faced with the loss of a robotic pick solution, Quiet Logistics invented its own robots. Are they...