Modex 2018 Show Wrap Up

Modex 2018, April 9-12, covered more than 300,000 net square feet of exhibit space on two show floors at Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center with 900 exhibiting companies. The expo was co-located with the Georgia Logistics Summit. Here’s a look at some of the booths our editors visited.

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Kardex Remstar launched remote support service 

Kardex Remstar launched a Cloud-based Remote Support platform that continuously monitors the status of installed systems and remotely maintains them as needed.

“There are two key features included in the new support platform,” said Mark Dunaway, EVP of new business. “Remote Assistance manages diagnostics and allows simple maintenance requests to be performed remotely instead of on site to cut downtime; and Remote Analytics, which gives users access to machine data anywhere with the Internet.”

Additionally, the new LR 35 vertical buffer module (VBM) and the Shuttle XP vertical lift module (VLM) are displayed. “The LR 35 is ideal for single-part or small-volume orders,” continued Dunaway, who noted the unit includes a shelf system with automatic bin handling, picking stations and logistics software. “It delivers totes of small items to operators with minimal wait time, speeding up order picking and reducing the amount of floor space required to store items.”

Also new, Access Ready light technology can now be added to the Shuttle XP VLM, alerting operators to the tray’s arrival in the access opening. 

Dematic demonstrated versatility of new modular GTP solution

Dematic introduced a modular, turnkey goods-to-person (GTP) solution to provide a fast and scalable order fulfillment engine.

The solution combines the secure, high-density inventory management benefits of Dematic’s Multishuttle with the compact, high-speed advantages of patented inter-aisle transfer capability. It includes a high-density buffering and sequencing engine with multi-purpose ergonomic workstations used for picking, packing, replenishment, robotic cells or all of the above.

“Industries with high SKU volumes will especially benefit from our enhanced GTP solution,” said Mike Khodl, VP of global solution management. “Its dynamic, compact design manages inventory accurately and delivers items to pickers quickly. This allows our customers to extend order cutoff times, speed up shipping and delivery windows, and even enables them to expand into new service areas.”

Khodl said ROI is typically less than three years. The modular design lowers initial cost, he said, and the solution’s scalability improves flexibility. 

Honeywell Intelligrated’s Momentum WES connects orders, automation and labor

Honeywell Intelligrated offered a live demonstration of Momentum, its new software platform for distribution centers that streamlines and simplifies complex e-commerce fulfillment operations.

The warehouse execution system (WES) brings together automated equipment, workflows, orders and labor in a unified platform. The system provides e-commerce fulfillment, store replenishment and wholesale distribution center operations with shortened order cycle times, improved order accuracy and faster deliveries.

“Many of today’s warehouse execution systems are a patchwork of custom software and control solutions, so we’ve taken a vastly different, clean-sheet approach that prioritizes stability and simplicity to enable a Connected Distribution Center,” said Pieter Krynauw, president of Honeywell Intelligrated.

Krynauw also emphasized improvements to the company’s Lifecycle Support Services. Hardware-agnostic cybersecurity and data collection have enabled a new approach to service.

“You can’t have an army of people maintaining and fixing such complex systems,” Krynauw said. “You need systems that are smart enough to heal themselves.” 

New reach truck, VR training simulator at Raymond

Showcasing the interconnectivity between the digital and physical worlds, The Raymond Corp. highlighted its Reach-Fork truck series. The vehicles are now integrated with technologies and scalable telematics to enhance the operator experience and increase productivity.

“With integrated trucks, warehouses and DCs can obtain real-time information—from operator performance to certification tracking to operational efficiencies—helping achieve maximum productivity and visibility,” said Michael Field, CEO.

Introduced at Modex, Raymond’s new high-capacity Reach-Fork trucks reach an industry-leading 542 inches and lift up to 4,500 pounds for increased productivity and storage utilization.

Also displayed, the Raymond Virtual Reality Simulator has been updated to offer reach truck instructional modules, providing advanced, hands-on instruction to improve operator proficiency and build confidence. 

SSI Schaefer debuted shuttle, highlighted VLM and WMS

SSI Schaefer expanded its shuttle portfolio for small load carriers with the new SSI Flexi Shuttle. The modular single-level shuttle system handles a wide variety of stored goods with a storage capacity of up to 110 pounds.

The unique feature of this system is the adaptability for storage location sizes. This feature works by having flexible positioning within the racking system, which efficiently stores a broad spectrum of load unit dimensions, up to 860 x 680 mm (33.85 x 26.77 inches). The design allows installation at any position throughout the storage aisles and combines automated storage, buffering and sequencing. Moving at speeds up to 4 m/s (13 ft/s), the shuttle also works in deep freezers.

“In comparison to conventional applications, the SSI Flexi Shuttle does not rely on fixed-allocation storage positions within the racking system,” said Peter Berlik, technical CEO. “Paired with intelligent IT strategies, the rack design allows size-independent, fully automatic, space-optimized storage, and therefore offers operators previously unheard of possibilities.” 

Zebra displayed latest mobile technology

A leader in rugged mobile computers, bar code scanners and bar code printers enhanced with software and services to enable real-time enterprise visibility, Zebra Technologies demonstrated its latest innovations.

The MC3300 handheld computer series is an Android-based computer fortified with Mobility DNA to help simplify the deployment and application development required to transition from legacy Windows-based mobile investments. Available in multiple form factors, the device provides powerful and easy-to-use advanced data capture features that can scan 1D/2D bar codes in any condition.

Zebra also displayed the LI3608-ER/LI3678-ER 1D Ultra-Rugged Scanner. Designed to capture virtually any 1D bar code from as close as 2 in./5.1 cm to as far as 56 ft./17.1 m away, this versatile device allows workers to capture codes in hand as well as on the top of warehouse racks. 

Rite-Hite debuted two new products

Rite-Hite showcased two new products at the show. The Direct Drive HVLS Fan and the Trailer Stabilizer round out the manufacturer’s product line.

The HVLS fan comes in five sizes (8 feet to 24 feet) and is powered by a direct drive that requires no oil—a feature that makes it attractive for “clean” warehouse and DC environments, such as food or pharmaceuticals. Users can control up to 24 of the HVLS fans—which will be available for sale in early-July—with a single control box.

Rite-Hite’s new Trailer Stabilizer rolls into place and can be raised and lowered with a crank. Featuring two support legs, this stable, mobile product is rated for 80 tons. Rite-Hite also demonstrated the Dok-Commander System and a new graphic user interface (GUI) control panel at its booth.

Knapp introduced new shuttle technology, operational optimization software

A new shuttle AS/RS—the OSR Shuttle Evo—debuted in a press conference led by Kevin Reader, director of marketing and business development at Knapp.

Completely redesigned, the shuttle packs more functions and greater energy efficiency into a smaller size, enabling it to travel faster, increase system density and reduce a facility’s carbon footprint.

Ideal for either Greenfield or existing buildings, “the shuttle structure now integrates the lifts and conveyor queuing, dramatically increasing its flexibility and adaptability by making it a much simpler process to add on workstations for e-commerce, automated case handling and palletizing, or quality control, Reader said. “It also now travels as high as 130 feet and distances of 650 feet, a 25% improvement over the previous models.”

Knapp also showcased its new redPILOT software that serves as a control panel for senior managers seeking to leverage Big Data, predictive modeling, analytics, Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) to optimize warehouse and DC operations. 

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