Warehouse Navigation System uses RFID to guide lift trucks.
November 26, 2012 -
Jungheinrich® Warehouse Navigation system features RFID transponders to control guided very narrow-aisle lift trucks within aisles of warehouse. Placed in floor at specific distances, system's transponders are used to communicate with RFID reader/writer in lift truck to identify aisle locations and distances. Semi-automatic system is programmed by selecting optimal combination of traveling and lifting. It can also be reconfigured to different layouts in minutes using laptop.
Original Press release
Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America, Inc.
2121 W. Sam Houston Pkwy. N.
Houston, TX, 77043
Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc. (MCFA) Introduces Jungheinrich® Warehouse Navigation System Technology for North America
Productivity-Enhancing Technology to be Exhibited at ProMat 2013 in January
HOUSTON – Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc. (MCFA), a leading provider of forklift trucks in the United States, Canada and Mexico, today introduced the Jungheinrich® Warehouse Navigation system technology to the North American market. The system, which is designed to increase efficiency and productivity in narrow-aisle applications, uses transponder Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to control guided Jungheinrich very narrow-aisle lift trucks within the aisles of a warehouse. Utilizing the system, customers can expect an up to 25 percent increase in productivity, depending on the application environment.
"Jungheinrich's Warehouse Navigation technology is the first of its kind available in North America," said Michael Wiesenegg, product line manager of warehouse systems for MCFA. "The Jungheinrich brand is recognized worldwide for its innovative warehouse material handling products and solutions, and it's exciting that customers in North America now have access to a system that is proven to significantly boost productivity, reduce logistics costs and improve flexibility."
The Warehouse Navigation system is a semi-automatic approach to reaching pallet positions within the aisles of a warehouse. Transponders are placed in the warehouse floor at specific distances and are used to communicate with a RFID reader / writer in the lift truck to identify warehouse aisle locations and distances. Armed with this information and the forklift's height measuring capability, the system knows its location within the aisles at all times and can be programmed to reach specific pallet positions by selecting the most efficient combination of traveling and lifting.
The customer can choose to integrate the system with their existing warehouse management system (WMS), allowing for seamless transmission of orders to the operator’s RF terminal that is installed on the forklift. Once the order is received, the operator can activate the accelerator and the lift truck will drive to the designated pallet position. The lift truck can then store/retrieve a pallet automatically, or stop, allowing the operator to pick from the current pallet location.
Key features and benefits of the Jungheinrich Warehouse Navigation system include:
• Increased productivity by up to 25%. The lift truck selects the optimum combination of driving and lifting to reach a pallet position in the fastest and most efficient way possible. The system also helps reduce product damage, because lifting and putting away of the pallet is controlled by the forklift in most instances, not the operator.
• High order picking and stacking accuracy. When the lift truck arrives at the designated pallet position, a spotlight (optional) illuminates the picking position, showing the operator which side of the aisle and which location to pick from. During pallet retrieval and put-away, the Warehouse Navigation system helps to ensure the correct pallet is moved based on the order received from the customer's WMS.
• Adjustable warehouse layout. Warehouse Navigation is adaptable to future changes in the warehouse structure, allowing for maximum flexibility. While some navigation systems rely on integration of magnets or reflective markers, the use of transponder technology offers complete freedom. If a rack row changes or if more racking bays are added, the transponders are simply reprogrammed and the new configuration is stored in the controller. Changes are made using a laptop, and new layouts can be adjusted within minutes. The transponder is also easy to install and cost effective.
• Improved operator safety and control. The Warehouse Navigation system relies on orders from the customer’s WMS to operate in a semi-automatic mode, selecting the most efficient path based on the items included on the order. However, the operator can deactivate the Warehouse Navigation system to manually operate the truck when needed.
The Jungheinrich Warehouse Navigation system can be used with all rail or wire guided very narrow aisle lift trucks, including the Jungheinrich EKX 410 man-up turret truck, EKX 513-515k series of man-up turret trucks and the EKS 208/308 series of mid- to high-level order pickers.
MCFA will exhibit and demonstrate the Jungheinrich Warehouse Navigation system at ProMat 2013 in Chicago on January 21-24, from exhibit booth 2041.
For more information about the Jungheinrich Warehouse Navigation system, please visit www.jungheinrich-lift.com .
Leading Provider of Forklifts and Warehouse Product Solutions
Jungheinrich® ranks among the world’s leading brands for material handling equipment, specializing in warehousing and narrow aisle forklifts. Through a manufacturing and distribution agreement with Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift America Inc. (MCFA), Jungheinrich forklifts are distributed through MCFA's extensive dealer network in North America. MCFA also manufactures a number of Jungheinrich branded forklifts for distribution in the North American market and supplies parts from four distribution centers located in California, Indiana, Michigan and Pennsylvania. Jungheinrich’s North American product offering includes electric counterbalanced forklifts, narrow aisle lift trucks and walkie forklifts with capacities ranging from 2,000 to 15,400 pounds. For more information on Jungheinrich, please visit Jungheinrich Forklift Trucks, Jungheinrich Forklifts on Facebook, Jungheinrich Forklifts on Twitter, Jungheinrich Forklifts on YouTube, or call 1-877-JH-FORKS (1-877-543-6757).
About ProMat 2013
ProMat 2013 is the premier showcase of material handling, supply chain and logistics solutions in North America. The show is designed to offer productivity solutions and information by showcasing the products and services of over 700 leading material handling and logistics providers.