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More space for partial automation

The specifications for automated, rail-guided storage and retrieval systems are quite clear: people, forklifts or autonomous industrial trucks have no access in these aisles. This presents companies with space problems unless they want to abandon previous warehouse structures. Or continue to need them. We have therefore thought beyond the classic storage and retrieval machine. With Aviator® technology, storage systems can be placed practically anywhere in the company. The Aviator® does not require a guide rail on the floor, which means that warehouse areas can still be accessed and driven over.

Unlike a floor-bound storage and retrieval machine, the Aviator® travels with its travel and lifting gear on the top level of a rack storage system. All storage locations on this level remain unchanged. Ropes lower and lift the load handling device within the rack aisle. With the help of our intelligent automation technology, the racking compartments and channels are controlled with the usual precision. As with our rail-guided SRMs, telescopic forks for single- or double-deep storage and the Satellite® for multi-deep storage are possible as load handling devices.

The hybrid warehouse for Satellite® and forklift drivers

The hybrid warehouse with Aviator® is still a rare sight in industrial plants. But an innovative way to use space sustainably and multiple times: For production and commission and at the same time for a multi-story warehouse. For large, flat areas with conveyor belts, while valuable storage capacity for goods or temporary storage is created in the same building. Without turning the existing infrastructure and material flow paths upside down.

The Aviator® technology has, within the framework of the statics, no structural barriers and limits. Escape route requirements can be eliminated because the storage systems can be walked on. Fire and explosion protection requirements or similar are solvable because the Aviator® simply flies over areas. Building floors and hall levels can be easily connected vertically. Production zones are directly supplied, and the goods or semi-finished goods are removed - quite simply from the air. Ripening zones, which are arranged one behind the other, are served from above in an energy-saving manner, without temperature exchange.

Application examples of automated hybrid warehouses

As with our overhead storage and retrieval systems, our Westfalia key technologies ensure that our overhead storage and retrieval systems are highly available, precise, and reliable, energy-efficient, and easy to maintain. Depending on the load handling device, they can be designed for single-deep, double-deep and multiple-deep automated storage systems: Well thought-out down to the last detail. In the video, we show two typical application examples for warehouses with overhead storage and retrieval systems.

Forklifts drive through the automated Storage systems

The Aviator® can be used to design storage systems, such as the fully automated in-house storage system for a customer in Switzerland, through which man-operated forklifts are to pass: designed and implemented with two aisle-free storage and retrieval machines one above the other in a rack aisle as a Satellite® storage system. 

Narrow aisle stackers provide support in the storage system

These considerations are reflected in a partial replacement of rack storage with narrow-aisle stackers by the Aviator® at a customer in southern Germany. This is a single location warehouse with many aisles and a basically performance-oriented technology of two Aviator® with transfer unit. The existing floor plate could remain in place and the remaining narrow aisle trucks support in case of performance peaks or availability requirements. 

Pickers cross the warehouse rack aisles

Picking zones can also be integrated in satellite® storage systems and combined with the Aviator®. The aisle-free storage and retrieval machines ensure the storage, distribution and provision of palletized goods. Crossing the rack aisles is made possible for order pickers at freely definable points by means of personnel-protected crossings. The Aviator® is the solution for shortening picking paths and thus picking times.