An automated storage and retrieval system (AS/RS)—also called AS-RS or ASRS—is a type or genre of warehouse automation technology specifically designed to buffer, store, and retrieve product and inventory on demand. AS/RS technology varies substantially, and can consist of shuttles, cranes, carousels, vertical lift modules (VLMs), micro-loads, mini-loads, unit-loads, or other systems. It is often integrated with a warehouse execution software (WES), warehouse management software (WMS), or other controls. Contact Viet Pos Rack immediately for more specific advice on this ASRS Robot Shelving Solution.

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Benefits of AS/RS

By automating the low-value and easily repeated task of inventory storage and retrieval, AS/RS brings many powerful benefits to the operations that utilize it, including:

– More efficient use of floor space
– Ability to reclaim unused vertical space
– Increased inventory storage density
– Improved ergonomics and safety, resulting in fewer accidents
– Increased throughput
– Reduced labor costs
– Fewer labor constraints due to labor shortages
– Often modular design for maximum flexibility
– Increased order picking accuracy
– Improved product security for premium inventory

Warehouse operation with ASRS solution

Types of Automated Storage & Retrieval Systems (AS/RS)

Automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS) come in two main varieties: Unit-Load AS/RS and Mini-Load AS/RS. Between these two main buckets, there are six primary types of AS/RS systems:

Unit-Load AS/RS Cranes (Fixed-Aisle & Moveable Aisle)
Mini-Load AS/RS Cranes
Shuttle- and Bot-based AS/RS
Carousel-based AS/RS (Vertical, Horizontal, and Robotic)
Vertical Lift Module (VLM) AS/RS
Micro-Load (Stocker)

Uses & Applications of AS/RS

1. Goods-to-Person for Order Picking and Packing

Picking, packing, and processing orders is one of the most time-consuming tasks in the order fulfillment process. In fact, the process of walking and manually picking orders can account for more than 50 percent of the time associated with picking. AS/RS offers an alternative to this through the use of Goods-to-Person (GTP, or G2P) order picking.

2. Staging Orders for Shipping

The impact of e-commerce and omni-channel delivery on the order fulfillment process can not be overstated. Customers are now able to shop and place orders around the clock, and they want their product delivered fast and on time. But even if an operation accepts and processes orders 24/7, there are often constraints to shipping windows: Due to worker shifts, for example, or exorbitant night and weekend delivery fees.

3. Managing Buffer Storage

In a typical warehouse, different processes take different amounts of time to complete. If these discrepancies are not properly managed, then all it takes is a poorly-timed piece of equipment or zone slowdown in any stage to bring an entire operation to a standstill or mass slowdown.

4. Storage and Point of Use Storage

One of the primary benefits of AS/RS is its ability to store product in a way that makes the most efficient use of available space, especially over the long term. By implementing AS/RS, an operation can automate their long-term storage of raw material or product and retrieve what they need, when they need it.

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