A plethora of innovations and product launches will mark the presence of the mechanical and systems engineers at the 16th LogiMAT.
Material flow concepts for logistics solutions are in a state of transition. Audi is testing out the use of drones in production supply. Driverless transport vehicles will transport containers and pallets through factory halls. Sophisticated mobile picking robots are about to start reaching into boxes.
“In the foreseeable future, driverless transport systems and vehicles will in combination with robotics be in a position to replace the employee-to-goods picking strategy with automated materials handling equipment and processes,” declares Markus Schröppel, acting institute director and head of department for mechanical development and materials flow automation at the IFT Institute for Materials Handling and Logistics at the University of Stuttgart. “Still somewhat exotic only ten years ago, driverless transport systems and vehicles are now one of the most important aspects of intralogistics.”
This development is reflected in the exhibits and innovations to be shown by makers of materials handling technology and systems at LogiMAT 2018, many of which will be seen for the first time. In Halls 1, 3, 5 and 7, all the notable international manufacturers and systems integrators will be gathered together in one place. They will present the trade audience with a comprehensive overview of the latest developments and tried and trusted standard systems – and will offer visitors the opportunity to make direct comparison between systems. The range of solutions covers interesting innovations in materials handling components from mobile picking robots and innovative order picking systems through to the latest in conventional automated logistics systems with new shuttle solutions, electrified monorail conveyors and compact all-in-one systems for automated, dynamic warehouse processes for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). “Mechanical and systems engineering manufacturers have always formed the largest group of exhibitors at LogiMAT,” says Peter Kazander, Managing Director of EUROEXPO GmbH and LogiMAT’s Exhibition Director. ”Never before in Stuttgart will so many exhibitors, innovations and premieres have been seen together as at the 16th International Trade Fair for Intralogistics Solutions and Process Management.”
World debut for driverless transport platform
Head of IFT department Schröppel explains: “As an intensive industry get-together and source of information LogiMAT has become the ultimate trade fair for intralogistics solutions and process management. Held every year, it is able to keep pace with the ultra-short development cycles across all segments in the sector. In the context of materials handling technology alone, exhibits by international manufacturers every year in Stuttgart include more innovations in one place than anywhere else in the world.”
In 2018, many materials handling technology manufacturers and systems engineers will be focusing on driverless transport vehicles and systems: Bito-Lagertechnik Bittmann GmbH (Hall 6, Stand C33) will present the LEO Locative container and carton transporter among its latest highlights. E&K Automation GmbH (Hall 7, Stand C11) has announced the world launch of an ultra-low driverless transport platform. Grenzebach Maschinenbau GmbH (Hall 7, Stand C21) will introduce Mobile Robot MR10S – a standard driverless transport vehicle with a collaborative robot that can handle up to 10 kg and has a working range of 1,300 mm. Transport and handling tasks are coordinated by fleet management apps. Toshiba Infrastructure Systems & Solutions Corporation (East entrance, Stand EO64) will launch a new picking robot. Innovation driver Magazino GmbH (Hall 5, Stand D55) will be presenting its innovative Soto, the world’s first ‘cognitive-controlled robot’ for warehouse receiving and automated replenishment processes. Karaca Mekatronik Konveyör ve Otomasyon Sistemleeri Mak.San (Hall 1, Stand C81) will be exhibiting the Avenhof AGV with a field-length safety area the warning and protective fields of which respond with greater sensitivity the faster the vehicle is travelling. Stöcklin Logistik AG Förder- und Lagertechnik (Hall 3, Stand C30) will be presenting the Eagle-Ant driverless transport vehicle for transporting long loads.
“In addition to the industrial trucks manufacturers, almost all systems engineers and a large number of newcomers are offering driverless transport vehicles and systems for a very wide range of applications,” explains Schröppel. “With their scalability and system operation without significant infrastructural investment, they present attractive entry-level automatic solutions for processes, the automation of which has not seemed economically feasible hitherto.”
Shuttles for every need
Although fixed materials handling systems will continue to be needed for the time being for large volumes and high throughputs “they too will become ever more streamlined with ongoing concept and component development” says Schröppel. “Choosing the optimum solution for throughput and future business process development can be made easier using simulation projects and the involvement of universities, planners and consultants.”
International exhibitors at LogiMAT will be demonstrating many new developments in the sphere of automated warehouse and material flows using conventional systems technology. One enduring trend is in shuttle systems. Knapp AG (Hall 3, Stand B03) will be celebrating the world launch of the Evo OSR shuttle at LogiMAT. Stöcklin Logistik will be presenting an FSP (flexible in storage and performance) adaptive automated small-parts warehouse shuttle system, which can handle a very wide range of containers. Dambach Lagersysteme GmbH & Co. KG (Hall 1, Stand F41) will present its new versatile Multiflex System with compact shuttle capable of switching levels. Italian company Automha Spa. (Hall 1, Stand F37) will be presenting the Rushmover, a new pallet shuttle able to turn in two directions. Storax Engineered Storage Solutions (Hall 5, Stand D72), part of the Portuguese group of companies Ramada Investimentos e Industria, will be showing two new compact Ranger shuttle warehousing systems at LogiMAT 2018. The system is operated via conventional forklift equipment. As soon as the shuttle enters a warehouse tunnel, it switches to automatic operation.
Another trend is in complete solutions. TGW Logistics Group GmbH (Hall 5, Stand D61) will be showing FlashPick®, among other things, a complete smart solution designed for single orders with materials handling technology, shuttle, picking station and software for automated single-item picking. LT Fördertechnik GmbH (Hall 7, Stand A71) offers small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) a compact automated small-parts warehouse in addition to materials handling technology, picking station, control and warehouse management system. Wegener + Stapel GmbH (Hall 5, Stand C65) with its new Flexpick+, will be exhibiting a complete system for small and medium-sized enterprises with ranges between 5,000 and 12,000 small-volume products including material flow hardware (warehouse cube and materials handling technology) as well as warehouse management and material flow control software.
Accompanying programme provides additional information
The optimum layout for automated material flows with fixed materials handling technology is created in modular form using chain, belt and roller conveyors. Modular systems for individual components ensure maximum flexibility with customised system layout and a high level of scalability as regards system size and investment volume. The latest developments in components for transport rollers, gears and drive control systems, for instance, presented by international manufacturers at LogiMAT, are designed to generate efficiency benefits and cost savings.
Arne Limper, sales manager for Rauscher F.X. Lagertechnik GmbH (Hall 1, Stand J17) says that these examples show that “LogiMAT is the complete Who’s Who of warehouse technology.” The stands of international exhibitors demonstrate the state of the art in system development and the integration of the most recent technical developments, such as in the spheres of sensor technology, image capture, robotics and materials development. What’s more, the informative accompanying programme with, for example, specialist forums such as ‘AGV 4.0 for optimised efficiency’ (13.3., Forum E, Hall 9), ‘Transport and handling – completely autonomous’ (14.3. Forum A, Hall 1)‚ ‘Material flows in the age of Industry 4.0’ (14.3., Forum C, Hall 4) and ‘Milestones in smart mobile robotics’ (15.3., Forum E, Hall 9) meet the needs of trade visitors for information on the issues of digital transformation and future-proof intralogistics design. The second day of the exhibition is ‘IFT Day’, spotlighting the theme of ‘Intralogistics – Future – Technology’.
“Once again in 2018, nowhere will it be possible to obtain a more comprehensive overview of current products and solutions in the sphere of intralogistics and a more informative accompanying programme than in Stuttgart in March,” sums up Exhibition Director Peter Kazander. ‘First-hand intralogistics’ – everything you need to know, straight from the exhibitors and experts in the field. The 16th LogiMAT is a multi-dimensional exhibition offering the trade audience a guide to efficient and sustainable solutions for the challenges presented by Logistics 4.0.”