|SHARK is an intelligent material handling system with special focus on automated storage and retrieval equipment. It is a scalable and flexible solution, which can be used for any installation from a small single computer to a multi-server site with a large number of clients.
SHARK is designed from the idea that huge savings in cost and time can be achieved by optimising the performance of the warehouse by minimising the manual work that has to be done, by finding optimal storage locations for each article, by controlling the sequence of orders to pick and by supporting advanced equipment that improves the speed.
Another important issue is the quality of the warehouse operations, it is expensive to pick the wrong article and therefore SHARK supports control functions, barcodes in all areas, pick-to-light systems and other techniques that ensures the right article at the right place.
Advanced functionality is fine, but not if it requires special training to make use of it. SHARK is very easy to use for the normal operator, fast to learn and with intuitive functionality, so new operators can be trained to the system with a short introduction.
SHARK is designed from the idea, that users have different needs and due to this, it can be built and configured as needed. Four standard configurations are available:
- SHARK Light - A simple solution for small automated systems, that do not need integration into a host system, but still wants to be able to expand in the future.
- SHARK Basic - Simple solution, controlling up to 4 VLM’s and with the possibility to link to a host system.
- SHARK Standard - Multiple zones with shelves, pallets, VLM’s, goods reception, consolidation, etc.
- SHARK Enterprise - Full size packet with all modules included, for example automatic replenishment of one zone from another, control of conveyors, etc.
Integrating ERP (enterprise resource management) and automated storage systems (VLM’s)
From a stand-alone computer to a server based installation with numerous clients, SHARK has been designed for integration into an existing ERP system to manage the physical flow of products more efficiently than by any other ordinary ERP system.
With Vertical Lifts
SHARK is especially suitable for the control of automated vertical storage lifts (VLM LogiMats), where a long list of built-in functions optimises the picking speed, storage utilisation and support of advanced functions like tilted trays (individually selectable for each tray), control of pick-to-light in the lifts and individual user selectable variable working height for the operator of the gate.
Ordinary shelving and flow-rack can be used in combination with automats and thereby further optimising speed and minimising cost by storing fast-runners in easy accessibly locations close to the automats.
SHARK’s batch picking (picking more than one order at a time), improves picking speed dramatically because waiting time can be minimised to a minimum or even be removed completely. This is because SHARK optimises the sequence of order lines and orders, so the equipment can be operated as fast as possibly.
All equipment operates in parallel so while the operator picks in one VLM, the other machines are busy retrieving the next items.
As a part of the system configuration, it is possible to define walking distance between the automats, combining this with a calculation of the time it will take to retrieve a specific tray; SHARK is able to direct the operator in the most efficient way.
With LogiMate Pick-Carts
SHARK supports as standard, the LogiMate; a smart pick-cart with wireless connection to the server and a pick/put to light system with consent button, identifying the correct box as well as simple pick-carts where barcode labels are used for confirmation and identification.
Click here for more information on the LogiMate
Pick to light systems improve performance and quality dramatically
Normally in SHARK, orders are picked concurrently (batch picking), a technique much more effective than conventional methods. The operator or SHARK selects the next batch of orders to be picked and SHARK optimises the picking sequence for optimal speed. Especially for VLM’s, it is a smart feature that the batch is “floating”, this means that orders can be added or removed from the batch, also before the batch is finished. SHARKs batch picking window has all the necessary information available and is nevertheless simple to understand. In the upper left corner, an arrow shows in which direction the transaction goes, a green arrow out, means it’s a pick, a red arrow in means it’s a put-away.
A graphical drawing shows the specific location.
Article number, description, order number, quantity on location, etc. are seen explicitly and push-buttons, to for example printout a label or correction the picked quantity are also available.
An express order, requiring immediate action, is indicated to the operator with a blinking red flag on the status line and a specific express pushbutton is displayed (can be extended to a flashing light visible from a long distance), press the express key and SHARK sets the current orders on wait and picks immediately to the express order. Once the express order is finished, SHARK continues with the interrupted batch, this could not be simpler!
The inventory module provides a fast and secure way to keep the stock on track. Stock taking orders can be created, counting can be done on paper or directly entered into the system, recounting is supported and the result can be printed as reports and reported back to an ERP system and the actual stock in SHARK can of course be adjusted according to the result of the counting.
By showing the difference result as graphical symbols, it is fast to have an overview of what to recount or check. One of the other nice feature is that if counting is done in the VLM’s, SHARK can get the tray automatically, show a graphical picture of it’s layout and use a light pointer if available, to guide the operator to the right location.
SHARK is fully scalable. Start with basic functionality, move on with more functions as the needs arise and end with a solution supporting even the biggest warehouse. All with the same software platform and the same basic data.
- SHARK Light is targeting the small installation with 1-4 vertical lifts, no shelves and no need to connect to a host system. It allows articles to be stored and retrieved by name and to create locations with graphical displays in the machines. One of the big advances using this solution compared to a more simple approach is that it supports a smoothly later upgrade to more advanced configuration, because everything already is registered in database.
- SHARK Basic is similar to SHARK Light, but it also supports interface to a host system. It is limited to a single zone and 4 automats.
- SHARK Standard has full support for automats, pallets, shelves, etc. It is only missing some of the more complex functions like automatic replenishment etc.
- SHARK Enterprise is for demanding installation with the need of complex functionality, it also supports conveyors.