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Industry Tools -- July/August 2017

  • APICS partners
July/August 2017


Crown Equipment Auto Positioning System and Auto Fence technology for forklifts

Crown Equipment announced the addition of its Auto Positioning System and Auto Fence operator-assist technology as part of its forklift automation solutions portfolio. The Auto Positioning System uses manual or shared pick locations in a linked warehouse management system to take the most effective route to the next rack location. The tool controls both lift and travel to optimize the amount of time needed to reach and stop at rack locations. The Auto Fence technology also applies radio-frequency identification tags to set up speed or height zones in narrow aisles to reduce the risk of product, truck and facility damage.

Locus Robotics Advanced Navigation

Locus Robotics introduced the Locus Robotics Advanced Navigation (LRAN) solution. When integrated into LocusBots autonomous robots, LRAN enables multiple autonomous robots to work collaboratively alongside workers in busy retail and third-party-logistics warehouse fulfillment operations. The autonomous robotics navigation system operates through Locus Robotics’ automatic cloud distribution, integrates into existing warehouse infrastructure, and promotes navigational accuracy and increased pick performance rates without disrupting established warehouse workflows.

Coding and scanning

ScanSKU released its M Series 1D/2D bar code scanner. The rugged, Android-based mobile scanner includes a 2D-compatible scanner for use with 2D bar codes or quick-response codes in logistics and retail environments. The M Series bar code scanner features a Hard-Key keyboard for ease of use with gloves, a Micro SD slot, a SIM card slot, GPS tracking and a removable battery with an optional charging dock. The tool can operate in temperatures ranging from minus 13 to 158 degrees Fahrenheit and includes a 4-inch backlit touch screen. M Series scanners also are equipped with the customizable ScanSKU Stocktaking app. During the inventory-counting process, the worker can capture data, take pictures and email results immediately after taking count. 

Enterprise Management

Onfleet route optimization platform

Onfleet launched its international cloud-based logistics and route optimization platform solution for e-commerce and on-demand customers. As part of the expansion, the driver app now is available in Spanish and French. Customers including startups and enterprises can use the software-as-a-service platform to manage all aspects of last-mile deliveries, including tracking drivers, dispatching and communicating status updates, and using data to analyze and improve delivery operations. The application’s cloud-based platform includes a web-based dashboard, intuitive driver apps, real-time tracking and notifications for customers, and a robust API to help businesses increase efficiency, scale business and improve Customer Relations.

Health and safety

Powerform S8+ glove

SW Safety Solutions announced the Powerform S8+ glove, its latest development in workplace single-use gloves. The TrackTec high-density, embossed micro-pyramid grip pattern provides 200 percent more tactile grip on wet or oily surfaces, reduces slippage-related damage and employee injuries, and decreases consumables costs. Designed for use in areas such as manufacturing, food processing, supply chain operations and chemical engineering, the glove features a longer cuff and an irritant-free manufacturing process for longer wear times and maximum worker safety. SW's Color-Q construction, which features two layers of advanced polymer with contrasting interior and exterior colors, has ANDSI level 2 puncture resistance.

Material handling

ORBIS GitterPak

ORBIS launched its all-plastic GitterPak collapsible bulk container. Designed for heavy-weight loads and high-velocity goods, the container can hold nearly 2,000 pounds of cargo. It also meets the European standard footprint by measuring nearly 4 feet by 3 inches by 3 feet. GitterPak containers are available with as many as four access doors and have a three-runner base to fit into standard supported racking or automation systems. In addition, the plastic material enables easy cleaning and prevents rust and metal-on-metal part damage.

Paxxal introduced its North American Pallet series. Weighing less than 50 pounds each, the pallets are made from 100 percent recyclable patented composite and impact-resistant material that makes them durable; lightweight; cost effective; and resistant to extreme temperatures, bacterial growth, corrosion and ultraviolet rays. Meeting the Grocery Manufacturers Association’s specifications, the pallets feature reinforced blocks, 95 percent top-deck coverage, a solid core, and radio-frequency identification tags and bar codes. They also contain handholds, stretch-wrap corners, and chamfered undersides and decks for easier pallet jack and forklift use and increased worker safety. The pallets can be used for pooling; closed-loop supply chains; automated facilities; and specialty transport for beverage, pharmaceutical and auto-parts products.



BOSCH announced its Sigpack VPF (Vertical Platform Flat) Pouch, a freely scalable vertical-flat-pouch packaging machine for food and pharmaceutical industry products. Modular flexibility of the dosing and cross-sealing units allows for easy adjustment of pouch sizes and the ability to scale from two to 12 lanes. In addition, the Condition Monitoring Platform software solution provides real-time information about machines and system and process statuses that can be used to detect deviations or maintenance issues ahead of time, resulting in less downtime and increased machine availability.

Shop floor

AeroVironment launched an advanced version of ConnectRx as a standard feature on its PosiCharge ProCore line of electric forklift chargers. ConnectRx’s advanced cable connector health monitoring technology uses dual set-point sensors to alert users to potential charger or battery problems that could cause employee injury or damage the electric forklift or facilities. With an easily configurable companion app and universal battery design, ProCore with ConnectRx combines charge algorithms, battery thermal management and anti-arc technology to manage voltage and battery electrolyte temperatures in real time, compensate for battery-gassing control, and promote increased operational performance.

DESTACO GTB Series Servo Positioning Rotary Tables

DESTACO, part of Dover, and Techno Dynamics unveiled the GTB Series of Servo Positioning Rotary Tables. The GTB Series features a roller-gear drive, which is a lifetime-lubricated solution that delivers high torque with high speed and motion flexibility to meet demanding payload requirements in numerous industrial rotary table applications. The four models — GTB40, GTB63, GTB80 and GTB100 — contain a direct motor coupling to eliminate backlash and can be configured with an optional gear reducer for increased torque. The compact size enables vertical and horizontal orientation and can support a spectrum of off-the-shelf servomotors in multiple operating environments.

Gorbel released the newest of its crane and lifting technologies, the Electric Chain Hoists, which can be used with Gorbel Work Station Crane trolleys or for S- and W-Beam trolleys. The line includes single- and dual-speed hoists with single or double fall and capacity loads of one-eighth ton to 5 tons. The hoist is ideal for both high-production environments or periodic lifting and positioning applications and is tested by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and FEM/ISO standards. The units also feature a compact body design that is easy to operate in low-headroom areas.

L-Com Global Connectivity USB 3

L-Com Global Connectivity introduced a new series of USB 3.0 Type C to Type A cable assemblies. Fully covered by an aluminum and polyester shield and a tinned copper braid shield, the twisted-pair data lines protect against electromagnetic and radio-frequency interference, reduce crosstalk, transfer data at up to 4.8 gigabytes per second, and enable plug-and-play connections. The cable assemblies include a gold-plated connector for repeated mating cycles and are ideal for mobile devices, computer peripherals, diagnostic tools, and military and aerospace applications.

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