Warehousing is a vital part of the logistic system. It is essential for any industry with physical goods movement within the supply chain. It involves heavily between inbound and outbound of materials, regardless of whether it is raw materials or an end product. Warehousing consists of complex operations. The advance of modern technology has led the warehouse industry to constantly improve its process by leveraging warehouse automation through information technology, equipment, and machinery to help simplify the complexity. Warehouse automation helps to reduce human error, labour, and cost, improving safety, increase productivity and accuracy. By having efficient warehousing, it will provide economic benefit to both the businesses and the customers. This article discusses the essential technologies for an automated warehouse.
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Radio Frequency Identification (RFID Technology)
The purpose of RFID is to keep track of materials or inventory with encoded tags as well as digital data with the information on every material that has been tagged. It contains components such as tags, labels, and readers. RFID technology can also be called Barcoding in some instances. An RFID reader uses radio waves to locate the materials that have been tagged which are known as an interrogator, unlike Barcoding. These radio waves can detect materials.
Some of the differences between Barcode and RFID are Barcoding can be detected as a single reading at a time whereby RFID can multiples reading. More data can hold using the RFID tag rather than a barcode. The tags are more durable compared to a barcode which is susceptible to environmental damages.
Warehouse Picking Technology
Order picking involves locating and pulling goods that can be in a form of raw materials, auxiliary material, semi-finished products, and finished goods from a warehouse to fulfill the customer’s order. The manual picking process can be time-consuming and can be a labour-intensive task. Hence to optimise the picking process, the use of technology innovation such as picking robots or machines can provide better accuracy and efficiency.The technology of an order picker in a warehouse designed for picking is considered a piece of technical equipment. Its picking technology system has several different combinations to serve order processes such as warehouse management system and direct system.