Automation innovations support connected intralogistics

5th July 2018
Source: Hyster
Posted By : Alex Lynn
Automation innovations support connected intralogistics

With increased demand for ‘connected’ operations, Hyster Europe is supporting applications throughout the logistics chain with innovative 360° technology solutions.

Affordable automation

Paul Smith, Manager, Integrated Solutions, for Hyster Europe, stated: “By working closely with our customers and our dealers, we identified a demand for a new and different approach to automation. We found that the costly automation solutions usually seen in the logistics sector are implemented on a large scale but fail to meet the needs for recurring, but intermittent, automated tasks.”

The Hyster solution, addresses these challenges with an affordable, truck based approach. Currently available on selected Hyster tow tractors, pedestrian counterbalance lift trucks, and low level order pickers, the Hyster solution enables applications to benefit from the quality and reliability of Hyster trucks, alongside automation technology.

Rather than requiring complex changes to enable automated logistics, the Hyster truck based solution maps the environment using natural features in the building. This means that the truck’s automated tasks can be easily adapted if the site infrastructure changes.

In addition, Hyster allows the truck to be used as a fully automated unit for repetitive tasks, or as a supportive, partly automated machine. The automation system can even be switched off completely so the truck can be used by an operator as normal.

The Hyster automation solution is customisable, the experts from Hyster conduct simulations and create the right solutions for each customer, so that they can then develop and present a business case.

Progressive power management

In the evolving pursuit of optimal power options for mobile equipment, Hyster is providing a range of choices so that logistics operations can select the right power solution for their application.

Lithium-ion batteries are becoming popular as they allow applications to streamline their energy requirements. A lithium-ion battery can offer savings of up to 30% in energy costs compared to a lead-acid battery and produces zero emissions.

Due to fast charging speeds and the possibility for opportunity charging, plus up to three times the life of a lead-acid battery, lithium-ion batteries support efficiency in logistics operations and are particularly well suited for extended or multi-shift operations. However, they are not for everyone, and lead-acid batteries will still best suit the needs of certain applications.

Hyster has also previously revealed that a zero-emission electric laden container handling truck is in development. The Hyster Big Truck, which is powered by a lithium-ion battery and electric motors, is currently entering the test phase. Once fully developed, Hyster Europe aims to offer the truck with a choice of power options that utilise lithium-ion batteries alongside fuel cells, meeting the needs of logistics operations which require zero-emissions trucks that also meet their demanding application needs.

Hyster also provides an array of battery management solutions for several Hyster J-series electric trucks. With the option to use a Hyster side battery exchange stacker, forklift, overhead crane, fork lifting eyes or roller beds, there are now five ways to exchange the battery on a Hyster electric truck. 

Connected fleets

To keep operations running smoothly in Industry 4.0, smart logistics applications are increasingly looking to connect their lift truck fleets. With the Hyster Tracker telematics solution, Hyster supports operations in collecting data, from daily service checks to utilisation analysis.

Hyster Tracker can be added to a variety of materials handling equipment and container handling trucks to provide proactive maintenance alerts. Hour meter, cost of operation, periodic maintenance, fault codes and impacts can all be tracked with automatic emails generated when certain faults or impacts occur. GPS tracking data also helps identify areas within an operation that may present a higher probability of incidents.

Hyster Tracker can also work with RFID cards so that specific equipment is used only by authorised or appropriately trained operators. The idle shutdown function can also be set to power off a truck after a pre-determined amount of time if the equipment is tracked as idle or unattended. Operator pre-shift Checklist Tracking can also help determine any issues with a truck, so they can be addressed and resolved quickly to reduce expenses and potential downtime. 

All data collected by the Hyster Tracker system is stored on a secure online portal, Easily accessed, the portal provides clear, customisable reporting with quick visibility of key metrics.

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