Industrial Carousel Guide
What is a carousel?
A carousel is an automated storage device that can be used to store many parts in a very small footprint. Carousels come in two main configurations, Vertical and Horizontal.
Vertical carousels take full advantage of overhead space. These carousels can save you up to 70% more floor space when compared to conventional static storage. Operator productivity is increased by up to two-thirds by eliminating the old “walk, search, stock, store” method of material handling. These carousels bring items to the picker via the shortest route possible. Verticals provide well lit work areas reducing worker fatigue and error. You’ll enjoy added security and safety as items are kept out of sight within the carousel. You won’t have to climb, stretch or bend to retrieve items ever again. Verticals deliver items conveniently to the carousel’s pick station providing one of the most efficient and productive means of storage retrieval on the market today.
Not all vertical carousels are open, however. If you’ve been to a home improvement store recently, you’ll know that they have installed carousels to hold carpets, vinyl rolls and other large rolled goods. This type of unit is called a spool or carpet carousel.
Below is a short video to understand how a vertical carousel works and how it can help you.
Vertical Lift Modules
Similar to Vertical Carousels, Vertical Lift Modules (VLM’s) are designed with space savings in mind. Like vertical carousels, these units use vertical space instead of spreading loads out on the warehouse floor and can acheive a total space savings of up to 80%. VLM’s differ from vertical carousels in that they do not have a continuously rotating series of trays, but instead rely on a shuttle that traverses the height of the unit and picks entire shelves from their set locations. It then brings these shelves to the operator at the bottom of the unit where items can be picked or stored at a safe working height.
Unlike vertical carousels, vertical lift modules also allow for loads of different heights to be stored in the same unit. The unit’s software knows how much room it has in any particular storage space and when needed can reshuffle the shelves to create the right amount of room for almost any item’s height. Some VLM’s even have two shuttles so a continuous pick or put cycle can be maintained with little or no interruption. These units are also very secure and simple to use.
Below is a short video to understand how a vertical lift module works and how it can help you.
A Horizontal carousel is simply a rotating carriage of bins. Each bin has shelves (usually 4 or 5) Products can be stored directly on shelves themselves or in totes stored on the shelves. The operator of the carousel simply stands in front of the carousel and has the products come to him for retrieval. Horizontal carousels save a tremendous amount of time and energy when compared to traditional methods of rack or shelving type storage.
Below is a short video to understand how a horizontal carousel works and how it can help you.
Carousels can be controlled in a variety of different ways, from basic hand or foot controls to more complex computer controlled systems. SJF’s Genesys division has developed an innovative carousel controls suite that can be used with ANY brand, make or model of carousel and can be easily and fully integrated into any existing systems you have.