At just 22 years of age, Hans Still began his entrepreneurial journey by repairing electric motors in Hamburg, Germany. Now, over 90 years later, the STILL brand is one of the world leaders in intralogistics. Taking home the esteemed International Intralogistics and Forklift Truck of the Year (IFOY) award this year, they’ve once again proven their commitment to innovation and usability.
STILL’s latest iGo neo CX 20 earned itself best in class in the ‘warehouse truck’ category at the 2017 Munich event. This autonomous, horizontal order picker is able to work in collaboration with warehousing staff to increase picking efficiency by up to 30%.
“The worldwide first autonomous horizontal order picker closes the gap between robotics and intralogistics.”
Intralogistics is an industry term which may confuse the uninitiated. For a much more succinct definition than we could produce, we’ve gone to the experts. According to Invata Intralogistics:
“Intralogistics is the art of optimising, integrating, automating, and managing the logistical flow of information and material goods within the walls of a fulfillment or distribution centre.”
There is more to it than simply automating warehouses with driverless forklifts. The multi-pronged approach includes the following (from Invata Intrologistics):
Intralogistics experts like those at Invata build systems with the core objectives of being highly adaptable and fully integrative. While it may sound like industry buzz-talk, these values help businesses to innovate their existing processes to better support their manufacturing and warehousing objectives. With the often-slim margins and high costs involved in manufacturing, efficient transport, materials movement and storage can make or break a business. The ability to integrate new software and equipment on the factory floor, without upsetting the apple cart, so to speak, is key to engaging with businesses to adopt this new technology.
STILL’s automation solutions are a key piece in the puzzle, which can be easily implemented into existing picking and packing lines. Working alongside the operator, the automated truck maintains a safe distance from the operator and the shelving, while following the picking route. As the iGo neo controls steering, stopping and moving forward, the operator can load and unload materials without having to move between the driving and picking positions. As the operator is able to concentrate on picking rather than driving, less errors in picking occur. The sophisticated motion sensors ensure that the truck will stop or slow down based on the obstacles in front of it automatically. As a result, safety is maintained at all times, while tasks are performed more efficiently.
The compact design, with lithium ion battery can fit into the smallest of warehouses and operates over lengthy periods of intense use. As a part of a wider intralogistics plan, the iGo neo can help to revolutionise safety, efficiency and ultimately margins in any manufacturing or warehousing operation.