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Tread Of Racking Development ----AS/RS Warehouse Racking
Jul 17, 2017

AS/RS systems are designed for automated storage and retrieval of parts and items in manufacturing, distribution, retail, wholesale and institutions. They first originated in the 1960s, initially focusing on heavy pallet loads but with the evolution of the technology the handled loads have become smaller. The systems operate under computerized control, maintaining an inventory of stored items. Retrieval of items is accomplished by specifying the item type and quantity to be retrieved. 

The computer determines where in the storage area the item can be retrieved from and schedules the retrieval. It directs the proper automated storage and retrieval machine (SRM) to the location where the item is stored and directs the machine to deposit the item at a location where it is to be picked up. A system of conveyors and or automated guided vehicles is sometimes part of the AS/RS system. These take loads into and out of the storage area and move them to the manufacturing floor or loading docks. To store items, the pallet or tray is placed at an input station for the system, the information for inventory is entered into a computer terminal and the AS/RS system moves the load to the storage area, determines a suitable location for the item, and stores the load. As items are stored into or retrieved from the racks, the computer updates its inventory accordingly.

The benefits of an AS/RS system include reduced labor for transporting items into and out of inventory, reduced inventory levels, more accurate tracking of inventory, and space savings. Items are often stored more densely than in systems where items are stored and retrieved manually.