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Simulation-aided conceptioning and planning of order-picking systems

: Venn, E.; Spee, D.; Ulbrich, A.

Ellis, K.:
Progress in material handling research. 10th International Material Handling Research Colloquium 2008 : 28 May - 2 June 2008, Dortmund
Ann Arbor, Mich.: Braun-Brumfield, 2008
ISBN: 978-1-882780-15-0
International Material Handling Research Colloquium (IMHRC) <10, 2008, Dortmund>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IML ()

During recent years the logistic aspect of order-picking has become even more complex. While some 20 years ago a logistic planner had to consider and to evaluate approximately five system-variants, the variety of technical solutions has almost increased explosively in the last few years furthermore, current solutions show a more complex process behaviour and the interrelations between the different parts of a heterogeneous structured overall system are much more dynamical. Since this complexity and dynamic will continue to grow, the potentials of the current planning processes, which mainly rely on static calculations, will soon be exhausted. Considering this background, Fraunhofer IML in cooperation with the Chair of Material Flow and Logistics FML of the TU Munich developed a simulation-aided planning environment to dimension and evaluate heterogeneous multi-level order-picking systems already during the conceptioning phase. In the scope of this joint research project a prototype of a simulation-aided planning environment for picking systems could be developed, which allows for the evaluation of the ever more complex heterogeneous picking systems at acceptable costs already during the rough planning under consideration of their dynamical behavior and to generate the required data and key values. The solution was based on a modeling paradigm as well as on the definition of standardized elements for the design of heterogeneous picking systems and their representation in a generatable simulation model.