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Ben E. Keith: Autosatmover automatic warehouse

Sector: Food & Beverage

Ben E. Keith Beverages, is one of the largest Anheuser Busch (AB InBev) beer distributors in the U.S. This private company operates (14) distribution facilities in the State of Texas handling both A/B product and many high quality craft beer suppliers as well.

Problem

In 2015 Ben E. Keith realized they needed to improve their largest Beverage facility in Dallas TX by introducing automation to increase both their case and pallet pick operations. The main problem facing them was they didn’t have the necessary floor space available to provide the increased square footage required in their existing building.

With a ceiling height that only allowed storing full pallets (3) levels high, management quickly realized that in order to recoup floor space they needed to examine storing full pallets of product much higher, in a more productive fashion. Forecasted growth indicated that they really required approximately 14,000 positions of pallet storage to handle both their case and full pallet shipments.

Solution

After examining various forms of full pallet Automation in the US, Ben E. Keith management settled on the AUTOSATMOVER System from Automha Americas. By utilizing this technology the company was able to store 14,400 pallets, (8) levels high in 30,000 square feet compared to the 105,000 that would have been required using their former storage methods.

Utilizing this fully automated Cart Based ASRS has enabled them to store and retrieve up to 240 pallets/hour of combined inbound and outbound full pallet loads, without any forklift operators working inside the storage System.

The system includes:

Automha Americas supplied a Rack-Supported Structure including a Penthouse on the roof with an overall height of 92 Ft. This provides a temperature controlled warehouse that keeps the product at a constant 60°F within the summer months that exceed 100°F.

Facts and figures

  • (8) Levels with Carts at every level fed by (2) Stationary Lifters x (2) Modules ensure high throughput and provide redundancy not available in typical Automated Crane type systems
  • Installation in Dallas TX
  • Ground Works for slab began June 2016
  • New System operational June 2017
  • 14,400 Pallet Storage capacity (Over 1 Million Cases stored) in 30,000 Square ft
  • 1,600 Lanes of Storage (both 8 and 10 deep lanes of storage)
  • 17 Inventory Turns / Year
  • 240 Pallets/Hour Throughput Capacity (Combined In/Out)
  • (2) Modules, (8) Levels High
  • Total of (16) Mover Carts w/ SuperCap Carts to store product in individual lanes
  • Total of (4) Stationary Lifters to move product in and out of the (8) Levels
  • Automha AWM System communicates with BEK Host Network
  • High degree of Redundancy, a level can be shut down individually for maintenance and the remainder of the system continues operating
  • Dual Staircases allow easy access for maintenance or management personnel to both storage modules

Gallery

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