Flow racks are frequently used for picking A-articles (fast movers). Besides buffering several storage units in a row and thus large quantities available, nevertheless the FIFO principle is observed which is of advantage or mandatory with several applications. Furthermore, it is favorable to separate the access to picking from the replenishment process as the flow channel is replenished from the back side and goods flow to the front.
Flow rack also for automated warehouses
This working principle is not only possible for manual warehouses, but also for automated warehouses with order picking connection. At BIG, pallets are handed over to gravity roller conveyors which form picking stations for one and the same article. Our system Dynakom50 also makes use of this for the static provision of articles. Order picking may take place in different ways: Handheld radio communication, pick-by-voice, or the PicKom order picking trolley allow efficient access to a front of order picking stations. Using PicKom, several orders can be summarized and picked simultaneously in optimized batches. PicKom is equipped with put-to-light and thus allows multi-order picking at a very low error rate. A high-performance order picking, however, can be also realized by equipping the storage channels with pick-by-light displays.
Flow racks, however, not only make sense for order picking, but also for order consolidation. This way, single-article channels can be realized for collecting totes or cartons that are delivered or added to stock promptly. A display (pick-by-light) at the front side of a channel may visualize completeness and prompt the worker to pick an article.