For many years, Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) have proven their worth with a long history of automatically transporting loads within a production or distribution environment. To many, that’s the extent of what AGVs can do. We’ve covered 3 other areas where AGVs can have success in previous blog posts, including cold storage, automatic truck loading and automatic truck unloading (yes they are different from each other). All of these topics cover places where these autonomous mobile robots can be used to bring value to your operation. They are all covered in our most recent whitepaper, ‘Five Unexpected Applications for AGV Success’, we outline several ways where AGVs can bring you value.
If you’re doing the math, you’ll realize that we’ve covered 3 of 5 areas. Next up is narrow and very narrow aisle operation.
Narrow & Very Narrow Aisle Operation and AS/RS-like Operation…from an AGV
While an AGV can perform almost any activity that a forklift truck can, AGV functionality extends far beyond simple transport of goods. One area where AGVs excel is in narrow and very narrow aisle storage and picking.
In narrow aisle operation, an AGV can automatically pick up and deliver pallets, containers, rolls, carts and many other conveyable loads from floor or racking. An AGV’s tight turning allows for operation in narrow aisle racking environments.
Very narrow aisle (VNA) AGVs operate in a similar same way, but can be used in high-bay racking aisles, very much like an automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS). VNA AGVs use turret or telescopic forks to store loads in the warehouse racks.
For VNA AGV operation, the AGV relies on a dual-mode navigation. This allows the AGV to navigate by laser or camera outside the narrow aisle environment and on wire or magnet when operating within the aisles, where more exacting measurements are required to store loads.
You can read about other unexpected Applications for AGV Success in our next blog post, or, for more instant gratification, download the entire whitepaper, ‘Five Unexpected Applications for AGV Success’, here.
AGVs can bring fast ROI and efficiency to an operation in many more areas than you may realize. And as technology advances, the options will continue to grow for making AGVs an integral part of your supply chain operation.
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