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5 Questions to Ask When Choosing Automated Guided Vehicles in Warehouse

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Perhaps for many people, the first discovery of an automated guided vehicle (AGV) can actually be traced back to1954 when it was first proposed by Arthur Barrett. Since then, theAGV has undergone tremendous development, completely changing the way materials are handled and transported.

Automated Guided Vehicles in Warehouse Types

Automated Guided Vehicles in Warehouse encompass various types, one of which is automatic pallet trucks designed to transport pallet-loaded goods within manufacturing facilities. They can be used for inter-floor operations and typically can accommodate lifting requirements of up to 2 meters. There are also more versatile automatic forklifts that can handle loads of up to4 tons or perform high stacking operations up to8 meters. Other types of forklifts AGVs include reach trucks and very narrow aisle (VNA) forklifts designed for high stacking and high lifting operations in narrow aisles.

Automated Guided Vehicles in Warehouse Navigation System Types

Laser Guidance

AGV is equipped with rotating laser emitters and receivers, allowing it to detect reflectors mounted in the environment and determine positions extremely accurately. Especially suitable for medical applications as they are very precise, allowing products to be handled to the nearest centimeter.

Wire Guidance

AGV travels along ground tracks embedded in the facility floor, which can be composed of wires, rails, magnetic lines, or cables. Wires transmit signals through antennas or sensors, which the AGV detects to navigate. Requires track installation, therefore only recommended for applications with lower flexibility requirements.

Vision Guidance

AGVs using visual guidance follow paths drawn on the ground, with their cameras recognizing this path. Compared to wire guidance, visual guidance is more cost-effective as it does not require any special installation work.

Landmark Guidance

Similar to visual guidance, AGVs using landmark guidance do not require modifications to infrastructure. Landmark-guided AGVs identify and map objects in the environment, determine their positions in real-time, and navigate within facilities independently without adapting the infrastructure. This provides a high degree of flexibility for warehouses and production sites.

LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging)

LiDAR is an advanced navigation technology that uses sensors transmitting laser pulses to measure distances between the robot and objects in the environment. This data is compiled into a 360-degree map of the environment, enabling AGVs to navigate within facilities and avoid obstacles without the need for additional infrastructure.

Selecting the Right Automated Guided Vehicles in Warehouse: 5 Questions

With so many variations of AGVs and navigation systems on the market, potential adopters may feel overwhelmed. Before making a decision, here are some important questions to consider.

Goods Type

Whether automated guided vehicles in warehouse need to be handle light or heavy goods is an important question to answer, as different types of AGVs have unique load capacities. For heavy goods, a customized AGV may be necessary.

Navigation Type

Depending on the environment in which the AGVs will operate, such as wet, cold, interactive with manual operators, the type of navigation system implementation will vary.

Level of Accuracy

Ensure that your AGVs are equipped with the appropriate level of accuracy to protect goods and avoid potential damages.

Compatibility with Company Logistics Systems

As AGVs are part of automated logistics systems, their compatibility with the existing logistics systems used by the company, such as warehouse management systems, is crucial.

Safety Equipment

You can equip your AGVs with detection sensors that will stop movement when encountering obstacles. Sound and visual elements can also be built in to enhance the safety of operations. Choosing AGVs with complete safety equipment will help ensure smooth and safe warehouse operations.

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