The smart storage system to boost productivity

During the recent Productronica edition, a standout solution showcased at the Munich exhibition with a dedicated LED wall was the ISM Buffer Module.

But what exactly do we mean when we talk about the “Buffer solution,” and how can it help us?

While we acknowledge that the subject may appear routine and instructional to industry professionals, we aim to offer clarity for individuals navigating the challenges of inefficient production processes, particularly within the supply chain of electronic assembly companies, amidst times of ‘excess inventory.’ We cater to those actively seeking tangible and effective solutions.

The illustrative video presented during the Munich fair can introduce us to the topic.

A Common Scenario

Many companies in the electronic industry use the Kanban system to control inventories and material supply. While this system is effective in reducing downtime in production lines and avoiding unnecessary costs, its effectiveness largely depends on the implemented system and workforce.

What is the Buffer?

The Buffer is an advanced software function developed by Essegi Automation. It allows the use of the automatic storage towers of the Ultraflex series as an advanced Kanban system between the general warehouse and the production lines, but in a fully automated manner.

The software acts as an interface, managing the exchange of information between the main warehouse and the areas of ISM towers assigned within the production area, based on work orders and production plans.

The Buffer module is designed to handle a predefined time interval of several weeks of production and multiple storage zones. The software automatically updates work orders at regular intervals (adjustable as needed, usually every 4 hours) and highlights any component shortages to complete production, sending an immediate request to the main warehouse.

How does the Buffer work?

It’s evident that such an advanced system must be able to seamlessly communicate with ERP systems and material acceptance stations. This is possible thanks to the integration capability of Essegi Automation’s ISM systems with all the most common management software used in electronic assembly companies.

The system maintains a smooth communication with other management systems to calculate minimum and maximum inventories, safety levels, make automatic requests to the general warehouse to avoid running out of stock, and deliver components to production lines automatically.

Material can be moved between the general warehouse and areas with ISM towers either by operators or using AMRs for greater efficiency.

Similar to other intelligent storage systems developed by Essegi Automation, the Buffer module is designed to optimize the utilization of ISM towers and enhance productivity in material handling processes. Materials are stored in controlled environments, ensuring ideal humidity and temperature conditions.

This is how the Buffer system significantly contributes to optimizing production processes in electronic assembly companies, reducing downtime in material delivery to production lines, human errors, unforeseen events, and plan changes, while increasing production by avoiding line stops due to material shortages.