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    Fast access, plenty of storage space in a small footprint, rapid material availability with accurate and economical inventory control, immediate stock overview, flexible storage – these are just a few demands from small, medium and large companies that need to store and retrieve stock efficiently. To meet these needs, KASTO offers an extensive range of automated warehousing and manually controlled storage systems for long stock and sheet material – http://www.kasto.com/uk/products/storage-systems/storage-systems.html

    The product spectrum starts with small tower storage systems, type KASTOunitower, the stacking cradle KASTOunibloc and then, depending on demand, in-line storage systems such as KASTOuniline or honeycomb storage systems KASTOunigrip and KASTOunicompact. All these automated storage systems are modular in design, based on standardised components, and are delivered tailor-made in different versions according to the number of storage locations needed.

    KASTOunitower single or double sided systems are designed for lower volume storage. They have a small footprint for a high capacity, with tower heights up to 25 metres. Versatility of use is enhanced because storage is possible on cassettes, on pallets or on special slave pallets. Loads between 1 and 5 tonnes per storage location can be accommodated.

    KASTOunibloc systems are intended for manual or automatic handling of stacking cradles, several at the same time, up to 5 metres high. They are designed for material lengths from 6 to 24 metres and for maximum loads of 6 or 9 tonnes per cradle. 20 picks per hour are possible.

    KASTOuniline is designed for single-deep, flexible, longitudinal storage of cassettes or pallets of sheet material, from small to extra-large. Ideal for narrow buildings, the modular block design starts at 200 storage locations and system heights can reach 25 metres. The system can either be of silo construction with roof and wall cladding to save warehouse space, or a stand-alone unit in existing buildings.

    KASTOunigrip and KASTOunicompact storage systems are designed as two adjacent storage blocks in honeycomb design with an operating gantry crane moving between them. Very high storage density and fast access to stock due to short travel distances are hallmarks of the designs. Storage solutions with more than 500 locations for cassettes or pallets and system heights up to 30 metres are offered, with highly-dynamic crane movement for up to 60 picks per hour.

    To complement its range of automated storage systems, highly functional KASTOlogic control systems have an intuitive graphical user interface, an interface to the customer’s host computer system and a dashboard for overall visualisation of warehouse management. In addition to the standard module, customers can choose from various additions. One is material flow, which oversees dynamic random storage and real-time restocking and provides 3D simulation and statistical information including of gantry movement. Bottlenecks are detected and the system’s full potential can be exploited by adjustment strategies.

    Inventory management is broken down into three sub-groups: logistics, for optimising routes within the warehouse; production, for providing an overview of orders and machine utilisation; and manual storage, for managing non-automated areas of a warehouse and manually operated equipment. Machines and handling systems with a higher level of automation may be included and comprehensive statistics are available for system analysis. An automation function allows a comprehensive overview of connected production machinery.



    Pipe Center, one of the UK’s leading suppliers of heating, pipe and related products to the commercial and industrial building services industry, uses a bespoke, 3,332-location KASTOunicompact 4.0 automated warehouse in its distribution centre (DC) in Measham, Derbyshire, the newest and most technologically advanced distribution operation in the supply chain of parent company, Wolseley UK. The 142,000 sq ft, cassette-type tube storage facility provides dynamic goods-to-man presentation for efficient picking, reducing manual handling and enabling Pipe Center to provide next-day delivery across its entire network.

    The warehouse structure, which required the installation of 182 drive piles to provide deep foundations, has boosted storage capacity by 20 per cent compared with the previous operation, which relied on storage of long stock using a mixture of cantilever racking and bulk stacking. There was also a separate section for small parts and an area for pallet storage.

    The KASTO system has reduced the distance operatives have to move when picking, speeding the consolidation of orders. The warehouse design also increases the height used for storage of Pipe Center’s SKUs (stock keeping units). The consequently reduced footprint represented significant cost savings.

    The KASTO control interfaces with Measham’s HighJump warehouse management system, which offers superior tracking and traceability of inventory, further maximising efficiencies and reducing costs. The resulting optimised storage and picking coupled with improved stock management allows an even broader range of products to be stored at Measham and delivered to the branch network. The portfolio includes Bondloc, Geberit, Ideal Stelrad, Spirax Sarco and Marla Tube Fittings, underlining Pipe Center’s status as the market-leading distributor of such products.

    Each cassette is 7 metres long and 3,332 of them are arranged in 78 blocks horizontally and 22 rows vertically to a height of 12 metres on both sides of a central area, along which a picking crane travels on rails. Some locations are not filled due to the presence of building columns. The width of the installation in the warehouse is just over 22 metres and the length is nearly 80 metres. The top seven rows contain cassettes measuring 645 mm high, the very top location being 40 mm deeper still, while the lower 15 rows house 435 mm high cassettes. All are 770 mm wide and accept material up to 6.8 metres long.

    The crane travels with two cassettes weighing up to 4,150 kg each between the store locations and three input/output stations, extracting and / or returning material at up to 160 m/min longitudinally and 40 m/min vertically. These motions are performed simultaneously for maximum productivity, while cassette pulling and return speed is up to 80 m/min.

    Andy Wighton, Managing Director of Pipe Centre and Climate Center said, “We have created one of the most dynamic and advanced distribution centres in the industry that will help us achieve customer service excellence.

    “Measham DC is ideally placed geographically and fits with our supply chain strategy to operate as efficiently as possible. It optimises our distribution capability for Pipe Centre and Climate Center so we can offer our customers next day delivery and accommodates our exciting growth ambitions for the next 10 to 15 years.”

    KASTO Ltd, Unit 5, Garamonde Drive, Wymbush, Milton Keynes, MK8 8DF.

    Tel: +44 (0)1908 571590.  Fax: +44 (0)1908 566106

    Email: sales@uk.kasto.com   Web: www.kasto.com

    Contact: Ernst Wagner, Managing Director.


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