Automated material handling system: An epitome of efficiency

  • Industry News
  • Jun 29,22
The desire for effective material flow between facilities, the expansion of infrastructure projects, and manufacturers' propensity to upgrade their current product lines are all contributing to the growth of the global market for material handling gear. Trishna Mirajkar investigates the value of automated material handling devices.
Automated material handling system: An epitome of efficiency

Around 50% of the world's population currently resides in cities and by 2050, that number is projected to rise to 70%. This implies that clients will become more concentrated in fewer places for the majority of enterprises, which will increase demand for warehouse management systems.

For instance, in the e-commerce sector, smart and connected items and materials sensors work together to ensure delivery and to provide the right amount of goods at the right price to the ideal location at the right time. The internet of things includes these highlights (IoT). Such IoT data can be integrated with a WMS to help manage the direction of the objects from their starting place to their destination. With this inclusion, associations are given the ability to develop pull-based supply chains rather than push-based supply chains.

The advent of superior technologies including, hands-free communication systems, Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) and introduction of high-level software such as, warehouse management system (WMS) facilitates the smoother flow of goods and reduces error in operations.

Talking about their activities Vishnu Bhagwat, General Manager, Cascade India Material Handling Pvt Ltd said, “We are founded in 1989 in Pune, India. One of the top producers, importers, and suppliers of a wide variety of highly effective fork positioners, paper roll clamps, push-pulls, carton clamps, rotators, multiple load handlers, layer pickers, hydraulic & electrical systems, custom products, hydraulic buckets, brick handler clamps, etc. is Cascade India Material Handling Pvt Ltd. Under the supervision of our qualified personnel, the provided items are produced in compliance with international quality standards utilising premium raw materials and cutting-edge technology. We buy the raw materials from reputable suppliers in the sector in order to create these products. Our products are widely used in the electronics, engineering, appliance, beverage, and warehousing industries. Due to their sturdy structure, these products are in high demand across the nation.”

Discussing about the working of his enterprise Anil Lingayat, Executive Vice President & Business Head, Godrej Material Handling, elaborates, “Godrej Material Handling set up shop in 1963. As we scaled, so did our ability to deliver customised solutions crafted with careful consideration of the evolving intra-warehouse needs of our clients. Our many years of experience led us to understand Indian conditions better. So, while we provide you with the best of products, we also uniquely equip them to adapt to your local conditions. The result is unparalleled productivity even in the most demanding situations.”           

Sakthivarman R, VP-Operations of Snowman Logistics Limited, mentions his course of action as follows: “Snowman is India’s leading integrated temperature-controlled logistics service provider, specializing in providing warehousing, distribution, and other value-add services across the country. Our state-of-the-art temperature- controlled warehousing facilities in prime locations like Mumbai, Chennai, and Bengaluru coupled with our integrated distribution solutions, allow us to ensure product quality and temperature integrity of customers’ products from point of origin to the consumption point.”

Automated material handling

Automated material handling technology eliminates the need for human intervention in the material handling process, enhances processing accuracy, ensures worker safety, and increases warehouse efficiency. Robotics systems, conveyor systems, automated storage and retrieval systems, and automated controlled vehicles are just a few examples of the various automated material handling equipment goods that are extremely well-liked all over the world. Additionally, the numerous automated material handling tools are frequently employed in both developed and developing nations in the processing of food and beverages, in e-commerce and retail, and elsewhere.

Additionally, rising focus on the development of compact, energy-efficient, affordable material handling solutions by major automated material handling manufacturers and expanding e-commerce sector across the globe.

“Automated material handling equipment puts a focus on productivity, safety, accuracy, consistency, operational efficiency, turnaround times, and deskilling and allows 24x7x365 operations if needed. It produces a safer and more comfortable working environment, which boosts productivity. It lowers the cost of handling and the time it takes to deliver a shipment. Traffic intensity, staging congestion, and other concerns are addressed and alleviated using flexible methods. The optimal system also ensures precision and control. There is less risk of looking for misplaced items, mishaps, or damaged products when inventory is in the correct place at the right time.” remarked Anil.

An automatic guided vehicle (AGV), also called autonomous mobile robot (AMR), is a portable robot that follows along marked long lines or wires on the floor, or uses radio waves, vision cameras, magnets, or lasers for navigation. They are most often used in industrial applications to transport heavy materials around a large industrial building, such as a factory or warehouse. Over the years the technology has become more sophisticated and today automated vehicles are mainly Laser navigated e.g. LGV (Laser Guided Vehicle). In an automated process, LGVs are programmed to communicate with other robots to ensure product is moved smoothly through the warehouse, whether it is being stored for future use or sent directly to shipping areas. Today, the AGV plays an important role in the design of new factories and warehouses, safely moving goods to their rightful destination.

AGVs used in Warehouses and Distribution Centers logically move loads around the warehouses and prepare them for shipping/loading or receiving or move them from an induction conveyor to logical storage locations within the warehouse. Often, this type of use is accompanied by customized warehouse management software.

In reference to the discussion about AGV, Vishnu Bhagwat added, “Automatic Guided Vehicle can be elaborated as modern warehousing & logistics companies are getting benefits in terms of minimal labour/manual interventions & maximum throughput. It has higher efficiency, can increase the storage cubic capacity with high rise storage where man has limitations in terms of safety (EHS) norms.

“Automation has recently shown to be a powerful tool for firms looking to streamline their operations. Automated material handling equipment solutions are advantageous in a number of ways, including by increasing efficiency and dependability for consumers and by enabling cost optimization in businesses. They aid in lowering labour costs and labour dependence, improving data and operational transparency, handling e-commerce and customised operations better, and managing warehousing during peak seasonal demand.” Sakthivarman remarked with regard to the subject of automated material handling.    

Latest trends and technologies

With the coronavirus still shadowing everyday life, a great deal of uncertainty hangs over the material handling industry. Yet, the industry can’t wait for that uncertainty to clear before making the investments required to enable supply chains to adapt to the changes occurring in the market. There has been a general trend toward smaller order sizes in recent years and, in 2022, that trend continues as centralized pallet and case warehouses begin to integrate individual item picking into their operations. This trend will be driven by the continuing evolution of the retail landscape and the move into direct-to-consumer sales by manufacturers.

The result will be the transformation of many warehouses as they integrate new processes and technologies to enable efficient item picking. Goods-to-person technologies, such as cube-based automated storage and retrieval systems and mobile autonomous robots will find a home in warehouses that had previously only supported pallet and case handling.

This trend will also accelerate the adoption of robotic item picking systems. This technology offers compelling benefits for material handling operations as it has the potential to fully automate the picking process, helping operators adapt to labour shortages and cost pressures

Speaking about latest trends, Vishnu mentioned, “By looking at the demand of achieving the maximum throughput, it’s inevitable to have a modern process of materials handling for which Cascade Corp USA has already developed the attachments to suit with the Automatic Guided Vehicle (AGV) where machines are running for 24x7 operations without human interference.  Also by looking at the environmental conditions on energy conservation, we have launched forklift attachments that are working on the principle of "Electric Energy” where one can reduce the wear & tear as well loss of energy.

For large volume retailers this has made in-store, manual fulfilment impractical in many locations. Picking in-store is inefficient, expensive, and creates congestion that can alienate in-store shoppers. While a few large grocers have made the leap to automated micro-fulfilment centres (MFCs) and e-fulfilment centres (EFCs) to enable efficient order fulfilment close to customers, the majority of the market used 2021 to gain a better understanding of the complexities of e-grocery fulfilment and begin to implement the organizational changes required to support an MFC strategy in the future. As a result, 2022 will mark the year when virtually every major grocer finalizes their e-grocery strategy, and many will move into the execution phase using MFC automation.

“With more awareness of Green and Sustainability, this industry which was always more focused on Electric is further getting electrified and more and more customers of Material Handling are moving to the sustainable electric side giving long-term sustainability. We see the emergence of technology and AI in fleet management to improve productivity, safety, the behaviour of operators, etc. for enhancing workplace productivity, and safety.” said Anil.

The quick growth of gadgets opens up possibilities for connecting the disconnected in order to gain insights more quickly. IoT (Internet of Things) technologies provide fresh approaches for increasing productivity and creating new businesses with deeper insights.

Mentioning recent developments Sakthivarman R said, “Latest developments and trends in the material handling sector are a result of the intervention of technological and IOT-based solutions. These play a major role in automation, human-machine connectivity, thereby increasing productivity and accuracy in transactions and inventory. Data collection and data analytics help improve the efficiency of operations.”

The road ahead 

Increasing requirement of automation among various industries across the globe and rising adoption of automated material handling equipment among several industries are some of the major reasons for the high growth of the automated material handling equipment across the globe. In addition, growing industrialization across the globe and rising technological advancement in the automated material handling equipment are other reasons for high adoption of automated material handling equipment in developed and developing countries.

The material handling industry has seen unprecedented change over the last several years. Responding to those changes in real time was often an all-consuming task that delayed longer term planning. Now, as we enter 2022, many organizations will find they simply can’t stretch their available resources and systems any further. New distribution strategies and technologies are required to meet the challenges of today and to adapt to the unforeseen changes of the future.


Related Stories

Other Industrial Products
Atmanirbharta via green energy

Atmanirbharta via green energy

India has added new electricity connections for 50 million citizens each year over the past decade.

Read more
Policy Regulation
IPF’s 3i EXPO webinar: Vision 2025 for Indian manufacturing sector

IPF’s 3i EXPO webinar: Vision 2025 for Indian manufacturing sector

As part of 3i EXPO 2023 webinar series, Industrial Products Finder (IPF) organised a virtual panel discussion on the topic ‘Vision 2025 for Indian Manufacturing Sector’ to discuss challenges a..

Read more
Construction Equipment
Indian construction equipment industry up 23% in Q3 FY23

Indian construction equipment industry up 23% in Q3 FY23

Indian Construction Equipment Manufacturers’ Association (ICEMA), apex association for Construction Equipment (CE) manufacturers in India announced its Q3 FY23 results with shows sales grew by 23 ..

Read more

Related Products

Multi Tire


SCI Storage Solution offers a wide range of multi tire.

Read more

Request a Quote

Industrial Lifting Equipment


Rana Material Handling Equipments Pvt Ltd offers a wide range of industrial lifting equipment.

Read more

Request a Quote

Jib Cranes


HERC Material Handling LL offers a wide range of jib cranes.

Read more

Request a Quote

Hi There!

Now get regular updates from IPF Magazine on WhatsApp!

Click on link below, message us with a simple hi, and SAVE our number

You will have subscribed to our Industrial News on Whatsapp! Enjoy

+91 84228 74016

Reach out to us

Call us at +91 8108603000 or

Schedule a Call Back