Clasimat® optimises warehouse space and reduces storage costs

The Clasimat® Vertical Lift Module (VLM) from Mecalux, a completely enclosed space-saving vertical automated storage system, is marketed, sold and serviced in southern Africa by APC Storage Solutions SA. It is designed to maximise warehouse storage capacity by optimising storage space through extendable heights in a compact manner which can drive down warehouse costs by up to as much as 30%.

This unique storage system uses compartments within the VLM which can reach heights of 15.4 m. As the VLM is a sealed unit, controlled via the Mecalux EasyWMS software, security and safety are enhanced beyond conventional storage. In addition, limited human interaction decreases any possible security issues as only one machine operator is required. This means the goods stored inside are protected from possible accidental impact and improper handling. The door, which opens only when merchandise is picked or delivered, consists of two downward sliding panels preventing access to the shuttle from the front.

“The totally sealable unit also prevents stored items from gathering dust and grime,” points out Fred Albrecht, APC Storage Solutions SA Managing Director. The Clasimat® can be used for storing all types of products generally stored in boxes, such as tools and electric components. Its high security value also makes it ideal for valuable or risky items including jewellery, pharmaceutical drugs, optical items and valuable documents, for example. “The Clasimat® location is determined by the clients,” Albrecht adds. “It can be stored practically anywhere from inside an established warehouse, replacing conventional racking where necessary, to an office environment, a pharmacy back-room and many more, as long as the chosen location has a ceiling of sufficient height to accommodate the elevation required.”


Space, time and labour saving


The Clasimat® VLM grows in height according to the number of goods needing storage, greatly reducing the surface area needed for the same quantity in a conventional warehouse.

Products are stored in the same trays in which they are shipped. The trays, a variation of 13, vary in size from 2 039 mm x 615 mm to 4 268 mm x 816 mm. The tray’s configuration can be open for a wide variety of medium to large size products, or used with dividers for small sized articles. Maximum loads per tray are 300 kg to 800 kg.


How it works


Racking comprises two multi-level sections on opposite sides of a movable lift unit which acts as a shuttle system picking and moving trays on the racks. An extractor and lift shuttle mechanism collects products in a quick and secure way and moves them to the best suited available location in the rack, or to the picking area. A robust structure, accommodating up to 60 tons, receives the load from the tray which rests on lateral guides within the rack structure, while optical security barriers protect the operator from the unit’s fast mechanical movements.

System operation is simple. The operator selects the required product on the control panel and the shuttle automatically moves vertically to the level where the product is stored, extracts the corresponding tray and returns it to the picking area.

“A long-term benefit of about 20% to 30% savings on monthly warehousing expenses can be achieved for warehouse managers employing the services of our Clasimat®. The work pace is increased as is correct storage accuracy; and shift lengths can be increased as automated power, not manpower, is used.” concludes Albrecht.