High-performance sorters guide parcels from warehouse to loading bay in distribution centers

Order-related picking with sorter systems from TRAPO AG

Fast delivery times and cost savings in the area of packing are decisive for competitiveness in distribution centers. There, goods are picked according to customers and orders before they start their journey to their destination, sometimes over several thousand kilometers. In online retailing in particular, success depends on the speed, correctness and integrity of the products to be shipped. Modern sorter systems act at the heart of distribution: they take on crucial functions in controlling and diverting flows of goods and assign parcel shipments their route from the warehouse to the loading zone in order to distribute the parcels efficiently and precisely on their way to the recipient. With the TRAPO Omni Sorter and the TRAPO Sphere Sorter, TRAPO AG, partner for industrial automation, offers two highly-flexible solutions that help to maintain supply chains without disruptions even in challenging times.

In a globalized world, where producers and end-consumers are often separated by continents and time zones, logistics play a crucial role. Only with well-functioning distribution is it possible for complex transport chains with various (intermediate) stations to interlock seamlessly. Any incorrect assignment of the goods to be transported leads to a disruption in the flow of materials and has a negative impact on competitiveness and corporate success.

Controlling complex flows of goods

The use of sorters is always advantageous when product units originating from one or more sources have to be distributed to one or even more destinations. Sorters show the goods the right way in distribution centers, ensure an uninterrupted flow of materials and thus assume a connecting function in the logistics´ process chain. With their help, goods can be separated according to orders, sorted, brought together and finally assigned to the right destination. Areas of application include goods receiving, for example, when unloading trucks or containers for onward transport of products to the warehouse, the order picking area during batch picking, and goods issue when compiling tours and loading trucks.

In practice, a potential customer browsing the online department store discovers products they are ordering; for example, a blouse, athletic shoes, deli items and books. As soon as the mail order company receives the order, the picking process starts in the high-bay warehouse. The first step is to capture the barcode, feed the products via lines, and move the goods coming from different sources to the destination, packaging, and final loading by truck.

The TRAPO Omni Sorter handles packages of all sizes and types – whether the goods are packed in cartons, bags or envelopes. Order-related picking and diverting is performed employing sorter systems so that the customer receives the goods in the swiftest-possible manner.

In the food sector, too, manufacturers make no compromises when it comes to production – of coffee, for example. TRAPO AG offers a one-stop solution for palletizing and packaging according to priority lists, which also includes sorters. As part of the high-performance packaging line, products are picked, carefully packed in cardboard boxes, palletized and secured for transport. During this process, the high-performance layer palletizer is supplied by spherical conveyor belts, the TRAPO Sphere Sorter (TSS series): they ensure that the products are evenly distributed to the palletizers. By breaking up the rigid operation by the sorters, lines can be diverted at any time – ensuring optimum capacity utilization. If, for example, a palletizer requires maintenance, the product can alternatively be diverted via the sorter lines.

Completion of the entire line

With the TRAPO Omni Sorter and the TRAPO Sphere Sorter, TRAPO AG offers two sorter systems that ensure trouble-free material flow. The goods can be forwarded and discharged onto different transport rails during transport with the help of rotating conveyor rollers.

The TRAPO Omni Sorter acts as a connecting element between individual conveyor sections. It is named after the high throughput of up to 5000 packages per hour: TRAPO Omni Sorter 5000 (TOS series). As a connecting element between conveyor sections, the TOS can discharge products on both sides. Goods passing through the TOS are either transported further by its rollers or discharged by swiveling the rollers at a 45 or 30 degree angle to the left or right.

With the TRAPO Sphere Sorter (TSS), TRAPO AG offers a precise sorter for forwarding, turning, distributing and ejecting packages. The basis is a conveyor belt in which spheres are incorporated. The balls protrude from the top and bottom of the chain. When the chain moves from left to right during operation, the balls move with it. This movement results in doubling the speed at which the material is transported on the belt. This sorter is used to handle a wide variety of packages, something from boxes, parcels, packages to letters.

With a speed of up to one meter per second, the TTS proves to be extremely flexible – it can be moved to any width and length. It can turn and distribute packages arriving from multiple infeed lines to multiple outlets.

Thanks to their modular design, both sorter systems can be adapted to different on-site conditions, allowing flexible and multiple-configuration options within the given production space. The result is optimal space utilization and smooth onward transport of the goods.

Flexible and space-saving sorter solution

The TRAPO Sphere sorter ensures precise forwarding, rotation, distribution and ejection of packages of various sizes, such as boxes, parcels and letters. It can flexibly rotate and distribute conveyed goods to multiple outlets at speeds of up to one meter per second. The sorter can be implemented in any width and length and at the same time requires comparatively limit space, as it combines several functions.

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