Efficiency and Optimization, Up to the Last Mile

It’s called Last Mile Management the simple and intuitive solution for internal logistics developed by Bossard for the management of the so-called “Last Mile” from the central storage locations up to the assembly work cells. Such a method, fully compliant with Industry 4.0 standards, makes it possible to optimize the supply of assembly stations also due to the integration of mobile robots.

by Leonardo Albino

Successful companies are constantly striving to optimize and automate their supply chain processes. Approaches such as Kaizen (continuous improvement) and lean concepts are already being implemented in many manufacturing facilities.
Bossard offers a methodology that brings supply of assembly stations up to Industry 4.0 standard – optimized, automated and paperless. A simple solution that can be adapted to all industrial production plants, even those currently do not have 4.0 applications in use.
Bossard’s Last Mile Management (LMM) is a simple solution for internal logistics. It refers to the so-called “Last Mile” from the central storage locations up to the assembly work cells. Usually, the material controller, often called the “milk runner” or “water spider” supplies B and C parts to the various assembly work cells.
The milk runner walks from one assembly workstation to another in order to replenish the material. Thanks to Bossard’s LMM intelligent systems, the milkrunner benefits from a more efficient and optimized replenishment process.

The help comes from mobile robots
A mobile robot can be used to further optimize and automate supply paths in the internal logistics. The “milk runner” uses the digital configuration list to efficiently retrieve from the warehouse or supermarket. After the trolley with its boxes has been filled, LMM informs the Autonomous Mobile Robot (AMR) that the trolley is ready to be picked up.
The mobile robot picks up the trolley and, depending on the production setup, takes it directly to the various assembly stations.
The mobile robot uses integrated sensors and cameras to detect the surrounding environment and safely bypasses obstacles and people. Operators who were previously involved in internal handling activities are now free for value-added activities.
This reduces delivery bottlenecks and downtime. Last Mile Management provides an interface for mobile robots so that Bossard can fully support its customers on their way to a Smart Factory.
Among the benefits of the solution developed by Bossard are: optimization of the material flow and reduction of movements in internal logistics; real-time consumption data for each work cell; increased efficiency and transparency due to shorter order and delivery times; high reliability and flexibility in reconfigurations.