Automated Materials Handling

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Automated return conveyor runs through ceiling plenum
Conveyor runs across ceiling in children's area. Outside book return is on outside wall. Conveyor behind the protective cage carries items up to ceiling and across to next room.
Lyngsoe conveyor runs through ceiling of children's area and into workroom. San Diego (City) Library

Conveyors

20 Pins
This is a close-up look at the unstacker working.  Delivery staff delivery a stack of totes to it (via handtruck) and the unit takes care of unstacking each one and loading it into a rack until it is time to sort.
This video shows the layout of a central sorting operation.  Note the loading dock for backing up delivery trucks.  Stacks of totes are taken to the unstacker (silver unit in the center) and then each tote is stored into the huge rack in the background until it is time to sort it.

Warehouse Logistics and Automated Storage and Retrieval

9 Pins
$3500-$5000 Lift Stik. Available from https://www.southern-tool.com/store/Presto_Lift_Stik_Lifter_Transporter.php and PrestoLift in the US.  With capacities ranging from 185 lbs to over 400 lbs, there's almost nothing these sleek, attractive, user-friendly machines can't do. A continuous lifting chain provides two vertical travel speeds with smooth starts and stops. It also allows for precise load positioning with zero drift.
This is The Mule Mobile Stack and Work Positioner.  It can be configured in lots of different ways.  Note the nice big wheels for easy maneuverability and the arms that lift the totes (so you don' t have to slide anything under a stack.  More info here: http://www.cisco-eagle.com/catalog/c-1361-portable-stacker.aspx.  Start around $5,000
PV Supa Tote Lifter.  Designed to fit on the sorter and adjust height as items are dropped in

Tote Carriers

3 Pins
Standard TechLogic bins and totes on TechLogic sorter - print and apply machine on top applies Hold slips
Drive-up book return at Richland Public (TechLogic)
TechLogic sorter at Chicago Public with a combination of bins (e.g. black standard bins in foreground), big moveable trolleys (blue CPL trolley), SmartBins (third position) and totes (not seen in this picture

Central Sorters for Interlibrary Delivery

26 Pins
This is the PV Supa sorter at Aahrus Library.  The video shows their automatic induction process.  This station can be used by a human or a human can place the stack at the induction station while he or she goes around the sorter to replace empty totes and check on things.
This is another view of the unloader on the PV Supa sorter at Aarhus Library (Denmark). Using this unloader, they are able to sort 1.7 million items every year (about 50 sort destinations) with just 1-3 people working the sorter at any one time.  And the product is super simple without a bunch of moving parts.  Kind of an elegant low tech solution.
Stacking shelf that inducts items one-at-a-time onto the sorter so staff don't have to stand there and do it. Its an elegant simple solution without a lot of moving parts.

Unloaders/Staff Induction

7 Pins
Product introduction Ergo Bin and Ergo Cart - YouTube
Lyngsoe Library Mater Mini Sorter with trolleys
mk Solutions - Stacking carts for sorting directly to bookcarts to use for shelving

Receptacles for Sorters

18 Pins
Tech-Logic sorter at Santa Clara City Library (one of their earlier models)
Singulator «  FE Technologies. So far this product and TechLogic's Throw-n-Go solution are the only two products on the market that do the singulating of returned items so patrons don't have to return items one at a time.
A book falls into an awaiting bin during a demonstration of the automated material handling system given at the Robert Hoag Rawlings Rawlings Public Library by circulation manager Janina Goodwin. The system can handle approximately 750 pieces of media per hour using a radio-antenna system that communicates with the library's database.

Singulator

5 Pins
Google's experiment, BookBot.  Essentially a traveling book drop. Currently being test out in Mountain View, California.
Sorter inside door of library.  Self check-in sits on old service desk with sorter visible behind desk (but in front of work room area)
Cheap Thrills: Hoover Library’s Mechanical Book Return/Sorter | BirminghamMom.com

Patron Returns

14 Pins
two white bookcases with red and white books on them, one is open
Intelligent Return Shelving | Bibliotheca Returns Solutions
Love smart return shelves - patrons return to shelf, check-in just happens. Only glitch is when a return triggers a Hold. In this case, a Hold Slip is generated at staff station and staff have to go grab the item from the shelf before someone tries to check it out. Not ideal but not terrible. Still wish items returned to these shelves could be exempt from triggering Holds (as an option).
an empty room with lots of machines and shelves on the wall, in front of a clock
Sort destinations around the room
Usually you see sorters running through the middle of the room. But if you need to use that space, they can be configured around the edges of the room with bins just on one side. It's a bit more costly but might be worth it if you need that center space.
TechLogi Chicago, Black, Blue
TechLogic sorter at Chicago Public with a combination of bins (e.g. black standard bins in foreground), big moveable trolleys (blue CPL trolley), SmartBins (third position) and totes (not seen in this picture
a man standing in front of a book shelf filled with books
Product introduction Ergo Bin and Ergo Cart
Product introduction Ergo Bin and Ergo Cart - YouTube
people are working in an office setting with many black bins
Standard TechLogic bins and totes on TechLogic sorter - print and apply machine on top applies Hold slips
a silver box sitting on the side of a road next to a parking lot filled with cars
Drive-up book return at Richland Public (TechLogic)
TechLogi
TechLogic sorter at Chicago Public with a combination of bins (e.g. black standard bins in foreground), big moveable trolleys (blue CPL trolley), SmartBins (third position) and totes (not seen in this picture
TechLogic sorter at Chicago Public using a combination of totes and SmartBins Outdoor, Grey, Gas Grill, Big
TechLogic sorter at Chicago Public with a combination of SmartBins (black bookdrop bin in foreground), and totes (grey). There are also big moveable trolleys (not seen in this picture) used at some sort destinations.
an automated conveyor belt in a factory
Lyngsoe Ergo Feeder
Lyngsoe Ergo Feeder - YouTube
several bins are lined up against the wall
Cedarbrae
Cedarbrae Branch automatic returns sorter opening day Dec 6, 2010.
several stacks of books are stacked on top of each other in front of computers and desks
Library Sorter Loader
Stacking shelf that inducts items one-at-a-time onto the sorter so staff don't have to stand there and do it. Its an elegant simple solution without a lot of moving parts. Impressive product from PV Supa.
Unstacking Totes
This is a close-up look at the unstacker working. Delivery staff delivery a stack of totes to it (via handtruck) and the unit takes care of unstacking each one and loading it into a rack until it is time to sort.
Library Sorting and Distribution Center
This video shows the layout of a central sorting operation. Note the loading dock for backing up delivery trucks. Stacks of totes are taken to the unstacker (silver unit in the center) and then each tote is stored into the huge rack in the background until it is time to sort it.
NYPL Automated Storage and Retrieval System
a man in an orange shirt is opening the door to a machine with his hands
Konecranes Agilon material handling and management system
Konecranes Agilon material handling and management system - coming soon to a library near you? I hope so! Stay tuned!!