Optimize your storage costs with narrow aisle AGVs

Optimize your storage costs with narrow aisle AGVs

Home > Ideas > Automation > Optimize your storage costs with narrow aisle AGVs

Narrow aisle AGVs can help reduce one of the biggest burdens of warehouses: rental costs. According to Zedi Consulting, warehouse rental costs account for an average of more than 30% of operating costs. In China, a study from Colliers International shows that the average rent in 2020 was 1.04 RMB/㎡/day. For warehouses in first-tier core logistics cities, this price can be as high as 1.5 RMB/㎡/day.

In China’s warehousing operations today, most pallet beam racking areas use front-moving forklifts, which require an aisle width of 3.2 meters. Narrow aisle AGVs, however, only require an aisle width of 1.8 meters, which greatly improves space utilization and value per square meter.

narrow aisle agvs use less space
Rocla narrow aisle AGV operating area

Businesses can reduce rental costs by employing automated logistics equipment like Rocla’s narrow aisle AGVs to improve warehouse space utilization.

Rocla narrow aisle AGVs: a case study with four major benefits

The client is a third-party logistics provider with 32,000 m² of space in a highly automated logistics center near Oslo. They use nine Rocla VNA AGVs (narrow aisle AGVs) to transport pallets in very narrow aisle racking areas. They have found that narrow aisle AGVs provide a safer warehouse environment and lowering operating costs.

They saw four major benefits at their site:

1. Precision and efficiency

Nine Rocla VNA AGVs handle a racking area containing a total of 81,200 pallet positions, with a height of 10.65 meters. The AGVs move pallets in and out of the racks and place them on a conveyor. In only one hour, the AGVs’ can handle 173 pallets, each with a capacity of 1,000 kg.

2. Enhanced safety

Using Rocla AGVs in narrow aisle warehouses significantly reduces the risk of incorrect loading. AGVs are programmed to move loads precisely, with a low risk of pallets falling off. At the same time, automation reduces the need for manual labor, which in turn reduces the risk of serious accidents.

3. Reduced energy consumption

Not only do narrow aisle AGVs use less space, but they also use less energy. Compared to warehouses with manually operated equipment, the shelving areas where AGVs operate are cooler and require less light. This directly translates to lower energy consumption per month.

4. Integrated application of technology

Rocla VNA AGVs employ multiple methods of navigation: laser navigation in the main aisle and induction line navigation in narrow aisles. Every narrow aisle AGV comes equipped with a triple mast and lateral telescopic forks. Combining these technologies and Rocla’s modular design, warehouse managers see greatly improved project delivery times. The ROI also comes much sooner for a three-shift warehouse operating at full capacity.

Rocla narrow aisle AGVs: product performance

Rocla’s VNA AGVs are equipped with a slewing mechanism for the three-sided steering of the forks. The forks handle the pallet load in three directions: to either side and directly to the rear. While changing the direction of the load, they perform both steering and side shifting movements to minimize space requirements. They also come with sensors that detect the presence or absence of loads on the racks and pallets on the forks.

ASAP Rental and Rocla: automating China’s warehouses since 2017

ASAP Rental and Aprolis have been cooperating with Rocla in the international market for more than 20 years. They expanded into the automated handling equipment market in China in 2017. With several Rocla AGV projects already completed or underway, ASAP Rental knows the ins-and-outs of helping businesses in China to upgrade their intelligent manufacturing operations.

Get in contact with us today to see how we can help you automate your handling.

More insights