HEB Grocery Company is one of the nation’s largest independently owned food retailers with stores throughout the southwest. HEB wanted to reduce outside storage and the cost of additional transportation and handling.

They thought to demolish a very old low height ambient warehouse and replace it with a high-rise freezer warehouse. Because this was as much a construction problem as a material handling problem, HEB contacted Dematic, the North American leader in the construction of high-rise rack supported buildings and material handling systems integrator.

The interior rows of rack of the 5 aisle ASRS are triple deep with pick tunnels on the bottom level between aisles. The outside rows of rack are double deep to minimize the overall width of the system. By using this configuration, Dematic was able to save one bay of the old warehouse, eliminating the need to relocate the existing refrigeration pipes. This also afforded an additional pick lane along the outside of the ASRS and space for additional selective pick rack. The ASRS was slightly recessed so that the pick tunnels would be at ground level.

Fast moving items are assigned to pick slots in the ASRS pick positions so that they can be replenished automatically by the Storage Retrieval Machine (SRMs). Slower moving items are dynamically slotted in the low bay selective rack.

The main input/output conveyors are located on a mezzanine to allow access to the pick tunnels from both ends of the storage system. Incoming loads will be staged on the receiving dock and then placed on conveyors leading to two lifts which take the pallets to the loop conveyor on the mezzanine level.

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