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AS/RS serves as automated library.

When planning its new campus, Grand Valley State University evaluated various ways to efficiently handle its library boos. It chose an automated storage and retrieval system (AS/RS). This system is one of five similar miniload AS/RS in use in libraries in the U.S.

This miniload has a single mobile crane with extractor operating in an aisle of a vault with compactly filled rectangular metal bins. The crane travels horizontally along its embedded floor rail at 12.6 feet per second and moves vertically at 4.3 feet per second. A bin can be piced up and stored, and another bin retrieved from the rear to the front of the system in less than a minute.

The vault is secured with a loced entrance and emergency stops because of the speed of the crane in motion. The university can store up to 250,000 boos in only 1,500 square feet. On conventional library shelving, storage of the same number of boos would require over 25,000 square feet of space.

Three stations attended by library staff control the system. When a station operator processes a boo request, the crane locates the requested boo's bin number in only 70 seconds, retrieves the bin, and delivers it to the station.

An operator then processes the arrival of a carrier, and follows instructions on a monitor screen to identify and retrieve the correct item. The item's bar code is scanned to signal its removal from the system's inventory, and a pic slip is printed out and inserted into the boo.

The crane extracts bins of up to 350 pounds from the miniload. This system is not only quic and efficient, but also quiet.

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Title Annotation:automated storage and retrieval system
Comment:AS/RS serves as automated library.(automated storage and retrieval system)
Publication:Modern Materials Handling
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Oct 15, 2001
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