RETROFIT : Improving orchestra's logistics flows with a fully automated network of conveyors and a tray sorter
Orchestra Prémaman is a chain of maternity and children’s clothing and nursery accessories shops.
Founded in 1995, the company is based in the south of France. It currently employs 2,500 people. Orchestra has around 300 shops, mainly in France, Belgium and Switzerland. In 2020, Orchestra Prémaman decided to centralise its logistics activities in Arras in a 120,000 m² warehouse, with the aim of strengthening its digital activity by 2024.
To meet its production targets, Orchestra Prémaman decided to move its warehouse from Saint Aunès, in the south of France, to Arras by completely reorganising its sorting and conveyor system. The sorter and conveyors have been fully optimised and automated to manage order preparation, shop replenishment and returns with a high degree of precision and a rapid production rate.
TRANSITIC installed a kilometre-long conveyor network and an automatic tray sorter adapted to the fashion industry.
Automatic tray sorter
The automatic sorter was already present in Orchestra’s former warehouse. It was dismantled and then fully optimised and modernised by our teams, in close partnership with Equinox MHE. By reusing an existing machine, Orchestra is reducing its costs and its environmental impact.
To meet our customer’s new objectives, several technical features were revised:
– The sorter is now equipped with double-tilt trays and optical scanners that automatically identify items and redirect them to their assigned stations. Once at their destination, the trays open and deposit the items directly into their container: bin, bag, box, etc.
– The size of items sorted has been increased, and the machine can now handle cartons as well as clothing and fashion accessories.
– Tilting plates have been added to the output stations under the tilting trays, allowing products to be directed into two separate containers. This optimises the total number of containers in the system.
– The sorter has been reinstalled with 8 injection stations allowing operators to enter items according to their connected display. All the stations are equipped with Pick-to-Light and Put-to-Light systems, which guide operators through their actions and minimise the risk of errors.
At maximum speed, the sorter can process up to 14,400 items per hour.
”Results: The automatic tray sorter improves item flow and human error is reduced to a minimum. The sorter processes more than 150,000 items a day to replenish shops and send e-commerce orders. The wide, oval shape optimises the space available.."
In addition to the automatic sorter, a vast network of overhead and flat conveyors has been installed, complemented by two telescopic conveyors that unload the lorries and automatically feed the conveyors.
These conveyors generate flows that distribute the parcels to different parts of the warehouse:
– Distribution of packs to the 8 stations for storage in the racks
– Feeding of the sorting comb at reception
– Automatic feeding of the sorter
– Recirculation of empty bins and feeding of stations
– Feeding of the sorting comb in the e-commerce area
”Results: Warehouse space is used to its full potential. The fully automated system, linked to the control software, ensures continuity, regularity and performance monitoring."