The Benefits of Vertical Lift Modules

When Vidir Vertical Storage Solutions planned to release a new vertical lift module (VLM) into the marketplace, they knew they wanted someone with VLM experience to help them make their latest solution a success. Enter Tim Harrison. Harrison, a VLM Industry veteran since 2005, knows all of the ins and outs that make VLMs a powerful addition to any inventory management system.

In his roles within the VLM industry, Harrison sold, and project managed VLMs, vertical carousels, horizontal carousels, and their software. “When I started, people were not familiar with VLMs, and the market really was unsaturated,” Harrison said. “Even today, the market is not saturated in the United States. And that’s evident in conversations the respective clients, and the overall growth of VLMs in the United States.”

The VLM industry began its focus on MRO applications, tool cribs, and POV storage, but now the distribution world is starting to see this type of solution’s potential. The reason? “We are now turning our focus into each picking,” Harrison said. “Instead of distribution centers simply pulling a pallet in and pushing a pallet out, we’re now getting into that granular level of the each. When a customer gets on their website, they want that single item, that one light bulb or one of a product, and that has dramatically changed how distribution centers operate.” These needs require a lot more moving of pallets and bins in a distribution center, and that’s where VLMs shine.

There are only a couple of VLM players in the US market, but that is poised to change with Vidir’s new VLM launched in July. One of Vidir’s solution differences is their VLM uses server motors instead of a standard gearbox and motor setup. “That provides a higher precision for placing trays in and out of their locations, increased reliability, and durability in general,” Harrison said.

Servo motors allow maximum movement speeds to be consistent across all weight capacities, overcoming the limitations of these other setups where you pick either weight capacity or speed, but you don’t get both.

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