With the integration of the new mobile communications standard 5G at the in-house Technology Center in Giebelstadt, SSI SCHAEFER is setting new standards and is underlining their claim to shape the future of intralogistics as technology and innovation leader. For future customer projects based on 5G technology, this means seamless roaming, highest connectivity and optimized value-added processes. This paves the way for company-wide networking on a uniform platform along the whole supply chain.
Radio-based communication is increasing steadily in industry and logistics. Usually, it is conducted via WiFi frequency ranges for conventional ISM bands, the best known being WLAN and Bluetooth. Due to the constantly growing range of applications and participating devices as well as the different systems in use, the technology is limited in terms of latency, costs, reliability and participant density. Logical consequences are overloads, reciprocal interference, increasing susceptibility to failure and the lack of expansion opportunities to other processes.
In order to offer their customers the latest ideal intralogistics solutions, SSI SCHAEFER is advancing the development of 5G-based intralogistics with their own 5G project in their in-house Technology Center in Giebelstadt - from intelligent system control to in-depth networking inside and in between companies as well as company divisions.
A dedicated 5G campus network - a frequency range intended for the location-based use of the 5G standard - was licensed and put into operation at the Technology Center in Giebelstadt. Currently, intensive testing is carried out to fulfill the optimization potential of intralogistical solutions even further in the future. “We’re pursuing the strategy of already investing into tomorrow’s communications standard today and thus building the foundation for further digitalization,” says Notker Steigerwald, SVP, Head of Business Unit Logistics Solutions at SSI SCHAEFER.
The overall goal is an improved system control via machine-to-machine communication through which the propagated IoT (Internet of things) has now finally arrived in the logistics sector. Notker Steigerwald adds: “With the 5G technology, the impacts of the partly fault-prone and often overloaded current radio-based communication are also going to be a thing of the past.”
5G opens up diverse areas of application, for example, when mobile robots are able to carry out highly precise picking activities due to 5G technology and warehouse staff is supported by augmented reality applications.
“The ultimate goal of our 5G project in Giebelstadt is collecting valuable insights into highly automatic warehouses,” refers Notker Steigerwald among other things to the very satisfying results with automated guided vehicles (AGVs). “We will gradually integrate these into our new product generation and thus will take another big step into the direction of intelligent system control and in-depth networking inside and in between the company divisions and individual companies.”