Case Study Karl Stolz

A system that is designed to provide flexibility and extensibility for 120,000 storage locations

Modular shelving

Scalable multi-level shuttle controlled by SAP

Scalable multi-level shuttle SSI Navette at Karl Storz: A future-proof investment

SSI SCHAEFER has designed and built a highly automated intralogistics solution for Karl Storz – deploying the pioneering and patented 3D-MATRIX Solution®. This offers exceptional flexibility and efficacy, and enables a warehouse design that is highly versatile: additional lifts, shuttles and other components can be easily retrofitted to scale up capacity and throughput. The storage area and picking stations are in completely separate parts of the building. SSI SCHAEFER had end-to-end responsibility for project planning. Material flows and process control were tested in advance by means of simulation.

This digital model enabled the solution design to be optimised and aligned with the volume of items to be handled. Based on these insights, SSI SCHAEFER installed racking served by SSI Navette shuttles. The configuration was based on the modular nature of the 3D-MATRIX Solution® – meaning new storage positions can be created as required, without disrupting ongoing operations.

The facility in Neuhausen handles more than 22,000 SKUs, ranging from small instruments for minimally invasive surgery, to mid-size items such as lights, to bulky equipment for operating theatres. Every day, 6,000 delivery note items are picked and compiled into some 450 customer consignments, in a total of around 700 packages. SSI SCHAEFER technology has allowed Karl Storz to significantly accelerate its processes, for example halving the time needed to fulfill large orders.

SSI Navette

At the heart of the 3D-MATRIX Solution® is SSI Navette, a dynamic storage and retrieval machine. Each SSI Navette shuttle operates in a single aisle, moving on its own dedicated rails at the bottom and top of the racking. An integrated lift serves four storage levels. Moreover, each system is equipped with two load-handling devices (LHDs) arranged at positions that correspond to the distance between two levels of racking. Each LHD can carry two containers. As a result, SSI Navette is able to move four containers to/from four storage positions across two storage levels in a single cycle.


While installing the racking, and the storage and retrieval equipment, SSI SCHAEFER also worked on the SAP ERP system at Karl Storz – extending it to include SAP EWM for warehouse management, and installing interfaces to the WAMAS® intralogistics software. WAMAS® controls and visualizes all material flows within the logistics centre.

Case Study Karl Storz GmbH & Co KG

SSI SCHAEFER has implemented a highly dynamic SSI Navette warehouse in accordance with the 3D-MATRIX Solution® for Karl Storz GmbH & Co KG as a general contractor. A system design with maximum flexibility and extensibility in mind, 120,000 bin storage locations and the use of 42 innovative SSI Navette shuttles have increased efficiency at Karl Storz by more than 20 percent compared to conventional system concepts.

Karl Storz gallery

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