Contributed by Bob Giberson, Principal, PeakLogix
Last week, Chicago’s McCormick Place was buzzing with activity at ProMat 2019. An international event hosted by MHI every 2 years, ProMat touts itself as the industry event providing manufacturing and supply chain professionals with an opportunity to explore the latest innovations while building partnerships with their clients and vendors.
ProMat attendees go to the show every other spring to seek an answer to the common question: “How can manufacturing and supply chain professionals increase productivity while keeping their costs down?”
The answers lie in the halls of the show. The key to finding them, however, is knowing that a solution (or combination of solutions) must match the specific goals of each client – that there is no one out-of-the-box, singular solution that will be sufficient for every client.
A notable takeaway from this year’s ProMat was the domination of automation in the form of various equipment, including:
- Robots on autonomous vehicles
- Collaborative robots (cobots)
- Order selecting robots
- AGV’s with inserter/extractors for order picking
- Driverless forklifts, reach trucks, and turret trucks
- Light directed pick and put walls
- Augmented reality glasses for order picking and service
- Tote delivery systems
Old favorites were also present in the vast equipment offerings, namely pallet rack vendors, conveyor manufacturers, and shelving suppliers. In this year’s theme of automation, we were able to see many examples of how these traditional options can seamlessly integrate with an automated counterpart to drive rapid fulfillment and increased throughputs for our clients.
The benefits of attending ProMat are substantial. The show places an emphasis on featuring emerging technologies, and that was demonstrated through the novel forms of automation found all throughout McCormick Place.
At PeakLogix, we stay attuned to the latest trends and the smartest methods in material handling. Our team was able to see how emerging automation technologies work in real time as they were on display at ProMat. In turn, we’re already drawing insights in how we can help our partners work more productively on future projects.
MHI anticipated a massive turnout for 2019’s event, and upon witnessing people struggle to maneuver around the booths while packed in shoulder-to-shoulder, the turnout did not disappoint. Great attendance plus innovative displays made for a successful show.
Want to hear more about how the domination of automation we experienced at ProMat? Contact us to talk details and strategies.