Improved order picking concept
16 Sep 2019
With the Linde N20, Linde Material Handling is optimizing its unique order picking concept
Greater safety and higher pick rates thanks to a superior view during order picking: The unique vehicle architecture of the N20 low-level order picker from Linde Material Handling enables highly ergonomic, flexible, safe and thus extremely productive – and fast – picking in the load capacity range from 1.6 to 2.5 tons. With many new features and the highest variety of configurations the successful concept is brought to the next level.
Driving up to the shelf, getting off the truck, retrieving products from the shelf, loading them onto the goods carrier, getting back onto the truck – and off to the next picking position: Manual picking is one of the most labor-intensive, piecemeal tasks in goods handling. Linde Material Handling’s latest N20 low-lift order picker generation improves all these work steps in one go. “The vehicle optimally supports the employee in all subtasks,” says Linde Material Handling Product Manager Eloïse Lévêque.
This is made possible through a unique vehicle layout which has proven itself over two decades: With the Linde N20, the operator stands in front of the battery which gives him a couple of advantages compared to the conventional version where the operator stands behind it. For example, it gives the driver a more immediate and therefore better visibility ahead, and better safety.
This design principle is also advantageous when it comes to maneuverability: The service space in front makes it easier to maneuver the unit through narrow aisles and past obstacles. “This increases safety and at the same time enables the ability to work faster and achieve higher pick rates,” says expert Lévêque. The driver himself is protected by a massive cast steel front bumper.
A unique feature of the new Linde N20 is the fully suspended operator compartment which reduces the physical strain on the operator. Advanced damping technology absorbs vibrations and shocks that would otherwise have a negative impact on the performance and health of employees. “We have been able to reduce the driver’s exposure to human vibration transmitted via the steering wheel and operator platform by around 30 percent,” says Product Manager Eloïse Lévêque.
In addition, there are numerous other new ergonomic features, including a rounded backrest, cushioned knee protection and a height-adjustable steering wheel. The drive switches can be operated from both sides using thumbs and forefingers and the functions of “raising” and “lowering” via a switch above the backrest. “In this way, the operator is automatically looking in the direction of the fork arms when activating the main lift, which is a crucial factor for safety,” says Product Manager Lévêque, adding that the Linde Curve Control for automatic adjustment of cornering speed has been fitted as standard and the Linde BlueSpot can optionally be integrated in the chassis front.
Custom-fit range of models
As picking applications can differ fundamentally, Linde offers a wide range of variants for its new series. A total of ten versions are available, all of them featuring an initial lift function. The Linde N20 B, N20 and N25 or N20/N25 HP models are designed for transporting goods at ground level. With the Linde N16 Li, the operator can lift the load to heights of up to 790 mm.
If two different customer orders are to be picked directly one after the other, the double stacker variants Linde N20 D and N20 D HP are recommended – both can lift loads of up to 1200 kilograms to a height of around two meters. Picking two jobs is even more efficient using the N20 LoL model variant, which is equipped with extended load arms. In addition, Linde Material Handling customers benefit from a wide range of options with regard to drive technology – proven lead-acid or modern lithium-ion batteries – and in terms of fleet management integration using the “Linde connect” system.
Together with the new Linde N20 C order pickers which were launched only a few months ago and where the operator compartment is located behind the battery Linde Material Handling is the only manufacturer offering two different vehicle concepts to serve the most diverse customer needs.