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Material Handling System Integrator Improves Distribution Center Sortation Using Rockwell Automation Integrated Architecture Production Control & Information System


eayCo Integrators Inc. enables distribution centers to divert packages with a 99.5 percent read accuracy rate while nearly doubling conveyor belt speed

MILWAUKEE,- Through implementation of advanced production control & information systems, Georgia-based SeayCo Integrators Inc. has successfully helped one of its major material handling customers achieve 99.5 percent read accuracy in its distribution centers.

Seayco, which designs technology and systems for successful sorting, tracking and loading of cartons, was asked by convenience store distributor McLane Company to implement a new control platform that would allow for real-time display of system status throughout the distribution center. To meet the needs of McLane Company, SeayCo opted to implement the Rockwell Automation Integrated Architecture, a multidisciplined control and information platform designed to service a broad range of applications.

“After considering all potential options, we concluded that the Rockwell Automation Integrated Architecture offered the speed, power and flexibility to meet our customer’s needs,” said Mike Nichols, director of controls engineering at SeayCo. “Specifically, the company’s Logix Control Platform offered the best combination of features for our customer.” The Logix Control Platform is the control system component of Integrated Architecture and includes Logix family controllers, CIP networks and View visualization technologies.

SeayCo installed the Logix Control Platform to track fast-moving cartons as they travel through the distribution center to trucks waiting at the loading dock doors. The performance of the platform made it an excellent choice for the application and the use of a common tag database throughout the system greatly reduces programming time during system implementation. Rockwell Automation support, interoperability with existing plant equipment, common software use throughout the system, and ease of use reduces operation and maintenance costs making it a solid, long-term investment for the user.

The high throughput of the ControlLogix programmable automation controller (PAC) enables SeayCo to meet the high-speed demands of its customers, helping ensure that packages can be more accurately diverted to the proper dock door without the need to recirculate, even at increased speeds.

SeayCo’s Integrated Architecture-based sortation solution boasts approximately 99.5 percent read accuracy and graphically displays real-time system status at terminals throughout the distribution center. Detailed reports provide warehouse management with information to operate successfully within the industry’s tight margins. McLane was so pleased with SeayCo’s solution, which will achieve full return on investment within one year of installation, that is has since hired the company to implement similar systems at six other locations.

“Implementing Integrated Architecture has allowed us to exceed the expectations of our key customer and has given us a means to operate more effectively in the material handling market,” added Nichols. “We couldn’t be more pleased with our decision.”


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