These are systems meant for receiving orders for materials from anywhere in operations collecting the materials from locations within a warehouse, and delivering the materials to work stations in operations.
ASRS has three major elements:
Computer and communication system
These systems are used for placing orders for materials, locating the materials in storage, giving commands for delivery of the materials to locations in operations and adjusting inventory records showing the amount and location of materials.
Automated materials handling and delivery systems
These systems are automatically loaded with containers of materials from operations and delivered to the warehouse .Similarly; they are automatically loaded with orders of materials at the warehouse and deliver orders to work stations in operations.
Storage and retrieval system in warehouse
Warehouse store materials in standard size containers that contain fixed amount of each material .For example, a container of a particular type of plastic molding would always contain 100 parts. These containers are arranged according to a location address scheme that allows the location of each material to be precisely determined by a computer .A storage and retrieval (S/R) machine receives commands from a computer ,gets containers of materials from a pick-up point in the warehouse ,delivers materials to their assigned location in the warehouse and places them in their locations Similarly, S/R, machines locate containers of materials in storage ,remove containers from storage and deliver containers to a deposit point in the warehouse.
The benefits of ASRS are increased storage capacity, reduced labor cost and improved product quality.