Automated storage systems with ‘arctic’ temperatures are getting more and more common in drug warehousing and distribution. Logistics 4.0 in practice.

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Automated storage systems with ‘arctic’ temperatures are getting more and more common in drug warehousing and distribution. Logistics 4.0 in practice.

Warehouses in the pharmaceutical industry must meet very strict requirements for the storage, picking and distribution of pharmaceutical products. The requirements of pharmaceutical warehouses are related not only to the obligation to maintain proper temperature and humidity of the air in the place of storage but also to the need to store individual groups of substances in separate zones (controlled substances, e.g. psychotropic, flammable, out-of-date drugs, etc.). Automated storage systems with extractors and carousels are the way to safely store pharmaceutical products.

Automated storage systems are equipped with a temperature and humidity control system and access control to stored products. They protect pharmaceuticals from harmful effects of external factors, damage or unauthorised access.

Automated high bay racks allow for storing drugs at temperatures up to minus 80 degrees Celsius.

Medicare is one of the founders and members of the Organisation of Polish Pharmaceutical Distributors, a representative of the pharmaceutical warehousing market in Poland. It was in Medicare that a decision was made to implement two automated Lean-Lift racks with extractor, each 5.5 m high. Access points are located in the upper part of the system so that they can be operated directly from the mezzanine floor next to it.

The use of automated high bay racks with digital picking display practically eliminated errors in picking speeded up the picking process and increased the capacity of the distribution warehouse.

Currently, on 20 sq m of warehouse space, there is as much as 300 sq m of storage space. Each Lean-Lift rack is equipped with 56 trays (3260 x 825 mm each) with a load capacity of 180 kg. The total load capacity is 20 t.

One of the international pharmaceutical corporations also opted for an automated solution, installing 5 automated storage systems in its distribution centre: 3 Lean-Lift systems and 2 Multi-Space systems.

The factory of this corporation produces over 80 million pharmaceutical packages annually. The main problem so far has been the picking of orders due to their size and diversity. Thanks to automation, the storage area was also reduced to just a few square metres.

Automated storage systems are also suitable for pharmaceutical warehouses, individual and network pharmacies and online pharmacies, as well as when it is necessary to ensure controlled storage conditions for medicines, such as low temperatures and certain humidity levels.

In one of such facilities, together with three racks with extractor, a carousel system has recently been used. In total, they can accommodate 44,000 products.

The access control system protects substances against uncontrolled picking. All operations are recorded and can be tracked by selected employees. Specific categories of medicines can be assigned to specific individuals and only made available to them.


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