Flipkart is India’s leading eCommerce marketplace with over 80 million products across 80+ categories.
They have all across India reach with millions of products being delivered every day.
One of Flipkart’s biggest challenge is to manage the massive wave of incoming parcels and make sure that there is absolutely no chance of an occurrence of a bottle neck. The top layer continuously drops parcels though the chute to the bottom layer into the bags. It becomes a critical task to maintain the workflow and keep track of each and every bag.
The project was to be designed from scratch and had to be up and running in the time span of six months.
As per the initial requirement, NIDO made the existing 196 chutes ‘smart’ by adding sensors and programmable logic controllers at the drop locations. At the end of chutes, were bags for the parcels to be collected in. Photoelectric sensors were installed to make sure smooth flow of parcels and that there is no blockage/overflow, indirectly avoiding any chances of bottle necking.
When the bag is full, further addition of the parcel is avoided until the operator empties it.
In an area larger than 10,000 sq. ft., NIDO successfully automated parcel handling system in less than 3 months. The productivity rose so sharply and yet there was potential for even better efficiency, that the whole process was expanded, and number of chutes went up to 518. There exists a continuous 24×7 communication between the WMS, PLCs and the 518 Chute locations.
The operator has control over his station via a push button. If the bag gets full, the operator need not wait for a chute to be blocked for the WMS to be notified of the status, s/he can directly push the button, thereby saving time. A common button is installed for a simple communication between PLC and WMS, i.e to stop adding parcels on a full chute, or resume adding parcels on an emptied chute.
4 Different indicating lights are provided for the operator to know what information from PLC is passing from WMS. Red for Blocked Chute ; Green for Unblocked Chute ; Blue for Timeout ; Yellow for the sensors when a block condition is sensed
A Human-Machine Interface display was also installed at the main control panel for the operator to monitor the status of the chutes and take supervisory actions, if needed. This status can be checked remotely and extremely conveniently in a warehouse that expands over 10,000 sq. ft.
To execute a project on such a massive scale, NIDO made a custom PLC network in which the 518 chute locations were allocated to 37 different nodes, each communicating with 14 chute locations. All the 37 nodes, in a hybrid topological network, were connected to the server via an Ethernet module using CC link IE field network module. The data integration was done via ethernet protocols.
The Productivity was increased from 18000 PPH to 48000 PPH
Minimized human related errors and accidents
NIDO Salient Features
• Customized Solution
• Fully capable of integrating with existing automated systems
• Always expandable
• Years of expertise
• Pan India Service Support
• Within 24 hours service support
AGV and drop locations
Chutes and bags of parcel