Opportunity Charging, a method of lift truck battery management, allows batteries to remain in place to enable charging whenever convenient. With Opportunity Charging, less time is wasted in the process of getting the battery to the charger, and more productive time is spent with the lift truck in use. The benefits of this battery charging option have led to the current “buzzworthy” status, but there are a few key considerations to keep in mind if you’re thinking of making a switch to Opportunity Charging:
Constant Charging Leads to Shorter Battery Life
Due to their in-machine, quick-charge design, Opportunity Charging batteries help prevent lift trucks, and their operators, from sitting idle. Constantly connecting them to a power source, however, takes a noticeable toll on the life of the battery. The consistent exposure to heat is wear and tear which any battery, even OC-designed, cannot withstand for a long period of time. When calculating the implementation cost of an Opportunity Charging system, it’s critical to factor in more frequent battery replacements.
Even OC Systems Aren’t Opportune All of the Time
The beauty of Opportunity Charging is in the flexibility it provides to forklift operators – they can charge during breaks of any kind, no matter the duration. However, even batteries in these systems must be brought to a full, 100% charge at least once a week to prevent damage – called the equalization charge. This overnight process differs from the typical Opportunity Charge, which achieves an 80% state-of-charge. Understanding where the equalization charge fits into your shift changes and overall operations is key in determining whether Opportunity Charging provides you the flexibility your process requires. For the most part, Opportunity Charging works best with a two-shift operation, where there is time allocated overnight for the equalization charge process.
Re-organizing Your Space
Because Opportunity Charging batteries aren’t designed for conventional chargers, specialized equipment must be purchased and installed to use in the Opportunity Charging process. Different configurations might call for alternative/increased space on your warehouse floor which enable forklifts to pull right up to charging stations. In addition to allocating more space, it’s key to rethink the make-up of your warehouse floor. Investing in faster, more opportune technology only makes sense if forklift operators have equally efficient charging locations. Rearranging your warehouse floor may be costly, time consuming, and, in some cases, impossible – so plan out your new space before investing in new equipment.
Opportunity Charging is a great battery charging method to keep your lift truck fleet moving, just be sure to consider battery replacement costs, equalization charge timing, and layout requirements. Not sure where to start, or have questions?
Reach out to our team to learn more about your Opportunity Charging equipment options.
Whether your system utilizes Opportunity Charging, Fast Charging or Conventional Charging, Sackett has the durable equipment – and solutions – for your method of battery charging.
Even before COVID, the farm-to-table movement was pushing demand for increased refrigerated warehousing. Now more than ever, the development of new, or expanded, cold storage warehousing is bringing significant technology and structure improvements to the forefront:
Architects are moving forward with taller, rather than wider, warehouse layouts. This shift in design brings greater refrigeration efficiency, and accommodates newer high-capacity freezer heights.
Product diversification demands are expanding the need for dedicated temporary storage areas with humidity flexibility – providing a broad range of storage options.
Logistically, micro-fulfillment centers are gaining popularity as same-day deliveries are now a standard expectation. For cold storage, this often means an investment in automated workforce technology.
Now with booming online grocery shopping, the need for efficient, state-of-the-art cold storage development is driving warehouse refrigeration technology and logistics optimization to new heights (and we’re not just talking about the ceilings).
Consumer expectations have forced retail and inventory-based businesses to rely heavily on automation to fill orders and explore different options for warehousing to match the market. The disruption demand, caused by the pandemic environment, has created incredible pressure for businesses across the board – impacting automation trends in logistics and real-estate demand in warehousing.
The Future of Logistics:
As the disruption to the economy became more and more severe in Q2, the emerging trends in logistics came to fruition in a real way. The most prominent? Automation and robotics within logistics at distribution centers and warehousing operations.
At the beginning of 2020, half of U.S. companies were open to investing in automation, with Logistics companies leading the pack at 55%.
In these next quarters of 2020, and beyond, Logistics will only continue to breakout as a leader in automation technology as they adapt to increased e-commerce orders, are forced into micro-fulfillment strategies to up speed and accuracy, and attempt to jump the hurdle of workforce challenges.
Though many aspects of life and business came to a standstill last quarter, warehouse real-estate did not. According to The Wall Street Journal, real-estate firm CBRE Inc. reported activity jumped 43% from April 15 to May 14, with overall activity sitting 2.8% higher than this time last year. Not only are leases being renewed, but new, larger spaces are being secured in an attempt to modernize distribution efforts – like grocery delivery and micro-fulfillment. Prologis Inc., another real-estate company, estimates high inventory levels and accelerated e-commerce growth could increase demand for U.S. warehouse space by over 400 million square feet over the next two to three years, as these factors typically require three times as much space as traditional distribution operations.
The pandemic environment has caused obvious disruptions, but continuing trends in logistics and warehousing are keeping industries moving forward with new technology, increasing efficiencies and additional space.
To celebrate the end of our fiscal year, Sackett hosted a social distancing team-building meeting and picnic. Our team shared success stories from the year and developed strategies to build upon that success.
As another reason to celebrate, we are proud to announce–the safety measures put in place to protect the Sackett team have resulted in zero positive cases of COVID-19.
The Sackett team recently celebrated the retirement of Gary Dyer, who worked as an engineer with Sackett Systems for 35 years designing and improving our transfer carts.
We rely on our people like Gary, who go the extra mile to ensure our success. The people at Sackett are what help us build trust and relationships with our clients, and deliver reliable solutions to their challenging problems. The entire team at Sackett Systems wishes Gary all the best in his retirement!
Improving the Sackett Systems Customer Experience In our continued efforts to improve the products and services we offer our customers, Sackett Systems is embarking on a project to develop Buyer Personas.
Buyer personas are semi-fictional representatives of an ideal customer, based in part on real data from our existing customers, as well as market research on our industry, including behavior patterns, motivations and goals. Understanding what inspires customers to choose our products and services is the key to building constructive buyer personas.
Buyer personas will help us to empathize with our customers, to better understand the information they are seeking and improve how we deliver the products, services and content they need to achieve their goals.
For more detailed information on Buyer Personas, visit the Buyer Persona Institute below by clicking on continue reading.