DHL Supply Chain recently deployed its first smart warehouse in Asia Pacific that uses the digital twin technology. Digital twin is an important concept in industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) that involves the use of digital models to better understand and manage physical assets
The third-party logistics (3PL) provider has implemented the integrated supply chain solution at Tetra Pak’s warehouse in Singapore.
Combining IoT and data analytics
"Innovation has always been at the heart of what we do at Tetra Pak,” said Devraj Kumar, director of integrated logistics for South Asia, East Asia & Oceania at Tetra Pak. “To keep the cogs of our operations turning seamlessly, it is vital that we have complementary warehousing and supply chain solutions that can meet the high demands of our customers.”
Combining the Internet of Things (IoT) technology with data analytics, DHL Supply Chain created a smart warehouse solution for Tetra Pak by bridging its physical warehouse with a unique virtual representation that monitors and simulates both the physical state and behaviour of the warehouse assets in real time.
With this digital twin solution, Tetra Pak can maintain 24/7 coordination of its operations to resolve issues as they occur, particularly those that involve safety and productivity.
What’s more, warehouse supervisors can use real-time operational data to make informed decisions to reduce congestion, improve resource planning and allocate workload. Using IoT and proximity sensors on Materials Handling Equipment (MHE), spatial awareness is enhanced, thus reducing potential collision risks. Controlled areas with restricted access are also monitored with management alerts.
A comprehensive solution
The smart warehouse includes a DHL control tower that monitors the flow of inbound and outbound goods to maintain time efficiency. It ensures goods are correctly shelved within 30 minutes of receipt, and delivery-bound goods are ready for shipment within 95 minutes.
Furthermore, DHL Supply Chain implemented a container storage management solution that minimizes the need for employees to handle heavy containers. All employees are also trained to work within newly introduced safety measures. This reduces operational risks and improve safety.
“We are pleased with the successful implementation of this smart warehouse, and we look forward to partnering DHL Supply Chain to further enhance our productivity and maintain our high safety standards in our supply chain operations," Kumar said.
Meanwhile, Jerome Gillet, CEO of DHL Supply Chain Singapore, Malaysia and the Philippines, said that its latest collaboration with Tetra Pak is a “great example for smart warehouses of the future to deliver agile, cost effective and scalable supply chain operations”.
"Tetra Pak is the world's leading food processing and packaging solutions company serving the needs of hundreds of millions of people in more than 160 countries, and we are proud to play a part in their vision to make food safe and available everywhere," said Gillet.
As a 3PL provider, DHL Supply Chain enables customers to fully outsource their logistics management and operations. Its solution offerings include warehouse management, domestic transportation, service parts logistics, packaging design and recycling, all delivered through state-of-the-art IT solutions and project management techniques.