Modula: the 4.0 product in a smart 4.0 factory

At a time when the computerisation of businesses and the human-data interchange is more and more important, the solution is an automated factory and the Modula VLM represents a solid response to the 4.0 approach.

Modula is a VLM based on the idea of taking back floor space and converting it into vertical space. To give you a concrete example, an 840 m2 warehouse becomes just 14 m2 of floor space and a vertical distribution of 16 metres in height, giving you a compact and lean factory which has its workers in mind.

So, the principle behind these VLMs is goods-to-man and not man-to-goods, avoiding long journeys on foot for operators, human error, incomplete picking lists and physical effort. Picking is actually automated, so operators avoid having to perform unnecessary moves to reach the products. Access to Modula VLMs is completely computerised via a graphic touch screen user interface with colour display and intuitive icons that simplify the learning process for operators.


The uses for a Modula VLM are wide and varied. For example, they can be used as automatic dispensers that provide assembly areas with the materials needed on the production line. Or they can be set up as a store, or used as a buffer for the production line or as a spare parts warehouse.  Whatever the operator’s “role”, they no longer have to inspect shelving to find the materials they are looking for: it’s the system itself that finds the materials, records stock levels and issues repeat orders whenever necessary. Here’s another feature: the vertical shelving is modular and potentially infinitely expandable. The savings a business can make by adopting an intra-logistics system like this are huge and there are various VLM models with different specifications.

We start with the minimal footprint of the Modula Slim which has a depth of less than 1.6 metres, and we go up to the Modula OneTon with a tray and bay width of 4100 mm and a payload per tray of 990 kg!


Storage solutions also include an internal bay that constitutes the ideal solution for companies needing to minimise their use of floor space, whilst the external bay offers an excellent ergonomic workspace for operators having to pick heavy products.

VLMs can then be connected to anthropomorphous robots, lifting equipment, zero-weight cranes and other automation systems to create a lean, compact factory able to communicate with other systems and automated devices.

VLMs transform the whole process: in the past, operators had to use a ladder to reach a component, hold on tight at a height of 3 metres, keep track of the event with picking slips and then record it all afterwards. A simple operation like this would require 4 people, while today you need only half that number.


VLMs could be equipped with a Modula Cloud device that means you can receive incoming warning signals when any faults in the machine are detected, keeping the customer informed in real time and providing adequate support for preventive maintenance activities. This exchange of information will be essential in the factory of the future. This is an added value that makes it possible to collect and monitor, in the Cloud, all data associated with the VLMs in order to keep track of their operation at all times and provide a service whose goal is to consolidate the relationship between company and customer, resulting in benefits both for the Modula production process and also for the customer.

The result is that the Modula system processes a large amount of data that can then be transmitted to help people use the systems, or intervene in real time in the event of improper use, or provide information well in advance of the next maintenance task.





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Automation Update