Home » Delivering customer value in material handling via technology and innovation
The widespread use of technology in consumer goods is beginning to change the expectations of the lift truck customer. Microprocessors and other enabling devices are advancing at speeds barely imaginable just 10 years ago. Tens of millions of lines of code now command hundreds of millions of instructions per second on processing devices developed for cars, computers and handheld devices. For warehouse managers striving to get the most from their fleets and operators, applications of this technology may be implemented to benefit their lift truck operations in numerous ways.
At Crown Equipment Corp., a global leader in material handling, multi-disciplinary project teams include personnel from engineering, design, manufacturing, sales and marketing to synergistically find innovative ways to apply technology to meet the dynamic and demanding needs of lift truck owners and operators.
Crown is maximizing the latest enabling technology, creatively employing and enhancing best practices from non-related industries and employing a systems approach to manufacturing lift trucks. That strategy helps companies manage their fleets with unprecedented customization. The result for the material handling industry is higher performance and productivity, improved safety, greater operator comfort, convenience and lowest total cost of ownership.
Crown project teams like to get out on the warehouse floor and observe how lift trucks are being used in the real world. Based on practical experience and observations, Crown project teams utilize innovative thinking to enhance operator performance. They see the body language and looks on the faces of lift truck operators after completing an eight or 10-hour shift. They see the job’s physical demands and how it may negatively affect productivity, safety and performance.
Applying the latest advances in sensing technology, automotive suspension design and dynamic simulation testing, Crown developed FlexRide Suspension. Now, shock and vibration that was absorbed by the operator is isolated. This unique design adjusts to the operator and reduces shock up to three times more than other stand-up trucks and allows operators to fine tune the ride to their preferences.
After gaining a thorough understanding of the characteristics of optimal comfort, the members of a project team developed advanced seating technology and suspension systems used in the luxury automotive industry. The enhancement of backrests, hip pads and adjustable armrests, along with innovative footrests, also contributes to overall operator comfort. The Crown project team gets even more enthusiastic about its work when a lift truck operator finishes a 10-hour shift by saying “that feels unbelievable.”
The July 2020 issue of Refrigerated & Frozen Foods magazine takes a mid-year snapshot of the cold chain in our annual State of the Industry Report, plus our 2020 Best New Retail Products Contest winners, women in cold chain logistics, the latest innovations in palletizers and refrigeration controls, plus much more—just click below to start reading.