The present invention relates to a device and a corresponding method for the visual technical support of manual picking operations in a warehouse by a device with a mobile unit with an opto-electronic detection device, an optical output, a data processing and a transmitting and receiving unit and an interface through which required information about a current picking task to the mobile unit to be transmitted.
From the prior art is through the EP 2 161 219 B1
a generic device and a corresponding method known. By the DE 10 2012 100 354 A1
has been described from the perspective of a reduction of energy consumption, especially in the field of mobile unit to the effect that no permanent data connection and no relatively accurate location of an order picker in the warehouse longer required. A respective target point of a current picking task in the warehouse associated with paths that are shown a gradient field comparable to corresponding arrows in the streets or traffic routes within the camp. Information corresponding to these paths leading to a current picking task is displayed to the order picker via the mobile unit. In this sense, a route guidance without knowledge of a position of the picker is proposed.
Furthermore, from the DE 10 2010 041 548 B4
a method in the form of a device as a system for finding and positioning of objects based on an active transponder network within a detection area in which users are moved with mobile readers.
The object of the present invention is now to develop further potentials for energy saving in order to increase the active life of a mobile unit without having to increase its weight as a permanent load and load of a picker by additional energy storage.
This object is achieved in that distributed over the warehouse arranged markers are used, which are distinguishable from each other or one-unique, the markers by the data processing of the mobile unit each with characters, preferably arrows, according to a current order picking task and in Dependence of a respective location of the mark occupied in the warehouse and visually displayed in the mobile unit. It is thus based on the idea of forming a gradient field corresponding to a respective target point according to the teaching of DE 10 2012 100 354 A1
constructed, now recognized markers based on their unique identifier by the image processing in the mobile unit, occupied with corresponding values and displayed by the optical output in the field of view of the order picker. Thus, only a very small area of a field of view is analyzed, processed for optical output and modified by known imaging techniques. These limitations of analysis and editing result in significant energy savings by dramatically reducing the computational overhead of the mobile unit in both image analysis and image processing, as well as in optical output.
In addition, an analysis and processing of direction information and markers according to the invention is limited to the field of view of the order picker by processed and occupied by the data processing of the mobile unit according to a current order picking task only in a current field of view of the picker and recognized markers and brought to the visual display become. Thus, e.g. Marked, processed or provided with values for markers within its current field of view or within visible fields, and used by known imaging methods to display signs for pointing the mobile unit out at corresponding locations within the field of view. According to an exemplary embodiment which will be described in detail below, a relevant character is superimposed into a current viewing area of the picker by the mobile unit or projected into a pair of glasses. For other forms of markers, the procedure is analogous. As a result of this additional, significant reduction in the computational outlay within the mobile unit, stored electrical energy is largely saved in comparison to known systems, in particular in mobile data processing or computing units.
Advantageous developments are the subject of the dependent claims. Accordingly, in one embodiment of the invention, so-called optical markers or "augmented reality" or AR markers are used as markers. These AR markers are distinguished by the fact that they can form a neutral surface by themselves, in which direction information is visibly displayed only for the order picker via the optical output unit. In principle, various shapes, colors, sizes and / or objects can be used by the image processing in the mobile unit as AR markers. There are also Other technical forms of markers can be used, such as RFID tags, which are preferably addressed via comparatively energy-efficient means so-called near field communication or angefunkt, and then back with a single-unique identifier. Due to the limited range of an undirected or unidirectional emitted by the mobile unit electro-magnetic request signal out answer only in a near field RFID tags. This transmission is repeated at intervals of time. Direction and distance information can be added via runtime differences. Other forms of markers, such as so-called. Barcodes, and possible combinations thereof is in full content to the disclosure of DE 10 2012 100 354 A1
In the forms of markers mentioned above by way of example, the optical output in the mobile unit allows corresponding direction information to be visible only to the picker in his spectacles as part of the mobile unit, e.g. be displayed by a fading in reflection. As with AR markers, other types of markers make it possible in principle to make inserts in a constant size or to scale the symbols to size. By such scaling, e.g. a distance or distance to the respective marker are indicated.
In a significant development of the invention, the markers lying in a respective field of view are selected or selected by the data processing of the mobile unit with regard to their necessity for optical representation of a path. This development of the present invention is based on the finding that a path through a warehouse can be represented as a continuous sequence of straight line pieces. These straight sections run through support points, which are formed by markers. Due to the training relatively long and i.d.R. straight-lined lanes and passages within warehouses, it happens that along a respective lane or a passage as part of a path to a place of a picking task regularly more than one marker is located in a current window. However, a current viewing window is to be recorded by an optoelectronic detection device of the mobile unit and evaluated by the data processing with knowledge of the gradient field and the directional values of the markers recognizable in the current viewing window and displayed accordingly in the optical output. When approaching a respective nearest marker this is always larger and / or stronger, with more distant markers are visible at the same time. In this case, it makes sense technically to no longer assign this arrow, or any other corresponding optical direction information, to these immediately adjacent markers, but to provide only the marker that is currently next to the mark with an active display. This next-after marker is e.g. in the case of an AR marker due to the greater distance smaller, so that even in the current viewing window to be hidden direction information is smaller. Nevertheless, this information is obvious to the picker as Wegweisbar, but also leaves more room for other visible environmental information, since a current field of view is changed and limited to a lesser extent. Analog can be moved with other forms of markers.
According to a further preferred embodiment of the present invention, only one next-to-next marker lying in a current viewing window is occupied with optical direction information. A nearest marker is thus saved as a comparatively larger display, which in addition to an energy saving in the display and an attention of the order picker is increased to another path and a clarity of the current field of view.
Particularly preferably, the direction information of all markers located in a respective current viewing window is compared with the goal that only deviating direction information is displayed or additionally displayed. Of course, the locations of such deviating direction information are then located at a certain spatial distance from a respective nearest or the next marker with an optical direction information to be displayed in each case. Such deviating direction information is preferably displayed visually emphasized, in particular by enlargement and / or by a different color or even a flashing display etc. highlighted. As a result, an order picker equipped with a device according to the invention can be informed at an early stage about a change of direction or an approaching achievement of the goal, in order, for example, Accelerate accordingly on further distance or already decelerate when approaching. In any case, it will increase the attention of the order picker. In an alternative embodiment of the invention, additional information is additionally displayed at the same time, as well as a warning message being displayed next to a path change. These may be general disturbances in the trail, such as Constrictions, thresholds or other third-party work that could pose an accident risk. Also, branches can be visually "locked" to prevent detours and deviations from a path determined to be optimal.
In a significant development of the present invention, a plan of the warehouse is kept in the mobile unit, in which the positions of all markers with their respective identifier or other distinguishing features are noted. With the transmission of the position of a new picking task, the respective values or optical direction information of all markers are transmitted to the mobile unit, wherein their respective assignment to the positions within the warehouse is preferably not transmitted due to the unambiguous identification of the AR markers , This requires a very small amount of data to transfer a new picking task. In addition, a reduction in energy consumption is achieved, since only at the beginning of the processing job data must be transferred to the mobile unit, wherein subsequently an initialization takes place within the mobile unit. In the simplest case, only one interface is needed on a mobile unit, through which the required information about the order is transmitted to the mobile unit.
Preferably, a current position of the picker is roughly determined in the mobile unit based on a detected marker. The markers can now also serve to locate and not only indicate the direction, but define the point of view. Using known technical methods for distance determination and calculation of a current viewing angle, this position determination within the mobile unit can be carried out even more accurately and, if necessary, can be transmitted as feedback to a superordinate monitoring system for order processing. Thus, e.g. estimating a possible time span for performing a current picking task based on a rough knowledge of a position of the respective order picker and the position of a current picking task. Upon receipt of the data of the current picking task at the order picker, the mobile unit sends e.g. as a type of acknowledgment of receipt and / or order acceptance this indication of the coarse position within the warehouse, without the need for known elaborate methods for determining the position would have to be taken.
On the basis of the knowledge of the currently visible markers, achievement of a specific target approach can also be securely monitored so that rough tracking can be switched on after a pure route guidance and, as the approach to a destination of a current picking task progresses, finally based on computation and energy-intensive fine-tracking known method can be forwarded to the exact localization of a currently determined storage location. In this case, additional information about the current picking task at a specific compartment can also be displayed in this last phase by the optical output of the mobile unit, such as e.g. an exact identifier of a particular subject or a number of items, and further information known to those skilled in the art for the further treatment of this picking order, in particular an intermediate and / or outer packaging in sachets, transport boxes or a label etc.
Further features and advantages of embodiments according to the invention will be explained in more detail below with reference to exemplary embodiments with reference to the drawing. Therein show in a schematic representation:
1 FIG. 5 is a plan view of a prior art warehousing provided with distributed markers having an indication of directional signs on a picking target according to an embodiment; FIG.
2 : A block diagram of a mobile unit as a portable equipment of a picker and
3 a representation of another embodiment according to 1 in which a strong reduction of path hints to be displayed is achieved by a particular selection of AR markers.
Throughout the various illustrations, the same reference numerals are always used for the same elements. Without limiting the invention, only one insert for picking in a parts warehouse using storage containers or KLT is shown and described below. However, it is obvious to a person skilled in the art that an adaptation of the method described below to a high-bay warehouse using corresponding lifting devices is possible in the same way. Also, a reduction is possible to an application for flexible assembly of modular small series on a manual workstation with affiliated special bearings, as it is known from the production of small electric motors for special applications. Here, further instructions for assembly can be given below, after a specific part has been removed from a warehouse. This would also make a production online monitored and logged. But also for future control systems within, for example, supermarkets, this method is adaptable, especially since it can also access evaluation and display means, in the form of smartphones, tablets or data glasses u.ä. already be carried individually by potential customers. Depending on the location, such as advertising content and indications of special offers are given.
The picture of 1 Fig. 12 is a plan view of a prior art warehouse 1 in the warehouse 1 are shelf storage bins 2 in rows 3 arranged and through alleys 4 between the rows 3 reachable. The streets 4 are frontally through passages 5 connected, forming the internal network of traffic routes. columns 6 make up together with the rows 3 a type of two-dimensional coordinate system, which can be extended by the specification of a floor in a shelf storage as a third dimension. This is in the top view of 1 but not representable.
1 represents an initial situation in which a picker K from any current location in the warehouse 1 to process a picking task A in question. The picker K contributes to this equipment with a mobile unit D, via which the picking task A with a route guidance to coordinates R (A) and also eg transmitted with respect to a respective number of pieces and displayed to the order picker K and / or announced. In 1 For example, this mobile unit D is indicated as a type of cap with data glasses as an optical output, on which a detection unit or camera is also provided.
the warehouse 1 has an electronic stock management B, in which information on the stored quantities of a particular commodity and also the coordinates R of the respective goods within the warehouse 1 are contained in a central database DB. Correspondingly, coordinates of a commissioned target goods or commissioning task A are also known, namely according to the storage location X by lane, column, floor, KLT container, etc. A respective quantity of an article complements the picking task A.
In the in 1 illustrated initial situation, a current position of the order picker K does not have to be known, in particular one for the generation and monitoring of picking tasks A parent system not. In the context of the route guidance described below to the location of a current picking task A, a picker K is guided with a minimized demand for electrical energy to a vicinity N of a storage location X of the current picking task A. From any location within the warehouse 1 the order picker K is guided along a path to the storage location X. The approximation is made by a comparison of the lying in a field of view of the order taker K clearly distinguishable markers 7 monitored with the destination coordinates R (A). By reaching the defined by a certain distance Nahbereichs N is switched to a progressively refined route guidance, so a fine tracking.
In the streets 4 and hallways 5 in this embodiment are optical markers in the form of AR markers 7 arranged in such a way that in the corridors 5 every branch to an alley 4 here with an optical guidepost 8th characterized by the mobile unit D in a respective field of view of a picker K in place of the AR marker 7 is displayed in order to lead to a current picking target X of the current picking task A. Furthermore, in the hallways 5 in the manner indicated several markers 7 provided a sufficiently narrow grid in the form of columns 6 to be able to depict.
With a current picking task A, the mobile unit D also has unique values for all AR markers 7 transmitted. Because the AR markers 7 uniquely identified and thus distinguishable from each other, this data transmission to the mobile unit D can take place in the form of a simple table in which only the respective values for the optical signposts 8th are included. Thus, in the mobile unit D, irrespective of a respective position of the order picker K, a type of gradient field according to the sketch of FIG 1 being represented. Within this gradient field, a picker K always reaches an area very close to the picking target X at the coordinates R (A), regardless of a starting position. It is therefore no longer necessary that the order picker K or his mobile unit D must be provided with information at intervals. Under the specification of the mobile unit D, the order-picker K acts independently on the basis of data which has been sent to the mobile unit D once until the vicinity N of a storage location X of the current picking task A has been reached and rough tracking is switched on.
2 shows as a block diagram equipment D a picker K, which he carries with him, so as a mobile unit D. Here, the mobile unit D includes the functional modules of a mobile transmitting and receiving unit in the form of a WLAN unit 9 with a coupled data processing or mobile computing unit 10 , an optical output unit 11 formed in this example as a so-called. Head Mounted display and a local input / output unit designed here as a microphone and headphones for communication with the order picker K 12 extended, and finally a detection unit 13 in the form of a camera for data acquisition. This optical data acquisition can for a not further shown higher-level target-guidance system and subsequently used tracking systems. The design and number of output units 11 , Input units 12 as well as registration units 13 may vary per application in each case.
In addition, the mobile unit D comprises a database in which a plan WP of the warehouse 1 is stored. This plan WP includes everyone in the warehouse 1 provided markers 7 with their respective identifier and fixed position within the warehouse 1 , so that when assigning a respective order picking A in addition to the actual pick order to build the gradient field described above for a secure route guidance only the values 8th the marker 7 eg in the form of a table, and only once. These values 8th are then prepared and displayed as optical signposts. For this transmission of a comparatively small amount of data of the values 8th all markers 7 In the simplest case assumed here, only one interface of a central order-issuing unit (not shown) is required, which transmits or makes available the required information about the current order A to a respective mobile unit D of one of several order-pickers K.
The markers 7 are determined by the mobile unit D using the map WP all markers 7 in the warehouse 1 now also to the rough location of the picker K within the warehouse 1 used. With one of the AR markers 7 out of certain approximate position R ~ (K) of the order picker K a position message S [R ~ (K)] is sent in this embodiment as a kind of positive acknowledgment on the complete receipt of the new order picking task K '. For this purpose, the above-mentioned interface can also be used, if now in the opposite direction. It is the picker K so not only displayed the direction of the storage location X in the sense of a route guidance, but it is also easily possible, if necessary, by recognizable at a current position marker 7 at least estimate a current location. On this basis can be several at the same time in a warehouse 1 working pickers K i for the process to be extended as follows: transmit via a centrally induced electromagnetic broadcast all mobile units D i their current approximate position R (K i) together with a status message with respect to the execution of a respective Kommissionierungsaufgabe A i . Correspondingly, a specific order picker K can now be selected centrally in order to issue a new order picking task A 'which, if necessary, can be done directly following a current picking task A while minimizing a route etc. But there may also be several order pickers K to a predetermined location within the warehouse 1 be sent, for example, to complete a more complex or heavy picking task A together. It is in the case of a use of multiple order pickers K i still essential that each of these multiple order pickers K i is equipped with its own mobile unit D i and is usually charged with different or different picking task A i , so that this several order pickers K i also on the same marker 7 They can each look their own picking tasks A i according to different symbols or values and optical signposts 8th in the square of the same marker 7 can be displayed. This assignment takes place only in the respective own mobile unit D i for the relevant picking task A i . Thus, a presented system and method is freely adaptable and expandable.
Not least can be easily determined on the basis of such a coarse location if necessary, whether a picker K moves, or is stopped due to a possible problem. In this way, a relevant order picker K can be addressed in a targeted manner in order to send help or otherwise remedy the situation, so that a current picking order A can be processed as quickly as possible.
3 shows a representation of another embodiment according to 1 , In this embodiment, a large reduction of path hints to be displayed or optical signposts 8th through a special selection of AR markers 7 reached. For this purpose, in principle only the optical markers lying in a respective field of view of the order picker K become 7 through the data processing 10 the mobile unit D evaluated. All by the order picker K in the current position invisible optical markers 7 * are not activated. Accordingly, those become those markers 7 * pertinent information also not processed. This should be indicated by the dashed lines.
Furthermore, these become only visible markers 7 selected in a further step in terms of a need for optical representation of a path. As a consequence, only the in 3 solid line optical path notices 8th in markers 7 processed and displayed by the optical output. In addition, only one in a current window is the next after marker 7 ' with an optical direction information 8th occupied, as can be seen from the current position of the order picker K.
Finally, the direction information 8th all markers in each current window 7 compared with the goal that only deviating directional information 8 ' be presented in addition, which is in a certain spatial distance to each current next marker 7 or after markers 7` with an optical direction information to be displayed 8th are located.
In addition, detours and / or wrong paths are indicated by a corresponding marking by a self-explanatory symbolic marking 8th" quasi optically "locked".
The order picker K obtains the shortest route to the intended storage location X by his mobile unit D, with internal knowledge of his rough position R ~ (K), by looking at selected markers 7 displayed. As shown in the picture of 3 becomes a second next marker 7 ' with an optical guidepost 8th in the form of a straight-pointing arrow, while in an also lying in the field of view 4 a marker 7 with a prohibition sign 8th' is used to block a path starting here right at the beginning. In the course of the course 5 is a distant marker 7 with an optical guidepost 8th" occupied, which indicates by flashing a turn arrow, a significant change in course even from a greater distance. On the way along the corridor 5 will always be the next but one marker 7 ' activated as a function of a position of the order picker K by the mobile unit D, at the same time turning into aisles 4 through the active insertion of prohibition characters 8th' is prevented. Thus, the order picker K reaches over only seven markers 7 already a position at which the mobile unit D detects an entry into a near area N and a switch to a rough tracking until reaching a position P at a shelf storage or a specific column 6 line 3 a shelf storage causes. Here, in the area of the dotted line drawn at a certain further target approach to a computing and thus energy intensive fine tracking FT with exact information and / or extended route guidance is changed so that the relevant position X is reached exactly in the rack warehouse. In this case, additional information from the current picking task A is then also provided for the relevant pick. This may, for example, range from a predetermined number of items from a confirmation of inventory to a particular type of intermediate packaging for a pending shipment. Here are extensions and modifications to a particular application in the discretion of the skilled person, with an optical output via the mobile unit D is preferred for display.
However, according to the above-described method, it is also possible to prepare a new path in the mobile unit D in the event that the order picker K has embarked on a partial path which is locked to himself, for example by turning into an alley 4 into it. One possible reason for this is that an obstacle blocks the prescribed path. From the new position, the mobile unit D determines a new path and hides corresponding symbols 8th then re-evaluated visible markers 7 one.
Due to an existing in the mobile unit D at least rough knowledge of a respective current position of the order picker K, it is always possible in a method described above to report this internal knowledge to a higher-level monitoring system at least at intervals. This can be used for each of the order pickers K i tracking in the sense of tracking. As a result, in addition to high efficiency and good planning in a picking process, measures of occupational safety for each of the pickers K i can be separated and individually monitored, such as maximum permissible physical load through measured distances and the observance of rest periods in predetermined areas of the warehouse 1 and active working hours.
Thus, various implementable approaches have been described above, by the coupling of a method according to the invention with several known methods, a significant increase in efficiency in the management and organization of picking tasks while reducing the need for electrical energy can be achieved. In order for an active life of a mobile unit D is increased without having to increase their weight as a permanent load and load of a picker K by additional energy storage or batteries at the same time.
LIST OF REFERENCE NUMBERS
- Shelf bins
- AR marker
- 7 *
- by the order picker K currently not visible optical marker
- 7 '
- in a respective current window lying next-to-second marker
- Value of the AR marker 7 / optical signpost
- flashing optical guide as a warning, course change or display of a curve or turn
- Prohibition sign, optically blocked way
- mobile transceiver / WLAN unit
- mobile computing unit / data processing
- Output unit / Head Mounted Display
- Local input / output unit / microphone and headphones
- Registration unit / camera
- A '
- new picking task
- inventory management
- mobile unit 9 . 10 . 11 . 12 and 13
- central database of the warehouse 1
- Fine tracking for exact route guidance to storage location X
- Order picker / K i multiple or i order picker
- Close range with easy tracking
- Position at the shelf warehouse
- R ~ (K)
- from the AR markers 7 out determine approximate position of the order picker K
- Feedback signal as positive acknowledgment and confirmation of a picking task A
- Plan of the warehouse 1 with all positions of markers 7 with their respective identifiers for unambiguous assignment
- Storage location for the picking task A