What is ASRS? ASRS Means: Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems | Everything You Need to Know

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Understanding ASRS: Definition and Technology

ASRS systems are automated warehouse solutions and mechanisms that efficiently store and retrieve items within a confined space. There are diverse ASRS variants available, tailored to handle various inventory volumes, types, and speeds. Assessing your facility’s storage density needs and throughput goals is pivotal in exploring ASRS options.

Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (ASRS) play a vital role in enhancing efficiency and productivity within manufacturing and distribution facilities. These systems are designed to save space, improve safety, and increase operational output. This comprehensive guide offers insights into ASRS, including definitions, technology variations, benefits, applications, and indicators for implementing ASRS solutions.


Types of automated storage and retrieval systems include:

– Vertical Carousel Modules (VCMs)

– Horizontal Carousel Modules (HCMs)

– Vertical Lift Modules (VLMs)

– Crane-Based Mini Load AS/RS

– Vertical Buffer Modules (VBMs)

– Robotic Cube Storage

– Floor Robots (AGVs/AMRs)

Warehouse Integration: Key Indicators for ASRS Implementation 

  1. Overwhelmed Replenishment Processes

  2. Excessive Travel Time for Inventory Access

  3. Prolonged Search Time for Items

  4. Escalating Picking Errors

  5. Struggling Throughput and Fulfillment Times

  6. Increased Incidence of Damaged Inventory

  7. Frequent Misplacement of Inventory

  8. Unexplained Loss of Inventory

  9. Facility Operating at Maximum Capacity

  10. Heightened Risk of Worker Injury

Warehouse automation solutions offer numerous benefits:

  1. Space Efficiency: Save up to 85% of floor space.

  2. Reduced Labor Requirements: Cut labor needs by two-thirds.

  3. Enhanced Pick Accuracy: Achieve a 99.9% accuracy rate with pick-to-light technology.

  4. Improved Inventory Management: Maintain comprehensive control over inventory.

  5. Enhanced Safety and Ergonomics: Foster a safer and more ergonomic work environment.

Common Applications of ASRS Systems

ASRS systems find diverse applications in managing various inventories, such as small parts, sub-assembly, maintenance parts, and tools and dies. Typical applications include:

-Storage Retrieval

-Order picking


-Order consolidation



-Tools and dies storage,

-Maintenance parts storage

-Replenishment and returns

-Climate-controlled storage


Industries Benefitting from ASRS and Warehouse Automation

Several industries benefit from ASRS implementation including administration/services, automotive/transportation, chemicals, consumer goods, e-commerce/retail/wholesale, electronics, energy/mining, hospitals, mechanical engineering, pharmaceuticals, and public administration/government.


ASRS Costs and Return on Investment (ROI)

The cost of ASRS involves equipment, software, installation, and ongoing maintenance. ASRS typically yields ROI within 18 to 24 months due to labor and space efficiencies.


Why LD Systems for ASRS systems?

Customers choose LD systems because we agnostic to any brand. Instead, we base our solutions around what best serves our clients needs. When you buy from LD Systems, you’re getting more than an integrator – you’re getting a material handling partner.


Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (ASRS) Terms and definitions

Automated Storage and Retrieval Systems (ASRS):

ASRS refers to a computer-controlled system for automatic storage and retrieval of goods from predefined storage locations.


The technique of using automatic systems to manage processes and reduce human interaction.

Bins, Totes, Containers, Cartons, Case:

Storage vessels for goods, parts, or items.

Bulk Storage:

Storing materials and packages in larger quantities while keeping them in their original packaging.

Case Picking:

Filling orders with fully packaged cases for shipment, commonly stored in pallet locations.


The space occupied by an item in an automated storage and retrieval system, measured in cubic feet.


Establishing workspaces and conditions to reduce physical exertion for employees. ASRS delivers items at an ergonomic work height within the golden zone, reducing bending and reaching.

Fixed Aisle:

Storage & Retrieval Systems consisting of long, narrow aisles guided by a steel rack structure for automatic storage and retrieval.

Floor Robots:

ASRS solution using mobile robots to retrieve items from portable storage shelving to an operator access area. Ideal for slow to medium velocity inventory.

Goods to Person:

Delivering items directly to a person via ASRS, reducing walk and search time for the employee.

Horizontal Carousel Module (HCM):

ASRS system with highly dense storage bins mounted on a track that rotates horizontally for delivering slow to medium-moving products to an operator.


Material logistics, handling, and information management within manufacturing or distribution centers.

Inventory Management Software:

Application coordinating with ASRS to manage inventory, tracking storage location, quantity, part dimensions, etc.

Material Handling:

Movement, storage, control, and protection of materials throughout manufacturing, distribution, consumption, and disposal processes.

Mini Load Automated Storage and Retrieval System:

Automatic storage and retrieval system handling smaller loads contained in small containers or totes.

Mobile Shelving:

Shelving system on floor tracks for dense packing and easy access via automated control or manual hand crank.

Modular Drawer Cabinet:

Efficient storage for small or high-value parts/items, partitioned to optimize space for higher density.

Pick to Light:

Light-directed technology used to increase pick accuracy by reducing paper pick lists.


Another term for vertical carousel commonly found in Europe.

Robotic Cube Storage:

ASRS involving smart robots to shuffle, sort, and retrieve inventory stored in cube-like bins.

Robotic Shuttles:

Dynamic storage solution using independent shuttles for high-speed retrieval and delivery of stored items.

Split Case Order Picking:

Process of picking quantities less than a case for shipping or delivery.

Static Storage System:

Storage without mechanical movement, also known as a manual storage system.


Process of holding items in a specific location for picking, buffering, or shipment.

Storage Racks:

System for stacking individual items or pallet loads on single or multiple levels.

Vertical Carousel Module (VCM):

ASRS for delivering slow to medium-velocity items safely and quickly to an operator’s work counter.

Vertical Lift Module (VLM):

Enclosed dynamic storage solutions capable of adjusting to inventory changes and retrieving stored items at a waist-high pick window.

Vertical Buffer Module (VBM):

Enclosed shelving system designed for efficient picking and storage of totes with modular, scalable, and energy-efficient features.

Warehouse Management System (WMS):

Software optimizing warehouse operations from inventory acceptance to picking, packing, and shipping.