Automated equipment generally used for picking of small sized, high-volume parts. (Most popular items)

Carousel, Horizontal

Carousels carry a number of storage baskets suspended at the top and bottom by a powered track system. Order picking takes place from the basket which is stopped at an operator station.  Carousels are limited in height to approximately 7 to 10 ft., although greater heights can be obtained by installing additional units on mezzanine levels.   Typical installations for carousel units have multiple carousels that support a single operator station, so that the operator does not have to wait on one machine to index the desired basket position. Can be manually or computer controlled with an integrated inventory control system.

Carousel, Vertical

Similar principal to Horizontal Carousel, but operates vertically with a gimbaled tray suspended between the traction chains.  A manufacturing unit consisting of two or more workstations or machines, with the material transport mechanisms and storage buffers that interconnect them.

Carrying Cost

The cost associated with having inventory on hand. It is primarily comprised of the costs associated with the inventory investment and storage; also called holding cost.


Describes a unit of measure and the way multiple physical units are packaged.  A case would typically be a sealed corrugated carton, in which a standardized quantity (greater than one) of a specific item is packed.

Chain Conveyor

A conveyor in which one or more chains act as the conveying element. British term: trolley conveyor.


Exterior covering of a structure

Cluster Picking

Product(s) picked to containers by an operator, for multiple orders during a single pass through the pick area. Typically used when the total cube of multiple orders can be manually transported.

Compliance Labels

Standardized label formats used by trading partners. Compliance labels are used as shipping labels, container/pallet labels, carton labels, or piece labels, and usually contain bar codes. Many bar-code labeling software products now have the more common compliance label standards set up as templates.

Computer Simulation

The creation of a mathematical model, representing the operation under study, for purposes of testing the implications of possible operating scenarios, without having to implement them.

Computer-Aided Design

The use of an interactive-terminal workstation, usually with graphics capability, to automate the design of products and projects. CAD includes functions such as drafting.

Consignment Inventory

Inventory that is in the possession of the customer, but is still owned by the supplier. Consignment inventory is used as a marketing tool to make it easier for a customer to stock a specific supplier’s inventory.

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