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500% pick rate rise – DM codes explained

Article by Michael Trimmer

To understand how Wise Robotics Robotics makes a 500% rise in pick rates genuinely possible, you need to understand the technology involved. That is why we are here to answer the important question – what is a DM code? Is it the same thing as a QR code? A barcode but square?

What do DM and QR stand for?

DM and QR refer to Data Matrix and Quick Response, respectively. This is where we begin to see the separation between the two, and why the latter is much less often used in industry language than the former. DM is much more literal and direct, while QR is much more descriptive and advertising-oriented. Additionally, the phrase “DM” already has popular meaning elsewhere. It is social media shorthand for ‘direct messages’.

DM codes are the term for the entire category of digital communication that QR codes are a form of. Although they are often seen as a square-shaped pattern of white and black smaller squares, they can also be seen as rectangular patterns on purchase orders and shipping documentation. As an upgrade in information density from a simple barcode, they are a very valuable and efficient means of getting data from one place to another in a physical fashion.

How do DM codes make flexible robotics possible?

DM codes are a critical feature of modern flexible robotics and industry 4.0. They are what replaces the bulky and intrusive infrastructure of old, and replaces it with something much more sophisticated and far more space-saving.

Back in the days of industry 3.0 and fixed robotic automation, robots needed strict guidelines to keep them on track when navigating around a warehouse. In many cases, this quite literally meant tracks. Rails. Gantries. Conveyor belts. Robots had to be tightly confined to particular paths since they lacked the intelligence and self-awareness to navigate a warehouse space effectively.

The infrastructure that made this navigation possible was expensive, both in terms of direct costs and lost operational abilities. Not only is building a vast array of rails, gantries, and conveyors expensive, the space such infrastructure consumes is then unavailable for the actual purpose of a warehouse. Storing products.

DM codes offer a much more streamlined solution. Onboard every robot is a suite of sophisticated computer systems and a set of scanners. On the floor of the warehouse, DM code panels are positioned strategically at specific points. When read by the robot’s scanner, each panel provides exact positioning information. The robot can then know exactly where it is, and use that information to calculate its course relative both to all the other robots, obstacles in the warehouse itself, and the products it needs to get from point a-to-b, or from storage to the picking stations.

DM codes provide a streamlined workaround to the problem of controlling infrastructure for robotic navigation. Now that the robots can understand points of reference, rather than simply moving backwards and forwards along a rail, the space needed for navigation support shrinks from metres of metal to millimetres of matrices. Without all that bulky infrastructure in place, much more space can be redirected to SKU storage. Combined with the removal of staff walkways, your warehouse could see 30% improvements in overall storage density.

Discover the efficiencies of DM for yourself

To find out more about the robotic revolution that DM codes are a major part of, and how they could bring 500% pick rate rises to your warehouse, come and see what Wise Robotics has to offer in person.

As the proud owners and operators of Europe’s first flexible robotics demonstration centre, we understand just how to explore and explain the benefits of industry 4.0, and why your business needs to be taking the lead in this field sooner rather than later.

Contact us now to organise a visit or a consultation call, so that you can discover the robotic revolution isn’t just coming soon. It’s already here.

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