Material Handling Resources

Material Handling Industry of America is the largest U.S. material handling & logistics association representing the leading providers of material handling & logistics solutions.

Modern Material Handling magazine’s website.

Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association Trade association dedicated solely to improving the proficiency of the independent material handling equipment distributor.

NC State University’s material handling equipment taxonomy definitions.

Material Handling Glossary

Automatic Warehouse - A warehouse in which a substantial part of the receipt, storage and dispatch functions are performed without manual handling of the goods involved.

Belt Conveyor - consists of two or more pulleys, with a continuous loop of material - the conveyor belt - that rotates about them.

Belweigher - or belt weigher is a piece of industrial control equipment used to gauge the mass or flow rate of material traveling over a conveyor belt.

Control System - A hardware/software system that has as it's primary function the collection and analysis of feedback from a given set of functions for the purpose of controlling these functions. Control may be implemented by monitoring and/or systematically modifying parameters or policies used in those functions, or by preparing control reports that initiate useful action with respect to significant deviations and expectations.

Forklift Truck - is a powered industrial truck used to lift and transport materials (also called a lift truck, a high/Low, a forklift, a stacker-truck, or a sideloader).

Loading Dock - is an architectural fixture where trucks may be loaded and unloaded. They are commonly found on commercial and industrial buildings.

Logistics - The science of planning and carrying out the movement and maintenance of operations. Deals with the design and development, acquisition, storage, movement, distribution, maintenance and disposition of material.

Pallet - A horizontal platform device used as a base for assembling, storing, and handling materials and/or products in a unit load. Usually made of wood, this platform supports the load when it is picked up by a forklift or pallet jack (also referred to as pallet racking).

Receiving - The function of accepting, recording, and reporting material into a facility.

System Configuration - An iterative design process consisting of the evaluation of the factors affecting products and production tasks, selection of a design concept based on these factors, and evaluation of the performance of the selected concept. Following the results of the evaluation, a system can be refined and reevaluated, or discarded.

Warehouse - A commercial building for storage of goods.

Warehouse Management System - or a WMS, is a key part of the supply chain and primarily aims to control the movement and storage of materials within a warehouse and process the associated transactions, including shipping, receiving, putaway and picking. The systems also direct and optimize stock putaway based on real-time information about the status of bin utilization.

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