In this paper, an approximation method is discussed for the analysis of pick-to-belt orderpicking systems. The aim of the approximation method is to provide an instrument for obtaining rapid insight in the performance of designs of pick-to-belt orderpicking systems. It can be used to evaluate the effects of changing the layout of the system, the number of picking stations, the number of pickers, the conveyor speed, the number of bins to be processed per day, the number of orderlines per bin, etc. Especially in the design phase, modeling and analysis speed is more important than accuracy. The method presented in this paper is based on Jackson network modeling and analysis. The method is fast and sufficiently accurate. The method is used by Ingenieursbureau Groenewout B.V., for early-stage evaluation of design alternatives of pick-to-belt orderpicking systems and general transportation systems.

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de Koster, R. (1994). Performance approximation of pick-to-belt orderpicking systems. European Journal of Operational Research, 558–573. doi:10.1016/0377-2217(94)90423-5