Pre-assembled cable guides for continuous use in storage and retrieval units

Ready-to-connect energy chain systems prove themselves in logistics solutions from SSI Schaefer.

In tropical conditions or even in deep freezers – a high availability of the storage and retrieval units is indispensable with a throughput of up to 30 double cycles per hour. As the world's leading solution provider of modular warehousing and logistics systems, SSI Schäfer has been relying on pre-assembled energy chain systems from igus for the vertical movements of its storage and retrieval units for many years. These are precisely tailored to the respective application and highly reliable. Together with connectors from Harting, they ensure permanent availability in SSI Schäfer systems.


  • What was needed: E2/000 series energy chain, chainflex cables, ready-to-connect harnessed readycable with HARTING industrial connectors
  • Requirements: Standardised components with the aim of sourcing subsystems from a single source wherever possible; use even at up to -30 °C in deep-freeze storage, throughput of up to 30 double cycles per hour, high availability
  • Industry: Warehouse logistics, fresh food area, deep-freeze sector
  • Success for the customer: The ready-to-connect systems from igus optimise the procurement process, streamline internal logistics and reduce assembly times; special connectors enable easy handling and reliably ensure power and signal transmission even at high sub-zero temperatures
Storage and retrieval unit The storage and retrieval unit Exyz is the ideal solution for fully automatic storage of pallets. For years, the company has relied on energy chain systems from igus for the moving energy supply systems.


As a globally active general contractor, SSI Schäfer implements complex logistics systems, starting with system planning and consulting up to turnkey systems and customised service and maintenance packages. Software solutions for warehousing up to material flow management round off the service portfolio. In order to work as flexibly and efficiently as possible, SSI Schäfer relies largely on standardised assemblies with the aim of obtaining subsystems from a single source wherever possible.
A prime example of such a turnkey system is the "Exyz" storage and retrieval unit, which ensures fully automatic storage of pallets. The name is self-explanatory. The 'E' stands for efficiency, energy consumption and performance, and on all three axes X, Y and Z on which the SRU operates: longitudinal travel, lifting as well as storage and retrieval movements.  Exyz convinces with its maximum flexibility: the storage and retrieval unit can be used as a single-master or two-master unit with one or two load suspension devices for single, double or multiple depth storage and retrieval including SSI Orbiter LHD.
The configuration of the unit is based on the modular principle. The machine components are manufactured in batches, pre-assembled in the factory, tested and shipped, and then put into operation worldwide within a very short time.
In addition to the high performance, the area of application of such stacker cranes also places the highest demands on all individual components as well as the energy supply system. In this way,
storage and retrieval units must operate reliably in the deep freeze at temperatures down to -30 °C. Not only the energy supply system itself, but also the individual plug-in connectors must reliably ensure power and signal transmission even at these sub-zero temperatures.


Since the introduction of the "Exyz" in 2012, SSI Schäfer has relied on pre-assembled energy chain systems for the up and down movements.  Specifically, the system solution consists of an energy chain of the E2/000 series, fail-safe chainflex control and data cables as well as bus and motor cables.
The cables were supplied as a ready-to-connect readycable system, which optimises the procurement process, reduces internal logistics costs and assembly times.  The term "readycable" refers to ready-harnessed cables that are already equipped with the necessary plug-in connectors.
To ensure a high availability of the system components and to keep maintenance and repair costs to a minimum, igus pays particular attention to the plug-in connectors in particular. If the SRU is used in the deep-freeze area at down to -30 °C or in the refrigerated area at down to +5 °C, the system is equipped with Harting plug-in connectors, which not only enable easy handling, but also reliably ensure power and signal transmission even at sub-zero temperatures.
SSI Schäfer has been relying on igus energy supply systems for many years. Before the introduction of Exyz, the company did the harnessing themselves. Since 2012, we have for economic reasons been using only pre-assembled systems, which only have to be installed at the construction site. Today, a pre-tested system is simply packed in a carrier and delivered to the respective construction site. There, the system only needs to be connected on site.  "And this works perfectly due to the standardisation," confirms Sebastian Leimeister, Team Leader Storage Machine Hardware at SSI Schäfer.

"We only work with suppliers who, on the one hand, take the system concept into account and, on the other hand, anticipate technical requirements in order to provide the appropriate solutions and further developments. The system partnership has proven itself right from the start. "
Markus Sellen, Product Manager Storage Technology at SSI Schäfer
Plug-in connectors The plug-in connectors from Harting in combination with pre-assembled energy chain systems from igus ensure permanent availability.
chainflex cables in energy chain Various fail-safe chainflex cables in use in an igus energy chain.