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Essemtec will receive the worldwide distribution rights for the Tower, an SMD component-storage system, in 2010.

A robotic arm, which is located inside the tower, grips the containers, reads its barcode and stores it automatically, or rolls it out if required.

A Tower stores up to 546 reels, is 2.2m high with a footprint of 1m2.

It does not need to reserve storage space for a specific component and stores wherever it finds a free slot.

The storage software can control multiple towers like one, enabling a modular expansion of the storage capacity.

When using multiple towers, same components can be stored redundantly.

The database knows the exact location of every reel or tray and its rest amount as all reels are identified with a barcode.

The Tower can automatically prepare all components of a setup list and restore them when they return from the pick-and-place machine.

The amount of components on each reel is corrected based on the consumption data delivered by the pick-and-place machine.

For storing sensitive components, a drying unit can be integrated that reduces the relative humidity inside the tower to below five per cent.

Temperature and humidity are measured and documented, and components with expiration dates are monitored.

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