Push-based communication streamlines many processes in EWM-controlled warehouses
ABAP Push Channels - what is it all about?
Interaction of APC and UI5
The communication of UI5 applications and the SAP system normally takes place from the direction of the UI5 application. If the application is opened or an interaction takes place, then communication with the SAP system can occur in response. In UI5 applications, this communication typically takes place via OData services. These services are stateless. This means that the communication channel is taken down again after the data has been exchanged. There is therefore no permanent connection between the user interface and the SAP system.
If the SAP system now has news for the users, it cannot recognize whether they are currently logged in at all. In the first step, a manual or automatic refresh can now be implemented. So again an action has to happen on the interface for communication to take place.
But how can we trigger communication from the SAP system? This is where the ABAP Push Channels come into play. These are based on a Web service that, unlike OData services, is not stateless but persists permanently. The SAP system therefore knows all connected end devices. If a change occurs in the SAP system that is of interest to the interfaces, a message can be sent via the APC. The advantages of this solution are obvious:
- Avoidance of unnecessary communication (relief of the network and all systems involved)
- Prompt notification of the users (virtually in real time)
- No interruption of the users in their work (by clicking on the refresh button or automatic refresh)
Use case from everyday warehouse life: APC in the material flow system
Use case: improved goods-to-man picking thanks to APC.
In the “goods-to-man” picking method, the WMS provides items in automated racking systems and transports them to the picking location via a conveyor system. The picker(s) remove(s) the items and the container(s) go(s) back to a storage location as an empty or a partially used container.
Optimization of goods-to-man picking can be achieved through the use of new technologies. The combination of SAP UI5 and ABAP Push Channel enables a scan-free and user-friendly picking process at the conveyor system. The users receive the required information automatically, in real time and clearly displayed in the user interface.
When a handling unit physically arrives on the conveyor at the workstation, a push notification can be sent to the picking application at the same time as the EWM update, since all the required information is already accessible at this point. As a result, users automatically receive the new work instruction on the screen without long delays and can start processing directly. As a result, performance is optimized because time-consuming and repetitive label scanning is no longer necessary.
In addition, the UI5 technology allows information to be displayed in a user-friendly manner. Due to the web-based display, important information can be highlighted in order to focus on the essentials. In contrast to classic screen applications, there are significantly fewer restrictions on the display. From optimized display to your own design, there are almost no limits to the graphic design of the screen interfaces.
We are here for you!
ABAP Push Channels can significantly improve communication in the warehouse and thus reduce many coordination efforts. It is therefore worthwhile to directly consider this possibility during application development in the UI5 environment. Have we piqued your interest? Just contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Senior Consultant SAP Logistics
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