"PRESS RELEASE TGW installs Automated Storage with Electro Static"
PRESS RELEASE TGW installs Automated Storage with Electro Static Discharge Protection for Hella Hella, the leading specialist in automotive lighting & electronics, has recently centralised the entire logistics operations at one of its production sites. Electro Static Discharge or ESD protection, accurate production supply and low noise levels were the important considerations for the new logistics centre situated in Recklinghausen, Germany planned by Miebach Consulting, implemented by TGW and is now operated by Lila Logistik. Virtually every single car uses lighting technology and electronic components and systems developed and manufactured by Hella. With a turnover of 3.7 billion euros the group ranks among the Top 50 automotive suppliers worldwide and employs over 25,000 people in 70 manufacturing plants, production subsidiaries and joint ventures in 18 countries. At its Recklinghausen site, Hella manufactures lighting and electronic components, sensors, actuators, ‘x-by-wire’ systems as well as optical and acoustic signal systems in two production areas. Historically these two areas have been supplied with production components in a decentralised manner and this has been mirrored in the distribution activity, which involved several decentralised locations. Operations have now been centralised in a new logistics centre, which became operational in October 2007, and now accommodates both the production and distribution operations Hella also appointed Lila Logistik to operate the facility. Lila Logistik’s operational team are tasked with delivering high service levels to complete material requests throughout the facility within a maximum window of just one hour. The logistics centre planned by Miebach Consulting and implemented by TGW comprises several different storage areas. The materials and items that 2008_06_TGW_ESDP_Hella.doc Page 1 / 5 PRESS RELEASE populate these storage areas are classified by their usage or velocity as either A,B or C items - with ‘A’ being the fast moving items. All ‘A’ items are stored in a traditional pallet warehouse served by forklift trucks. These items are delivered and stored on pallets and on request are transported to the different production areas via an in-floor conveyor system. Automated Warehouse ‘B’ and ‘C’ items are stored in an automated small-parts warehouse. Four storage aisles each 45 m long and 9 m high are equipped with TGW’s Mustang high-performance automated storage and retrieval machines. The four aisles accommodate 27,000 trays, which act as storage shelves for the stock items that are received either in cartons or tote bins of various sizes, shapes and weights. The tray provides a common load “’footprint’ and characteristics for the materials handling equipment to reduce the risk and cost associated with handling a large variety of items with variable characteristics. The TGW Mustang storage and retrieval machines retrieve up to 600 trays per hour from the warehouse to supply the items and material to the production workstations and distribution operations. The automated warehouse is located to one side of the logistics centre and is connected to the workstation positions via an automated conveyor system provided by TGW. The pre-storage area and conveyor network are installed on a raised platform, which frees up valuable ground floor space and maximises the use of the available headroom. Two TGW continuous elevator or vertical conveyors, each delivering up to 800 trays per hour, connect this conveyor level with the working areas on the ground floor. Multifunctional work places provide flexibility At the heart of the logistics centre are 13 ergonomically designed multifunctional workstations. Each workstation is identical in its design but can be used for different functions, which are defined and allocated in the material flow control system. These functions can be changed at any time providing 2008_06_TGW_ESDP_Hella.doc Page 2 / 5 PRESS RELEASE maximum flexibility to the operation. Currently five workstations are used as picking stations for production supply, six are available for goods issue, one workplace is reserved for returns and one as a clearing station. The items picked for production are delivered to the production areas on trolleys and transported via the in-floor conveyor to the required location within the facility. A TGW conveyor loop links these 13 workplaces together and connects them to the automated small-parts warehouse. This loop approach is an important design feature as it allows the trays containing the items to be sequenced to the workstations. The loop un-couples the TGW automated storage and retrieval machine activity from the sequencing operation, which allows the machines to operate in the most efficient way. The multi purpose loop is also used to deliver stacks of empty trays too and from the automated warehouse and the operation. All requirements satisfied by an electromechanical solution The entire material handling system has been provided by TGW without any pneumatic elements. All accumulation, transfer and lifting requirements are met using an electro-mechanical solution, which as well as making the installation of a pneumatic system redundant, reduces maintenance costs and reduces ambient noise levels. The material flow control of the storage and conveyor system has a direct interface to a SAP-WM module and manages all material movement and flow of goods throughout the logistics centre. It directs the activity of the tray conveyor system and the in-floor conveyor system as well as controlling and managing the storage location management within the automated small-parts. ESD Protection In All Areas Electro Static Discharge (ESD) can cause serious damage to electronic equipment. ESD protection is therefore a major priority for Hella and plays an important role in the design, specification and operation of the Recklinghausen 2008_06_TGW_ESDP_Hella.doc Page 3 / 5 PRESS RELEASE facility. A strictly maintained allowable charge range has to be accommodated throughout the material handling system. The storage and transport trays used throughout the operation are constructed from conductive graphite and have to be transported on conductive materials at all times. TGW were able to deploy the appropriate technologies and materials to meet the site’s ESD requirement. Belt conveyors, for example, were provided with conveyor belts made of conductive material and steel slide plates were provided. The TGW load handling devices on the TGW Mustang machines were fitted with electro-conductive conveyor belts. Additional carbon brushes on the conveyor transfer devices provide earthing when the trays are transported over plastic belts and grounding bars ensure a stable charge range along the entire conveyor system. Short Implementation Time These special requirements combined with a tight timeline for the installation posed a challenge. However, in less than five months TGW and its partners turned an empty hall into a fully operative, highly automated logistics centre. This was thanks to the close cooperation between all participants from the TGW implementation team, Hella’s project and operational teams, the planner Miebach Consulting, the operator Lila Logistik and all the sub-system suppliers and partners. This integrated ‘teamwork’ approach ensured that the solution was delivered and handed over to the Lila Logistik operational team on time. Ends 2008_06_TGW_ESDP_Hella.doc Page 4 / 5 PRESS RELEASE Pictures: Source: TGW Mechanics GmbH Printing free of charge is permitted quoting the source and in connection with a press report principally covering TGW Mechanics GmbH affairs. Publication for advertising purposes is not free of charge. Hella_050414bA_hq.jpg: TGW Mustangs rushing at high speed through 45 m long and 9 m high storage aisles. Hella_050453-2_hq.jpg: 4 Mustang stacker cranes by TGW serve 27,000 tray locations in Hella's logistics centre in Recklinghausen, Germany. Hella_050224b_hq.jpg: A conveyor loop connects 13 workplaces, providing for the right distribution of the goods. Hella_050333-2_hq.jpg: The workplaces at Hella stand out for their ergonomic and multifunctional design. Hella_050344b_hq.jpg: 2 permanently operated vertical conveyors by TGW transport up to 800 trays per hour from the storage level to the workplaces and back. Contact: Press contact: Philip Steeds Ross Matthews TGW Limited Arkill Matthews Ltd 31 The Point, Market Harborough, T: +44 (0)1923 770 455 Leicestershire, LE16 7QU M: +44 (0)7711 347 701 T: +44 (0)1858 468 855 email@example.com F: +44 (0)1858 419 613 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org 2008_06_TGW_ESDP_Hella.doc Page 5 / 5