Automated materials handling solutions specialist TGW Logistics has completed a major two-year warehousing project for Würth Elektronik eiSos, one of Europe's largest manufacturers of electronic and electromechanical components.
The TGW project forms part of a multi million Euro investment by Würth, which has added market-leading automation and 5,000 square metres of additional warehousing space plus a number of new offices and 800 square metres of extra laboratory space to its facilities in Waldenburg, Germany.
The warehouse development doubles the company's existing storage capacity, ensures it can provide 14,000 different products ex-stock to its global market and is scalable, to accommodate future business growth.
The centrepiece of the new logistics centre is an automatic mini-load warehouse comprising six aisles, 38 levels and 140,000 shelf spaces, utilising TGW Stingray Shuttle equipment, goods-to-person order picking and a pick-and-pack order processing solution.
Goods arriving at the logistics centre are loaded onto the conveyor system in cartons or totes, labelled with a unique barcode and measured automatically to determine the optimum storage pattern in the shuttle warehouse, based on the real load dimensions.
A central high-performance loop located between the shuttle inbound area and the workstations distributes the packages to the order picking area, packing area and the warehouse at a rate of 2,700 loads per hour.
"All in all, we installed more than two kilometres of conveyor equipment to handle the goods safely and quickly within the entire logistics centre", says TGW Project Manager Sebastian Hutterer.
Virtually the entire project was implemented using TGW's own product range: from racking steelwork and platforms, KingDrive® conveyor equipment and Commander® controls to the Warehouse Control System for the shuttle warehouse.
"Particular attention needs to be paid to the significant proportion of small orders in our business, which - combined with our huge worldwide distribution and sales representation networks - does not make the whole logistics process any easier," explains Thorsten Rollbühler who is responsible for Würth Elektronik's supply chain.
"TGW was the only provider who understood from the start what was special about our material handling operations. Implementing a scalable system, which we can quickly adapt to, was an important aspect for us. The shuttle lifts at the end of each aisle allow us to use eleven shuttles on all levels, meaning we can currently store or retrieve 300 totes or cartons per aisle per hour. If we need more performance one day, we will simply have to add more shuttles. In case our business model or our product range changes, or the order volumes grow, we will be able to respond quickly to meet those new requirements."
“Customer service is the very core of our brand, and is the foundation on which our reputation in the electronics sector is based. Thanks to the expansion of our logistics facility, our ability to deliver our products immediately from our stocks will remain secure even as we continue to grow,” says Oliver Konz, CEO of Würth Elektronik eiSos.