Tuesday 22 October 2013

Automated high-bay warehouse!

Siemens has constructed a high-bay warehouse using energy efficient drive technology and a powerful automation system for AUDI AG at its plant in Győr (H).

AUDI AG is one of the fastest growing car manufacturers in the world. The establishment of AUDI HUNGARIA MOTOR Kft. in Győr in 1993 was the starting signal for the construction of this state-of-the-art factory. Since then, the company has advanced to become one of the largest exporters in Hungary and one of the largest companies overall in terms of turnover. In 2012 Audi Hungaria produced a total of 1,648,030 engines and 38,541 cars.
The high-bay storage, which is installed in a 30 meter high warehouse and provides space for over 400 car bodies, is part of the new production line for the Audi A3 Sedan, Audi A3 Cabriolet, as well as the Audi TT Coupé and Roadster. Siemens developed and constructed the high-bay system, called the Central Body Buffer (ZKP), as a turnkey solution complete with the building itself. The project also comprises a fully automated conveyor system of about two kilometers in length that links the central body buffer with body shop, paint shop and assembly. This solution is tailored to the Audi production processes in Győr and helps the car manufacturer to optimize capacity at the individual production stations. The project was implemented by the Siemens Logistics Hub based in Vienna (A).

Siemens developed the controller of the storage and retrieval machines and the conveyor system for the body buffer on the basis of its Simatic S7 controllers. The bodies are conveyed by means of 350 Siemens electric motors together with frequency converters. The integrated drive system is equipped with energy-saving motors and is capable of recovering and storing kinetic energy. This means that it captures braking energy, stores it and makes it available to other drives. The result: fewer undesirable network perturbations and lower power consumption. In addition, Siemens has set up an RFID system that uniquely identifies each body stored in the body buffer and on its way through production.

The solution which they created is centrally located in the production at the Audi plant in Győr and acts as a hub between the individual production stations. By the time they reach the final assembly, all bodies have passed through the high-bay warehouse twice – once as unpainted and once as painted bodies. With the aid of the central body buffer, Audi can optimize its production, despite the wide variety of models and versions, by returning the bodies each time to the appropriate sequence for the individual stages of production. This sequencing of bodies results in greater flexibility and higher productivity at the Audi plant.

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