AGVs helping NZ dairy company


Dematic says it has announced plans to upgrade New Zealand dairy company Fonterra’s warehouse automation at its Edendale factory by providing it with new Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs).

The intelligent automation company notes the AGVs are driverless fully automated forklifts with each having a load capacity of 3500 kgs and lift height of 4.0 m. The software controls and uploads data to the AGVs before they undertake their daily tasks.

It adds that the software improves useability and will allow Fonterra to better manage operations in its facility.

It says some of the ways it will achieve this will be through transporting and feeding pallets of raw materials into production subsystems as well as handling finished outbound pallets.

“Our AGV systems are tailor-designed to navigate any production and warehouse space with a laser-guidance system, using onboard hazard detection to avoid collisions,” Tony Raggio, General Manager of Sales, Mobile Automation at Dematic, says.

“This high-end navigation allows them to move around a facility optimally and safely,” he adds.

“Rotating laser scanners mounted on top of the AGVs measure angles and distances to reflectors mounted on the surrounding walls within the facility.

“The AGVs then calculate a position based on this information, together with speed and steer encoders to operate with a repeatable accuracy +5 mm.”

Dematic says Fonterra has been using AGVs since 2009 to save time and reduce the need for undertaking repetitive tasks.

It adds that the new AGVs will prevent bottlenecks and move products seamlessly throughout the facility.

It also notes the AGVs will manage three core activities at Fonterra’s Edendale factory: transfer and dispense replenished consumables; stack and de-stack empty and pre-filled product pallets; and stack and transfer finished goods to storage areas and conveyors prior to shipping.

For more information on Dematic, click here.



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