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Pipe processing firm implements automated storage

27 August 2018

Koenig Metall has integrated an automation and storage solution by Remmert to meet the increasing customer requirements, and boosting productivity by 40%.

The Remmert solution supports the production with a fully automated Remmert MIDI sheet metal store in combination with Remmert Laser FLEX 4.0. The loading and unloading of laser cutting systems works automatically, achieving space savings of more than 50%.

Koenig Metall offers a maximum of flexibility and productivity to meet constantly increasing market requirements. This inevitably includes transparent stock and fully automatic supply to the production facilities. Koenig Metall was unable to achieve these conditions to the required extent. It became a big challenge when a major customer closed its production from “one day to the next day” and planned to outsource its parts to Koenig Metall. 

“Our warehouse was about to burst,” reports Mario Eberle, CNC sheet metal technology production manager at Koenig Metall. “We stored on about 600 m² within the production area. Our total load capacity contains only 350 insufficient storage spaces in the existing sheet racks. The rest was stored where there was space on the floor.”

Despite the use of an ERP system, this situation repeatedly led to shortages. In addition, the supply of sheet metals for the processing machines became increasingly complex. Amongst others, reasons for this were that the material first had to be searched for, relocated, and last but not least transported manually by forklift. “This chaotic warehousing caused long response times,” recalls Mario Eberle remembers. “Furthermore, the frequent movements of the material often resulted in scratches, which, at the end of the day, led to board rejects.”

Material flow with intelligent automation

The Remmert solution favoured by Koenig Metall primarily includes the direct connection of the production facilities to the warehouse with a fully automated central supply system. The agreed goal was to provide material to the processing machines automatically and to move finished parts back from the machines into the Remmert MIDI sheet metal storage or to the next process step. The warehouse management of the raw materials and finished parts has also been improved in order to meet all customer requirements, such as batch tracking and documentation on a permanent basis.

Today, this is achieved by the Remmert system which supports these requirements regarding inventory control with the greatest transparency and traceability.

The heart of the Remmert automation solution is the MIDI sheet metal storage with a height of six metres, 595 storage spaces, and a maximum storage volume of 1,785 tons. Due to its compact design, the storage system offers high storage density and enabled Koenig Metall to reduce 300 m². Two of the machines connected to the system are in operation 24 hours a day. In order to make optimum use of their capacity, they are supplied with raw material from the storage in parallel via the Remmert automation Laser FLEX 4.0.

The Laser FLEX 4.0 is the fastest manufacturer-independent solution for fully automated loading and unloading of laser cutting systems and enables a material change in 60 seconds. 

The connection of the MIDI storage to the processing machines is managed by the warehouse management software (WMS) PRO WMS Enterprise by Remmert.