Fonterra upgrades warehouse automation using AGVs

Friday, 20 May, 2022 | Supplied by: Dematic Pty Ltd

New Zealand dairy cooperative Fonterra is set to improve its warehouse efficiency through the use of automated guided vehicles (AGVs) from Dematic. The AGVs will transport and feed pallets of raw materials into production subsystems as well as handle finished outbound pallets.

The AGVs feature Dematic software that is designed to improve useability and will allow Fonterra to better manage operations throughout the facility.  They can help production flow smoothly by preventing bottlenecks without the need for manual handling.

They work as a driverless fully automated forklift — each with a load capacity of 3500 kg and a lift height of 4 m. The vehicles have data uploaded to them daily to define how they should work or which tasks need to be complete. They can also automatically return to charging plates when they’re not required to be working.

“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. This high-end navigation allows them to move around a facility optimally and safely,” said Tony Raggio, General Manager of Sales, Mobile Automation, Dematic.

“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 of ±5 mm.”

The AGVs will be operating out of Fonterra’s Edendale manufacturing facility and will manage a trio of activities: transferring and dispensing replenished consumables, stacking and de-stacking empty and pre-filled product pallets, and stacking and transferring finished goods to storage areas and conveyors prior to shipping.

Phone: 02 9486 5555
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