The GoPal® solution
- Company: Kärcher
- Country: Romania
- Employees: +400 (Romania) and +13.000 (globally)
- Industry: Cleaning technology
- Website: www.kaercher.com
- Automatic pallet transportation from injection molding machine to the materials warehouse and from the assembly lines automatic wrapping machines to the finish goods warehouse.
- GoPal E24W AMRs
- Pallet Stations, Conveyor Pallet Stations and Elevation Pallet Stations
- Conveyor Pallet Stations integrated with existing wrapping machines
- Conveyor stations with automatic conveyor extensions in the materials and finished goods warehouses
- Auxiliary Boxes for automatic door opening
- Quick deployment of the GoPal solution - with no changes to existing infrastructure and no downtime
- Easy scalability of the GoPal solution
- Transporting more than 800 pallets per day
- Safe, reliable, and efficient pallet transport 24/7/365
- Mitigating labor shortages
Kärcher is a German global leader within cleaning products for both professional and home use. The company recently expanded its production capacity in Europe with the construction of a second factory in Romania.
With two large factories in operation and a looming labor shortage, Kärcher began looking for a way to automate their internal pallet transport.
With two large factories in operation in Romania, difficulties in acquiring warehouse staff, and with a keen interest in innovative technology, Kärcher decided to issue a tender for having their internal pallet transport automated.
The tender attracted bids from many manufacturers, which Kärcher carefully reviewed and tested. In the end, however, Kärcher was extremely impressed with the capabilities, possibilities and benefits of the GoPal solution.
Kärcher selected the GoPal solution not only because of its inherent safety and flexibility, but also because the GoPal solution provides a huge advantage: a complete CE-approved and fully integrated solution for transporting pallets, which can be deployed in just a few days, with no changes to existing infrastructure, no production downtime and without involving any third parties.
Kärcher decided to deploy the following GoPal solution:
• Five GoPal E24W AMRs (subsequently scaled to currently eight robots)
• Pallet Stations with Call Buttons and Pallet Sensors
• Conveyor Pallet Stations integrated with wrapping machines and injection molding machines as well as Conveyor Pallet Stations with extensions acting as a pallet buffer in the warehouse
Auxiliary Boxes to enable the robots to automatically open doors
• Auxiliary Boxes to enable the robots to automatically open doors when required
• Elevation Pallet Stations
The eight E24W robots perform the following tasks:
• From wrapping machines (one per assembly line) to warehouse: once the pallet is full and wrapped, the operator pushes the Call Button. A robot arrives, picks up to the pallet and transports it to the warehouse – without any human intervention at all.
• From injection molding to warehouse: once the pallet is full, the operator pushes the Call Button. A robot arrives, picks up the pallet and transports it to the warehouse.
On their way to the warehouse, the robots have to pass through multiple doors. The Auxiliary Boxes in the GoPal solution enable the robots to automatically open these doors when required.
Arriving at the warehouse, the robots deliver the pallets to a conveyor pallet station with several extensions, which then act as a buffer - in case the forklift driver is unavailable to pick up the pallet at that time.
• Rather than taking months to install, the GoPal solution was installed and commissioned within a couple weeks - with no changes to existing infrastructure and no impact on daily operations
• Initially, five robots were deployed to move up to 800 pallets/day. Subsequently, three more robots were deployed to quickly scale the GoPal solution to significantly increase the number of pallets moved per day
Kärcher is a German family-owned company that operates worldwide and is known for its high-pressure cleaners, floor care equipment, parts cleaning systems, wash water treatment, military decontamination equipment and window vacuum cleaners. Kärcher is the world market leader in cleaning technology and employs more than 13.000 people worldwide across 120 subsidiaries in 70 countries.