The automotive industry supplier MAHLE uses a total of 4,500 Wanzl floor rollers at its sites across Europe. The MAHLE Behr thermal management plant in the Bavarian town of Neustadt is home to 1,500 of them. The plant, which has a manufacturing area of almost 10,000 m² and 19 production lines, produces car air conditioning systems for customers such as Audi, BMW, Land Rover, Porsche and Volvo. The floor rollers are used as transporters, order picking trolleys and mobile storage in three-shift operations around the clock. The functions they perform support the plant's internal "Logistics 2020" improvement project. The objective of "Logistics 2020" is to introduce the principles of lean production throughout the plant.
The "Logistics 2020" project is based on the four cornerstones of concepts for storage, containers, transport and standardised working methods. The WBR floor trolleys play an important role in this respect. When parts are delivered from suppliers, the robust floor rollers, which have a wire mesh base, are used for transporting and picking the parts and also function as a mobile storage facility in the truck loading area.
When the floor rollers reach the plant in Neustadt with their parts, which are stored in stacked plastic boxes, they become a mobile storage facility with a maximum height of 1.60 metres. There is space in the "station" for up to 500 floor rollers. The parts are delivered to the assembly lines on the basis of the pull principle. The air conditioning systems are then produced on a consumption-driven basis exactly when they are ordered by the customer. The Wanzl floor rollers travel through the production department in the form of a little train, depending on the order and the number of components to be installed. There are now no forklift trucks in use in the production department in Neustadt at all. "Floor rollers are a good example of the industrial intralogistics systems of the future and MAHLE Behr is our development partner in this area," says Wolfgang Laup, head of the Wanzl Logistics + Industry business unit. The floor rollers support the automotive industry supplier by providing value-added processes, a high level of standardisation and the shortest possible throughput times.
MAHLE has a local presence in all major world markets with a total of 75,000 employees at 170 production locations. As a leading global development partner for the automotive and engine industry, MAHLE offers unique systems competence in the areas of engine systems, filtration, electrics/mechatronics and thermal management.
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