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“The use of a driverless transport system is a major step forward for Coroplast,” says Serkan Cira, DTS Project Leader. “We intend to largely automate the materials handling system in our master roll warehouse in Wuppertal. The aim is to optimally utilise our production capacities and at the same time relieve our staff of non-value-adding activities.”
Previously, employees had to leave their workplace at the large coating machine in order to transport the master rolls they had produced. They also had to use a pallet truck to position new, empty racks in order to wind the next master roll. The racks were, in turn, brought over by their colleagues from the transport logistics department, but with our DTS, these manual processes have become a thing of the past. The robot now performs these tasks automatically, taking away finished rolls and bringing new empty racks for the next master roll. Serkan Cira is visibly happy about that: “The successful use of the DTS means less tape production downtime, which frees up additional capacity. My colleagues can now concentrate on performing tasks that cannot be done without human resources.”
Automation and digitization are closely related. In industry, you can’t have the one thing without the other.
“The use of this technology definitely places us among the pioneers in our sector,” says Thomas Zakrzowski, Production Manager Technical Adhesive Tapes. “This high-end product, which was originally developed for Airbus, is otherwise only used in state-of-the-art production facilities at Audi or Porsche.”
And if you watch the system at work you can’t help but be impressed, as the DTS, made by robotics specialist KUKA, moves fully autonomously and with almost uncanny sureness through its working area. The sophisticated drive technology enables it to move in any direction and ensures that the robot navigates to the required position, even in the tightest of spaces. Its laser sensor technology enables the DTS to function well, even in a dynamically changing working environment. The system can detect other vehicles or persons, reliably avoid obstacles and stop within a split second. It can also lift weights of up to 1,500 kg and even has the ability to learn because it is fitted with a navigation system that includes AI-supported mapping technology.
A co-worker that is so able and reliable soon becomes a highly appreciated member of the team as well – even though it’s “only” a robot. That’s why people soon had the idea to replace the impersonal abbreviation “DTS” with a friendly-sounding name. So we started an in-house naming competition, which led to plenty of creative, amusing ideas. The names included ANNA, the name of company founder Fritz Müller’s wife, COLOSS, i.e. Coroplast Logistics Support System, and DOBBY, a house elf in a Harry Potter story. In the end, the name CORA was chosen, an abbreviation of the words Coroplast, robot and automation. Welcome to the team, CORA!