Complete equipping of a distribution center with sensor systems

  • Aus dem Distributionszentrum in Leipzig kann Future Electronics alle Kunden innerhalb von 24 Stunden beliefern - ein enormer Wettbewerbsvorteil. Foto: Witron

  • Die Elektronikkomponenten werden an 20 Arbeitsplätzen kommissioniert. Foto: Witron

  • Qualitativ hochwertige Sensorik ist ein wichtiges Kriterium für die Wirtschaftlichkeit und Verfügbarkeit von mechanischen Logistiksystemen – Leuze electronic hat das Future-Distributionszentrum in Leipzig gesamthaft mit Sensorikkomponenten ausgestattet. Foto: Future Electronics

  • Das Distributionszentrum für den EMEA-Raum in Leipzig ist das logistische Herzstück des Next-Day-Lieferservices von Future Electronics innerhalb Europas. Foto: Witron

  • Durch die Automatisierungsunterstützung auch im Bereich der Sensorik hat Future Electronics die Prozess-transparenz erheblich gesteigert. Foto: Witron

Trendsetting logistics at Future Electronics

Sensor manufacturer Leuze electronic equips distribution center in Leipzig

Since the beginning of 2010, the Canadian distributor Future Electronics has been supplying customers in the whole of Europe, the Middle East and Africa with electronic components via its new distribution center in Leipzig, Germany. The Parkstein-based system integrator Witron Logistik + Informatik GmbH was responsible as general contractor for the planning and implementation of the facility, while all the sensors were supplied by Leuze electronic GmbH + Co. KG based in Owen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany.

The Future Electronics distribution center in Leipzig has replaced the manually operated central warehouse in Hayes, England, as the logistics center in the British Isles had no scope for further growth. As one of the Canadian electronics component distributors’ three logistics centers worldwide, Leipzig now plays a central role in the company’s further strategic orientation. “The distribution center for the EMEA region in Leipzig forms the logistics heart of our next day delivery service within Europe, the Middle East and Africa,” says Lothar Hüther, Maintenance Manager and Head of Technical Service at Future Electronics in Leipzig. “This facility also enables us to handle the complete warehousing for our customers, on request, and to offer numerous further value-added services.”

High availability and performance capability of the facility

Customers from the electronics industry in the whole of Europe, Africa and the Middle East are supplied amongst other things with semi-conductors, passive connecting components, LCD displays, wireless transmission media, RFID solution modules and a vast variety of other electronic components via the 15,000 square meter distribution center in Leipzig. The range of articles also includes parts measuring only about one millimeter.

“The scope of our services from the logistics side includes not only the design and fine planning, but also the supply, mounting and commissioning of all the mechanical warehousing and materials handling equipment,” explains Witron project manager Hans Schütz. “That also includes all the necessary IT systems, the warehouse management software, PLC systems, networks and peripheral devices.”

In view of the high availability demands on the facility – which can be used if necessary up to 365 days a year, 24 hours a day – the sensors also play an important role. The range of products from Leuze electronic employed in the facility extends from the simple Light Beam Device for materials handling through bar code scanners and laser-based distance sensors right up to the sensors for high-bay storage devices and the whole scope of the safety sensors. This holistic approach and the fulfillment of the project partners’ highest demands on the availability and durability of the facility are absolutely central in the activities of both Leuze electronic and Witron.

“High-quality sensors are an extremely important criterion for the profitability and availability of mechanical logistics systems,” adds Witron project manager Schütz. “It is therefore important to work together with competent partners for this aspect, and Leuze electronic has been just such a partner for many years.”

Logistic performance significantly enhanced

Thanks to the automation support, the quality of order picking, delivery performance and the transparency of whole processes at Future Electronics have been significantly improved compared with a manual solution. A great advantage here was that Leuze electronic could meet all the demands and supply the whole bandwidth of sensors. That applies to the bar code scanners employed, and to the laser distance sensors. Crucial factors here apart from the integrated interfaces were the high measurement dynamics, very high functionality and simple configuration.

The Reflection Light Beam Devices used in many places reliably detect even objects shrink-wrapped or covered with stretch film and offer not only high ranges but also high performance reserves. For this reason, and also due to their sturdiness and resistance to soiling, they are absolutely predestined for use on roller conveyors.

Leuze electronic has the right sensor for every conceivable application in the Future project – right down to the light barriers for personnel protection, because safety at work is also an area in which Leuze electronic has made a name for itself with a wide variety of reliable safety sensors.

On the basis of the overall product package, the comprehensive application know-how and ongoing partner-like support, Leuze electronic proved to be the ideal partner for Witron for the implementation of the project at Future Electronics.

Distribution center with exemplary character

In view of the positive experience in Leipzig, Future Electronics considers it quite conceivable that similar logistics systems could also be installed at other locations, because they see the similarity of the systems at the various locations as a further competitive advantage in international business. "For us and our customers, a globally linked supply chain management system including procurement and warehousing is of crucial importance," says Lothar Hüther. "We want to be able to handle the delivery to individual regions absolutely flexibly, with a “ship from everywhere to everywhere” principle." A good concept that can only be implemented with outstanding logistics solutions and experienced partners.

Toegepaste producten

  • Branche/vakgebied

    Conveyor and storage systems

  • Taakomschrijving

    Distance, Bar code, Positioning

  • Applicatie

    Complete equipping of a distribution center with sensor systems