Facilitating the future

An emphasis on efficiency and flexibility ensure TTI’s extended European headquarters are ready for future growth, thanks to investment in automation and Supply Chain 4.0 technology.

TTI is readying its European headquarters in Maisach-Gernlinden for the future with new office buildings and an extension of its existing distribution centre. With the new facilities in place, TTI boasts more than 30,000m² of warehouse space,
however, the challenge hasn’t only been to extend the space available, but also to use it more effectively.

With a new storage concept in place and investment in innovative technology, TTI has been able to increase the volume of warehouse space used by a factor of three. To be fully prepared for the future, the new buildings have also been planned generously, so that initially, only 60 per cent of the available space will be used, with the remaining space available for use at a later stage.

Warehouse technology
Investment in the latest warehouse technology is budgeted at around 23 million Euros, a figure which includes the implementation of integrated Supply Chain 4.0 software. TTI already communicates with nearly all its suppliers via different electronic data interchange standards and more than 700 customers are also connected with TTI through sophisticated logistics solutions.
Now the supply chain will also be optimised for intralogistics, with an intelligent combination of efficient automation and highly flexible manual elements.

For example, the existing pallet racking will be extended in a format compatible with narrow forklift trucks and reaching to a height of 15 metres. In the first phase, this will offer 21,000 pallet bays, with a possible further extension to 32,000 bays.

In addition to conventional racking, the extension will also include an autostore-system with 110,000 containers, which can also be doubled in a further extension. In the first phase, the autostore-system will consist of 50 robots, powered by silent electric motors, which present goods automatically at the 24 picking stations.

Picking and packing
Order commissioning will continue to be paperless, just as it is today, and this will be supported at picking stations by a put-to-light system, designed to guarantee order accuracy.

From now on, the consolidation of orders during two-stage commissioning will be handled automatically. This will be managed via a shuttle system with a total of 8,000 container positions, which can be extended to 12,000 positions in the future. Compared to traditional solutions, the shuttle system is expected to offer high performance and optimal space usage with low service and maintenance costs.

To further increase efficiency, and for optimal use of the transport vehicles in the shipping process, the system will employ automatic volume optimisation and parcel labelling. Not only will this help save shipping costs, it will also be more environmentally friendly.

Risk management
A final, but important, part of the project is an integrated risk management program consisting of failure modes and effects analysis and backup solutions to secure delivery capability at all times.

By planning the extension in two stages and combining different storage systems with a mix of manual operations and automisation, TTI expects to increase efficiency and flexibility when reacting to future market developments.