Case: Borealis

Focusing primarily on polythene manufacture for the wire and cable, pipe, and film industries, the Sweden-based Borealis supports customers with speciality plastics for some of the largest energy supply, oil, and water pipeline projects in the world. Rocla’s automated guided vehicles have been working constantly at this unique site for over a decade now, transporting special containers. Rocla’s automation solution has enabled Borealis to increase the storage space and speed up the flow of work while minimising damage.

In 2001, Rocla received an order from Borealis for 10 AGVs. Then, in 2003, Borealis added four new AGVs to the system. The 14 Rocla AGVs transport octabins from the production area to storage and from the storage area to the dispatch area for lorries. The total warehouse area on the site covers 24,700 square metres and contains 15,231 octabin pallets. The turnover factor is eight times a year. The flow has stayed constant throughout the 11 years of automation. In the storage lanes, the octabins stand two by two, on top of each other to multiply the storage capacity by 2.

Excellent experience of measurable benefits with a Rocla AGV system

The first delivery, with its 10 vehicles, was implemented more than a decade ago. It was placed to answer the customer’s need for more storage space in a single location. The rearranging of the consumed batches compressed the storage and saved a great deal of space. Borealis became able to store and dispatch in one location with the aid of Rocla’s automation solution.

Earlier, with multiple storage locations, more damage occurred. The current automation solution not only has reduced the damage but also decreased the labour and transportation costs while making the logistics process more efficient and saving time.

In the course of these years of operation, the Rocla AGV system has been developed further and updated technologically. The latest tasks were to increase the out-feed speed and to expand the storage space available. The available storage has been increased through reduced distance between the octabins in the lanes and also by putting to use the square centimetres here and there that were blocked by pillars earlier. These efforts have really paid off: the transport efficiency has increased by more than 50%, and the storage capacity has increased, with 1,000 additional locations.