Briefing: Westfalia Technologies raises Quad Graphics to a new level of automation
Westfalia Technologies recently completed the installation of a High Density Automated Storage and Retrieval System (AS/RS) for Quad Graphics Inc. at the company’s Sussex, Wisconsin plant. Quad Graphics is the nation’s third largest commercial printing company.
This is the second Quad Graphics plant to install a Westfalia AS/RS. The emphasis on efficiency gains through automation began in 2005, when Quad Graphics installed a Westfalia High Density AS/RS at its Lomira, Wis. plant.
Westfalia’s AS/RS at the Lomira plant, the largest single printing facility in the Western Hemisphere, streamlines and expedites print production. The system is designed with two S/RMs in each aisle, cutting the travel distance of the cranes in half. Coupled with center stationed infeed and outfeed conveyors, this system will provide extremely high throughput rates. The Lomira facility stores three different styles of pallets — plastic USPS, plastic 9-block and a wooden internal pallet - without the need for slave pallets. The 42,005 pallet position, high density automated storage system measures 776’ x 92’ wide and 107’ high. The system will contain four Storage/Retrieval Machines and 1,600 linear feet of conveyors.
Challenge: Need to streamline and expedite production
The Sussex facility houses the largest web offset pressroom in the world and has received an influx of new projects from Condé Nast Publications, publisher of magazine titles Vogue, GQ, House & Garden and Allure.
Solution: High Density AS/RS
The Sussex storage system, which encompasses 21 levels, includes six Westfalia Storage/Retrieval machines (S/RM). The 37,878-pallet position high density system measures 356 feet long, 149 feet wide, 121 feet high (12 stories) and covers approximately 53,000 square feet. Functions include conveyance, storage and sequencing for work-in-process materials. The system retrieves pallets of logs (bundles of signatures) and delivers them for binding. The S/RMs travel on rails between the rows of storage racks and accept 100 percent of Quad’s production requirements without human involvement.
“These new systems played a major role in helping Quad/Graphics realize their goal of building a highly efficient, highly flexible, yet space-saving and labor-saving facility,” said Dan Labell, President of Westfalia Technologies, Inc. "Quad/Graphics now has a plant that will certainly set new standards for the commercial printing market.”
“Westfalia has installed similar systems all over the world and are renowned for their quality, flexibility and dependability,” says Bob Douglas, a master electrician with Quad’s Corporate Facilities. "This system will meet our needs for many years to come.”
“The new high density storage system will enable us to streamline and expedite production by making our work-in-process more readily accessible.” Tom Quadracci
- Overall Dimensions: 776’long x 92’ wide x 107’ high
- 4 Storage/Retrieval Machines
- 1,600 linear feet of conveyor
- 42,005 pallet positions
- 12-level rack system
- Overall Dimensions: 356’ long x 149’ wide x 121’ high
- 6 Storage/Retrieval Machines
- 37,878 pallet positions
- 21-level rack system
- Streamline and expedite production by making work-in-process more readily accessible
- Will meet the needs now and into the future