Ahead of Konecranes” official launch of its latest service innovation, Agilon next month, the world’s leading lifting equipment manufacturer has announced that is has installed and commissioned the system solution within its own parts operation here in the UK.
In addition to accommodating some 70% of Konecranes’ existing parts inventory, utilisation of Agilon has also served deliver a key benefit that the materials management solution has the capability of providing, a significant footprint gain.
As Paul Nagy, General Manager for Agilon comments: “Whilst Agilon has the capability of delivering many operational benefits, the fact that it utilises height is set to be one of its prime drivers. Indeed the situation within our own parts operation is a perfect example. Using a 22m x 6m, two-piece system with connecting tunnel that has a height of 5.6m has helped free up more than 30% additional floor space.”
The same sentiments are also shared by Konecranes’ head of its UK parts operation, Pamela Severn-Dabbs. “Agilon is helping transform our parts operation and in many ways, however the additional floor space that it has freed up is already proving a real benefit. We have a progressive and forward thinking strategy in place for the parts operation, which represents an increasingly significant aspect of Konecranes’ operation here in the UK, and Agilon is set play an instrumental part in this,” she said.
Despite the fact that the decision to launch Agilon was only announced at the end of May, it has already attracted significant attention from a number of leading single and multi-site organisations across many industry sectors. As Paul Nagy adds: “Interest in the system has more than exceeded our expectations, and what is particularly pleasing is that this has emanated from a variety of sources, and not just across our existing customer base. Not surprisingly, since the Agilon system was installed at Castle Donington, we have used this opportunity to showcase its real potential in totally transforming the materials management process to a number of potential customers with whom we are now in the advanced stages of negotiation.”
Serving to embrace the era of the emerging industrial Internet, Agilon is a patented, fully–automated and modular intelligent solution that is designed to deliver added value to the materials management process. This is achieved by the revolutionary way in which components are managed, stored, picked and replenished, irrespective on end-use application.
The Agilon materials management solution consists of a net portal, user access point, a shelving system and one or several robots that travel within the system to pick parts and deliver them quickly and efficiently to one or more service points. The user interface shows the availability of parts or components, whilst also displaying an image of the specific part’s package that is needed. A fully modular system, Agilon can also be supplied with transportation tubes that can be used to connect multiple modular shelf systems, even when located on different floors.
In addition to being able to accommodate parts in original packaging and capable of handling goods or components from matchbox size to 60cm x 40cm x 45cm and weighing up to 25 kilogrammes, Agilon is supplied under a service lease contract that not only includes the modular, upgradeable system, but maintenance and spare parts.
“Whilst supplying the system within a service lease contract not only negates significant initial capital or large-scale investment, it ensures that the customer is guaranteed to receive Agilon system updates on a real-time basis, which future proofs their ability to ensure that ongoing production efficiencies are realised,” concludes Paul Nagy.
Each Agilon system is designed to meet the specific needs and objectives of each individual customer, the only requirements being suitable premises, internet connectivity and power supply. All Agilon system components are delivered to site in a fully enclosed container, with installation time of a typical 22m x 5.6m primary structure taking just 3 – 5 days. Not surprisingly, Agilon is truly universal in that it can be deployed across the fields of warehousing of production parts, production assembly, internal logistics, e-commerce and retailing.
In terms of system robustness, Konecranes claims that over a two-year test period Agilon delivered 99% uptime. Being built around self-aware operating software, the system not only has the capability to monitor its own operating performance, but a Konecranes Global Technical Support (GTS) Team is in place to provide remote back up.