Travel retailer launches first driverless transport system

Heinemann-automated-forkliftsDuty free giant, Gebr. Heinemann, has launched the world’s first driverless transport system at Oslo International airport, using the transport solution to supply its shops inside the terminal.

The travel retail operator is using the tech to service its departures area of the international terminal and where there are 500 metres across multiple levels separating the receipt of goods at the airport from the two Heinemann Duty Free outlets.

“In addition to a high level of efficiency, reliability and flexibility, this system uses special technology to ensure compliance with the ‘secure supply chain’,” the company stated. Heinemann has invested almost €1 million in the project.

Heinemann’s industrial engineering team partnered with E&K Automation, to configure automated, laser-controlled forklifts for the system. The software requirements for steering, navigation and safety that have the made a Secured Automated Ground Vehicles (SAGV) are the first of its kind, according to the retailer.

The two Heinemann Duty Free shops in the departures area of the airport, now supplied by the vehicles, have an area of 4,600sqm and are continually supplied with around 11,000 articles such as cigarettes, confectionery, wine and spirits, perfume and cosmetics and accessories.

“Every day we move a large volume of goods over the long distance of 500 metres and across different levels,” Marco Rebohm, director of logistics at Gebr. Heinemann.

We adapted the SAGV to this requirement. This increases our productivity and ensures the secure supply-chain from the logistics centre to our shops. It also spares our employees particularly physically demanding work. We were able to incorporate their know-how into our technical planning and they can now take on new assignments in the shops and providing service to our customers.”

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