Automation, a sustainability factor in intralogistics - Alstef Group

Facing energy challenges that companies have to cope with, the flow and storage automation contributes to enhance energy savings and reduce carbon footprint. Alstef Group automated solutions provide efficiency, sustainability and answers to the technological and productivity challenge.

Energy efficiency: a global system approach

Management intelligence dedicated to flows

From the very beginning of the design and pre-installation studies, Alstef Group’s engineering and design departments elaborate the project most fitted to the operating requirements. Our system expertise allows us to provide an upstream intelligent solution integrating the optimization of flows and movements, in order to reduce the energy wastage caused by reorganization movements and load resumption.

By improving the fluidity and reliability of processes, automation reduces the efforts to restart the production, saving time and energy. The company then benefits from a double advantage: on the one hand in terms of ROI and on the other hand in terms of reliability of production and order preparation.

Alstef Group AGV Gemey Maybelline
TK_Alstef Group stacker crane

Stock densification as an environmental lever

The automated storage systems by stacker crane or AGV, thanks to their high height and to space optimization, provide 50% more stock massification than a manual storage. This storage system is an interesting alternative form an environmental point of view. By optimizing the storage surface, significant savings are made not only in materials but mainly in the building’s energy consumption with a reduction of the space to be heated, cooled and lighted. This asset is all the more significant in fully automated « Dark stores », which avoid energy waste since they they require little or no lighting and heating.

Optimizing the energy performance of equipment

Accredited with both Ecovadis Silver and ISO 14001 (Environmental Management), Alstef Group is committed to an eco-responsible approach based on continuous innovation and an ambitious R&D program in order to offer always more durable and sustainable solutions.

Regarding pallets transfer equipment, our conveyors work solely when the transport of the loads is necessary, reducing the consumption thanks to the anticipation of the flows.

Alstef Group Convoyeur
TK Stacker crane Alstef group automated storage
Alstef Group Convoyeur

Storage systems and power recovery

Our stacker crane, thanks to its modular drive, integrates the functions of energy retrieval and reinjection on the electrical network. When an axis is in the energy restitution phase, the energy recovery consists in redistributing this energy to the other axis. Re-injection, by converting the energy in extra electricity, which is compatible with the electrical network, allows to feed the equipment in the stacker crane, as well as the equipment on the ground such as conveyors, machine etc. With traditional solutions, this energy is wasted as heat in a resistance. In a negative temperature building, this technology brings additional savings in refrigerating energy.

Another solution developped by our team: systems based on super capacitors. Embedded on our stacker cranes, they allow a general reduction in equipment consumption of 20%. The peak of consumption during accelerating phases is smoothed out by the capacitors, enabling to significantly reduce the size of the power supply.

Our storage AGVs are also equipped with an energy recovery system. The GT16, a dedicated storage vehicle for narrow alleys (VNA) up to 12 meters, takes exploits the energy generated during deceleration or slowdowns. Thus, during lifting, hydraulics unit adjusts in real time the torque or the strength according to requested speeds or constraints.  

Energy performance monitoring and control software

We also integrate environmental performance monitoring into OPAL, our management software. Our KPI and reporting module, Opal Analytics, proposes energy consumption indicators by combining real data from the fuse boxes. These indicators meet the requirements of BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) certification, international standard that measures environmental impact of a building.