Ulvila, Finland — Cimcorp, a manufacturer and integrator of turnkey robotic gantry-based order fulfillment and tire-handling solutions, will supply its Dream Factory solution for end-to-end automated materials handling to Giti Tire, a global tire company, for its brand-new manufacturing facility being built in South Carolina. Cimcorp will be responsible for the complete turnkey system — including not only all the automation equipment, but also total system control, project management and seamless integration.
In the multimillion-dollar deal, Cimcorp and its parent company, Murata Machinery (Muratec), will install the automated logistics systems for the new passenger car radial (PCR) tire plant being built in Chester County. The new plant will be Giti’s first manufacturing facility in the U.S. and its eighth production site worldwide — Giti already has one plant in Indonesia and six in China. The South Carolina facility is expected to generate 1,700 new jobs and produce 10 million passenger and light truck tires annually when fully operational.
Wu Zhicheng, general manager of the corporate equipment center at Giti Tire and responsible for the U.S. plant project, commented “From the beginning, we decided to build an advanced tire-manufacturing facility equipped with the latest automation technologies. Investment in Cimcorp’s Dream Factory will ensure high throughput of high-quality tires.”
The Cimcorp solution will take care of the handling and storage (at both constant and ambient temperatures) of raw materials – including natural rubber, polymer rubber, belt steel, bead wire and textile ply — and components such as calender rolls, belt carts, ply/inner liner carts, sidewall carts, tread carts and bead carts. The automation technology will include conveyor systems for the unloading of the tire-building machines and transfer of green tires to the curing buffers; miniload automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS) for green tire buffer storage; and monorail transfers for delivery to the presses. In addition, Cimcorp’s scope of supply includes automation of the testing area, finished tire buffers and palletizing stations. In this first joint project with Cimcorp, Muratec will supply high-bay warehousing systems featuring stacker cranes for raw materials and components, as well as the miniload automated AS/RS for green tires. All automated equipment — robots, monorails, conveyors, stacker cranes and miniload cranes — will be controlled by Cimcorp’s warehouse control software (WCS), which will ensure 100 percent availability of all materials at all process machines. The automated handling systems will be delivered and installed in three stages throughout 2017 to 2019.
“With Muratec’s warehousing and transportation technologies, we have been able to integrate key upstream components in the Dream Factory solution; they are a perfect fit for the handling of raw materials and components," Kai Tuomisaari, vice president of sales and projects, Cimcorp, said. "Total control of the material flow and an optimized plant layout allows us to secure great space savings for Giti at its Greenfield site.”
The Dream Factory solution is suitable for both Brownfield and Greenfield sites. In fact, Cimcorp has delivered fully automated solutions to seven of the top ten tire manufacturers globally. With total control of the manufacturing process at each stage — including real-time data for production and inventory management — Dream Factory ensures optimum utilization of the most valuable process machinery, such as the building machines and curing presses, to secure crucial increases in production capacity.