New Hörmann DOBO system and docking assistant
13 September 2010
Hörmann has completed the first UK installation of their new DOBO system allowing trucks to dock on a loading bay before opening the rear doors.Supplied to pharmaceutical company Teva UK Limited, at its Eastbourne site, the new loading bays increase security and reduce heat loss through the bay doors.
In conjunction with the DOBO system this is also the first UK installation of the Hörmann docking assistant that helps drivers dock in the optimum position. The docking assistant operates via proximity sensors in the loading bay door linked to traffic lights that “guide” the driver into position. Green indicates that the truck can reverse onto the bay, amber indicates the truck is nearly in position and red indicates the truck is in the optimum position for docking.
Once the truck is on the dock the inflatable dock seals surround the vehicle on three sides. The vehicle is now docked with both the loading bay door and the truck doors still closed. For Teva this improves security, minimises heat loss and maintains a clean environment. Wheel locks are then applied to the truck to further enhance safety in the loading area.
With the Hörmann DOBO system the loading door sits in a recess in front of the dock leveller and behind the dock buffers. When the loading door is opened the specially designed dock buffers can then be lowered below the lower level of the truck doors. This allows the truck doors to be unlocked and opened in to the recess designed into the bay area. To accommodate the door opening the 6 tonne capacity dock leveller is angled downwards in a below dock position. Once the truck doors have been opened the 1000mm telescopic lip of the dock leveller can be positioned and the truck can be unloaded or loaded as required.
This attention to detail extends to Hörmann's project management of the installation, as explained by Hörmann Project Engineer, Phil Thorpe, who took charge of this work. “Due to the slope on the hard standing leading down to the bays we were working with a design that allowed only 120mm between the back of the truck and the face of door. As we manufacture all our equipment so that it integrates efficiently we are able to meet these fine tolerances. We can also set the proximity sensors of the docking assistant to a sensitivity of 50mm so that we can optimise the truck positioning to maximise the benefits of the DOBO system and the wheel locking safety feature.”
For Teva the involvement of Hörmann has given them a secure, efficient and safer loading bay solution ensuring that they maintain their commitment to operating to the highest standards. Teva's Engineering Project Manager, Charlie Weeks, is pleased with the new bays, saying “before we decided to install the DOBO system Hörmann took us to Holland to inspect an installed system to ensure we could fully understand how this new solution would fulfill our objectives. This care over meeting our requirements has extended throughout the build process and we look forward to many years of trouble-free operation”.
As with all Hörmann industrial applications this is essentially a bespoke solution to ensure the customers requirements are met both now and in the future. There are alternative solutions for instances where the lift trucks employed cannot operate on an incline or where there are high loads that need parallel access. In this instance Hörmann have the option of a parallel connection so that high loads can be accommodated or alternatively simple stacker trucks can be employed.
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