Serving all stations – Dürr modernizes hospital logistics
In 2002 Dürr was charged with completely re-engineering the internal logistical transport system at a hospital in southern Germany. This wide ranging project will continue through to 2020 and will be completed in a number of different stages. Since 2009 the expansion of plant systems in the hospital supplies building has already ensured the daily supply line of sterile items and of food for up to 500 patients and around 1,340 employees.
The modernization of this hospital is a major project: a 2.2 km long electric monorail conveyor system that runs underground takes care of the automatic transport of goods (AGT) between seven different buildings. In up to 1900 movements a day, all items required to ensure optimal patient care are transported with the help of this system, whether from the operating theatres to instrument sterilization, from the dispensary to the wards, from the kitchens to the bed tower. In each case ten vertical shafts are used to deliver goods to the appropriate building floor. Dürr received the order for this wide-ranging project in 2002 and since then several significant milestones have been attained: renewal of all plant control systems, the monorail transport carrier and AGT container identification systems, low voltage power supply for the AGT system, emergency stop technology as well as a dispensary container and trolley store. Modernization is being carried out in stages to avoid the disturbances caused by shut down systems. This is being assured by Dürr through its professional project management and by being responsible, within this major project, for electrical planning, design, supply of control and conveyor technology as well as for building and commissioning supervision.
The first stage of modernization to the central supply building was completed in 2009. Starting from the central sterilization station for surgical equipment and the central kitchens, the two points at which plant system loading is at its highest, a logistical solution was created that was both technically well engineered and also cost effective. The original vertical design of the carrier buffer for the monorail system was altered to a horizontal design and repositioned in front of the shaft. Vertical conveyor elements were installed in the shaft, which can convey 60 containers per hour. On the kitchen and sterilization floors ‘send and receive’ stations, fulfilling all hygiene-related requirements, have been provided for container transport. At these stations staff members direct the containers to their individual destinations. The plant control system then accepts each container transporting it quickly to that destination. The plant control system is made up of a higher level supervisory control system and the various stations, routing points, voltage supply and safety controls linked to it in a network.
The story doesn’t end there, however: in 2010 commissioning is planned of new conveyor technology, which will be procured by Dürr from its manufacturing base in Radóm, Poland and installed for other stations in the supply building and in the bed tower area. Dürr has also received an order for conveyor systems to transport containers to and from the third container cleaning plant in the supply building.
Frank Noll - frank.noll(at)durr.com - +49 7142 78-2777
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