Founded in 1933, Herbert Voigt GmbH & Co. KG is one of Northern Germany’s leading transport and logistics services providers. Via a network of precisely scheduled routes, some 50 vehicles leave the company’s premises each day, transporting general freight of all kinds throughout Europe according to strict delivery timetables. Voigt also manages storage facilities for various industrial, chemical and trade customers.
To increase capacity, Voigt Logistik commissioned a state-of-the-art, 10,000-square-metre distribution hub with 106 loading gates. The company follows the Green Logistics philosophy, always striving to use the most energy-efﬁcient technology available. Crown’s robust SC Series counterbalance forklifts, DT Series double stackers and WT Series pallet trucks, all previously powered by lead-acid batteries, had already proved their worth in the company’s logistics centres. But Voigt’s challenging two-shift operation made battery changes unavoidable. This resulted in expensive peak loads on the power grid when all the batteries were connected to charging stations simultaneously. It also meant that too much time and money was spent on battery maintenance and other unproductive activities, as well as replacement batteries.
Still at the planning stage, Voigt Logistik and Crown jointly developed a new, sustainable energy concept for operating the company’s forklift truck ﬂeet using an innovative battery technology with shorter, more ﬂexible charging cycles. Crown recommended clean, energy-efﬁcient lithium-ion technology, because the batteries’ fast-charging capability means that they can be given a top-up recharge at any time and recharged from empty in just two hours. The positioning of charging stations alongside loading gates and near rest areas was speciﬁed during the construction planning phase, to ensure that battery charging was fully integrated with operational and logistical workﬂows. A photovoltaic array was installed on the roof of the building, delivering storable electricity that is used to power both the building’s electric systems and the forklift ﬂeet’s battery chargers. Thanks to lithium-ion technology, the company no longer needs to change batteries, pay for expensive replacement batteries, or spend unproductive time on cleaning and ﬁlling lead-acid batteries with water.
> The lithium-ion ﬂeet has achieved a cumulative efﬁciency level of around 90% – an improvement of 50+% over conventional lead-acid batteries.
> The ﬂeet’s sustained high performance without performance drops, coupled with its top-up recharging capability, means that rest periods and downtime can be used productively, resulting in signiﬁcantly increased productivity.
> Efﬁcient, clean lithium-ion technology plus the building’s self-contained, clean electricity supply based on photovoltaics are a good ﬁt with Voigt Logistik’s Green Logistics philosophy and sustainability strategy.
“We never even considered using another supplier. Thanks to their all-round expertise in and lengthy experience of lithium-ion technology, Crown is one of the market’s leading innovators.”
About Crown Equipment Corporation – EMEA
Crown is one of the world’s largest material handling companies with a reputation for award-winning product design, advanced engineering and technology supported by superior after-sales service. Crown’s business philosophy utilises vertically integrated processes to design, manufacture and distribute forward-thinking innovative solutions that improve customers’ productivity and operating efficiency. Crown develops, produces and sells a broad range of forklifts, as well as automation and fleet management technologies.
The company’s global headquarters is located in New Bremen, Ohio, USA, with regional headquarters in Germany, Australia, China and Singapore. Its employees number more than 16,000 worldwide. Crown operates a service and distribution network that exceeds 500 retail locations in over 80 countries. To learn more about Crown’s ideas for helping customers advance the productivity of their operations, visit crown.com.