Concept voor geautomatiseerde belading van luchtvaartcontainers met bagage.
Report 2003.TL.6730, Transport Engineering and Logistics.
In this report a concept for automating a part of the baggage handling
system (BHS) on airports is treated. To load the baggage on a flight
leaving the airport, the baggage it is sorted by flight and is collected
on a make-up point. On the make-up point operators check if the baggage
belongs to the flight and then load the baggage on a transportation
system. Then the baggage is transported to the airplane. For wide-body
airplanes the transportation system consists of aluminum aviation
containers (ULD's), which stand on a container-dolley and are brought the
airplane with a trigger. The ULD is then loaded on the airplane.
This research concentrates on the loading of these ULD's, which is called
'make-up'. The 'make-up' in the current BHS is carried out manually. This
manual process contains the following problems:
The aim of this research is formulated as follows:
- The operators work under high pressure, in bad working conditions and
the work is physically heavy.
- The capacity of the total make-up process is too low to handle the
increasing flow of baggage in the future.
- The manual make-up process is more expensive than an automated
process. The two most important costs are:
- Cost of labor.
- Costs for lost baggage.
Design a concept for an automated system for loading air containers with
baggage in a baggage handling system on airports.
The following preconditions apply:
From analysis of the BHS, the current manual make-up process and possible
future plans for BHS, the required functions have been established from
the surroundings of the concept. The control of the technical components
is a very important component in an automated process, because this
element has to take over the task of the human brain of the operators. The
different possibilities for control have been explained and following
required functions have been concluded.
- The research has an exploratory character.
- The concept is in the first place designed for use on the Amsterdam
- For the technical part of the concept standard technical components and
installations for materials handling and baggage handling can be used.
Different logistical concepts have been enumerated, which follow from
possible material flows and handling methods for baggage. The most
important criterion for the logistical concepts, the volume utilization of
an ULD, has been quantified. With that criterion the logistical concepts
have been evaluated. For the chosen logistical concepts several working
methods for the functions have been considered. With these methods a
morphological overview can be created. From this overview the alternatives
for the technical concepts has been created. Finally the alternatives have
been compared on the basis of a number of criteria.
The research has lead to the following conclusions:
It is not possible to design a concept for use at on all airports in the
world. The characterizations of the material and information flows are too
much derogatory for different situations. This research is therefore
focused on devising a concept for Schiphol.
The aim of the design for the Schiphol situation is: Automate the make-up
process, so that bad working conditions, cost of labor and costs lost
baggage are reduced and the capacity of the process is raised.
By examining the logistical and technical possibilities of the concept two
alternatives for the concept have been created:
- If the volume utilization is the only important criterion to choose a
concept, alternative 1.3 is the most suitable. This is a concept where the
batch of baggage pieces is presorted in the BHS on sequence of loading in
the ULD. It does not contain a buffer for baggage pieces. The baggage is
loaded in the ULD by a portal robot.
- If both the volume utilization and the costs for adaptations of the BHS
are important, alternative 12.1 is the most suitable. This is a concept
where baggage is not presorted in the BHS and for this reason does contain
a buffer for baggage pieces. The baggage is loaded in the ULD with a
telescopic conveyor in a portal.
With both alternatives the aim of the design is reached:
The two concepts also meet the demands which have been made by Schiphol:
- Working conditions have improved because the workload and physical
exertion for the operators have been reduced.
- Working conditions have not been improved with respect to the
surroundings of the operators.
- The costs have been reduced, because fewer operators needed for the
process and no more baggage is lost.
- The capacity of a make-up point is raised, as a result of which the
total capacity of the make-up process in BHS is raised.
The make-up process can not be automated for 100%. It continues to need
work done by humans. That is caused by:
- The spatial occupation fits 13000 mm x 6000 mm.
- All standard baggage and all ULD types which can be treated by the system.
- The capacity of the concepts is higher than 6,4 ULD's/hour.
The research described in this report can indicated as an exploratory research.
By the analysis it is concluded which design factors are important for the
loading of aviation containers with baggage. For both the logistical concepts
and the technical concepts the different possibilities have been enumerated in
overviews. Also it has been indicated on which choices the concepts have been
based and which follow-up studies are necessary. The research gives a clear
insight in the problems for designing the system and gives a broad basis for a
more detailed design.
- The lower volume utilization (85%) with respect to the current process (95%).
- The reliability of the load, which is influenced by the form, the form
consistency and the surface properties of baggage.
Reports on Transport Engineering and Logistics (in Dutch)
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