XXL special solution for automotive suppliers

ZPF by TEKA ensures healthy and clean hall air at a.i.m. in Markgröningen.
Mercedes Benz, BMW Group, Daimler Truck and Porsche - the reference list of all in metal GmbH (a.i.m.) in Markgröningen near Stuttgart reads like a list of the best known representatives of the automotive scene. For 21 years, a.i.m. with its around 600 employees has been a successful tier 1 supplier primarily to the German automotive industry. Well-known premium and luxury car manufacturers rely on a.i.m., especially when it comes to "Body in White", namely parts that are assembled as components of a car body using one or more different techniques such as welding, riveting, or gluing. a.i.m. masters all relevant processes and focuses on laser welding, spot welding and gluing. With services in forming technology, joining technology and toolmaking, a.i.m. has made a name for itself as a partner for the entire metal construction industry and is regarded as a reliable supplier of complete assemblies. The company with headquarters in Pockau-Lengefeld is also represented in electromobility, construction and window and door industries. 

 In November 2021, a new production hall was put into operation, in which state-of-the-art welding robots are used. "For a major customer in the automotive industry, we now manufacture larger components here with up to 60 different individual parts just-in-time which means day and night and also at weekends. We have thus entered a new league as a direct supplier to the automotive industry. This strengthens our competitive position enormously", says Jan Janßen, Team Leader Project Management at a.i.m.. On around 2,000 sqm of the hall which is totalling 6,500 sqm, TEKA provides constantly purified indoor air with a special AirTech solution, benefiting around 11 employees per shift. "Health protection is enormously important to us, especially against the background of securing skilled labour," says Mister Janßen. 

After external planning at ATM, a.i.m. decided in favour of TEKA in the tender. "Through Kratschmeyer, the subcontractor commissioned by the general contractor, a.i.m. contacted us at the end of 2020." recalls Oleg Seikan, TEKA field service employee. In addition, TEKA had been known at the a.i.m. headquarters for many years. 

Planning phase - large-scale plant as a special solution 
 During the personal consultation, the extraordinary dimension of the project quickly became apparent. The particular challenge was to find a powerful and safe extraction and filter solution for 58 welding robots, which weld and glue up to 1,000 components per day in 3-shift operation. "By offering our units as a quasi modular system we are able to respond flexibly to specific customer requests," explains TEKA Managing Director Simon Telöken. "A decentralised solution was out of the question from the start, so our focus quickly fell on a large central extraction system," says Oleg Seikan. In close coordination with a.i.m., a large-scale unit with 110 KW output was developed and realised on the basis of the ZPF. 

The larger filter housings of the TEKA ZPF units, offering a total of 864 square metres of filter surface, are the basis of this special solution. The two filter modules were each equipped with a 55 kW fan and installed in a space-saving manner on a pedestal to form a complete system. The unit was also connected to the heat recovery system on the roof. "Our new production hall is the new flagship of the group in terms of design and energy efficiency. "We can reuse the rejected heat from all production steps as well as from the extraction," Mister Janßen explains with satisfaction. The electricity required for this comes during the day from a PV system mounted on the roof. 

In addition, the system solution has two automatic dosing devices for filter aids as welding is very oily. By adding precoat powder the smoke is dehumidified and the surface of the cartridges is protected against adhesion. In this way, the service life of the filter cartridges can be extended. To ensure comprehensive extraction at the various workstations, 11 generously dimensioned extraction hoods of up to 12 square metres were installed. The entire project was carried out from September to November 2021. "There were many interfaces in the project. The technical advice from TEKA was excellent, so that a direct assignment would also have been conceivable," explains the project manager. 

And this is how the overall system works: The extraction hoods are installed above the welding robots and collect the corresponding welding fumes. The raw air enters the two filter chambers of the unit via the pipework. Here the particulate pollutants deposit on the surface of the filter cartridges. At reasonable intervals the filter cartridges are cleaned fully automatically by means of compressed air. The particles adhering on the cartridges are detached by the jet of high-pressure air and enter two disposal containers placed underneath the pedestal. After filtration, the purified air is passed through a heat exchanger that found a place on the roof of the new hall and discharges the purified air to the environment after heat transfer. The fresh air drawn in counter currently is heated as required and fed back into the production process via displacement diffusers. As a safety device the unit is equipped with a particle sensor on the pure air side. Thus, a permanent safety monitoring for example against filter collapses takes place. The fan is automatically switched off in case of an error message. At the same time the unit control triggers a visual and acoustic signal to warn the operator. 

Since commissioning, the unit has been running smoothly and can be flexibly adapted to changing production capacities in the future. 

Caption (024): Automotive supplier a.i..m has built a state-of-the-art 6,500-square-meter hall in Markgröningen, Germany, and relies on TEKA for manufacturing for clean air. 
Caption (7356,7355): On the basis of the ZPF, a large-scale system with 110 kW output was custom-designed and mounted on a platform to save space. mounted on a pedestal. 
Caption (7354): During the production of up to 1,000 components per day 11 extraction hoods measuring 2.5 m x 2 m or 3 m x 4 m ensure a healthy healthy ambient air during robot welding.